Dateline Rice for April 26, 2013


HISD teacher bonuses improve results in some areas
A new Rice University study suggests that HISD’s multimillion-dollar bonus program improves attendance and retention among teachers and leads to continued gains in students’ test scores. Ruth Lopez Turley, associate professor of sociology and director of the Houston Education Research Consortium, is quoted.
Houston Chronicle (subscription required) (This article appeared on the front of the City & State section.)
Rice study gives thumbs up to HISD’s ASPIRE program
West University Examiner (This article also appeared in the Katy Rancher, the Memorial Examiner, the Sugar Land Sun and the Fort Bend Sun.)


The man who sent Dylan Thomas into space
George Abbey, the Baker Botts Senior Fellow in Space Policy at Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy, is profiled for his life and career. (This article also appeared on and

Science of Batman: Canadian university offers physical education class in the Dark Knight
A university in Canada is offering a course in the science of Batman. The Rice course "The Cape and the Cowl: The Literary, Televised and Film History of Batman" is mentioned.

Master Series ends with start of 6-part Bach concerto
Gregory Barnett, associate professor of musicology, will offer a preconcert lecture for a Victoria Symphony performance of Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto.
Chicago Tribune (This article also appeared on


Will presidential library answer the key questions of Bush’s tenure?
Douglas Brinkley, professor of history and fellow in history at Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy, is quoted in a column about the George W. Bush Presidential Center. Brinkley is also quoted in an article about the possibility Jeb Bush may run for president.
Dallas Morning News (This article also appeared in the Aberdeen News, the Burbank Leader and the Savannah Morning News.)
Ignore Barbara Bush’s ‘no-more-Bushes’ quip

University of Houston officially smoke-free
School officials announced that the University of Houston will become tobacco-free June 1. The article notes that Rice banned tobacco on campus last year.
Houston Chronicle (This article appeared on the front of the City & State section.)

The rest of the best: Houston’s top 10 college campus buildings
Rice’s Lovett Hall and McMurtry College’s dining hall appear on a list of top 10 Houston college buildings.
Houston Press

Czech? Chechen? We can’t be ignorant anymore
Dominic Boyer, associate professor of anthropology, is quoted in a column about geography education.
Houston Chronicle (This article appeared on the front of the Star section.)

Who needs zoning with Chapter 42? Revised rules aim to dictate Houston’s growth
An article about zoning in Houston mentions the Kinder Houston Area Survey, conducted annually by Stephen Klineberg, professor of sociology and co-director of the Kinder Institute for Urban Research.

ASU announces 2013 top graduates
An article about Angelo State University academic awards mentions Rice.
San Angelo Standard-Times


Edward Djerejian, founding director of Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy, is quoted in a story about the dedication of the George W. Bush Presidential Center.

Mark Jones, the Joseph D. Jamail Chair in Latin American Studies, professor and chair of political science and fellow in political science at Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy, is quoted in news items about the dedication of the George W. Bush Presidential Center.

KFDA-TV (Amarillo, Texas)
The Keystone Oil Pipeline has gotten backlash from people worried about pollution from the project, including people here in Houston. Dagobert Brito, the George A. Peterkin Professor of Political Economy, is quoted.

Alumnus Hector Ruiz ’73 is interviewed about his life and career.


Today’s Topic: People of ACM: Moshe Vardi
Moshe Vardi, the Karen Ostrum George Distinguished Service Professor of Computational Engineering and professor of computer science, is interviewed about his research and career.
Association for Computing Machinery

Wanted: A ‘perfect’ cup of coffee for space
A group of Rice University engineering students think they can make the perfect cup of coffee with a 3-D printer for astronauts aboard the International Space Station. Duncan College sophomore Colin Shaw, Will Rice College sophomore Robert Johnson and Jones College sophomore Benjamin Young are mentioned. A link to a Rice-produced video is featured.

With natural gas costly, AEP burning more coal
Rising natural-gas prices mean American Electric Power is burning more coal and less gas compared with a year ago, according to the company’s chief executive. Ken Medlock, the James A. Baker III and Susan Baker Fellow in Energy and Resource Economics at the Baker Institute, senior director of the Center for Energy Studies and adjunct assistant professor in economics, is quoted.

Trojan horse strategy and treatment of breast cancer
Research by Naomi Halas, the Stanley C. Moore Professor in Electrical and Computer Engineering, director of Rice’s Laboratory for Nanophotonics and professor of physics and astronomy, chemistry and biomedical engineering, is cited in an article about breast cancer research.


In and around Bandon, April 25
Brandon Dugan, associate professor of Earth science, will speak at Southwest Oregon Community College April 26.
Bandon Western World (Ore.)

Mariposa symphony to celebrate coming of spring
Alumna Ann Miller ’03 will perform with the Mariposa Symphony Orchestra.
Merced Sun-Star (Calif.)


Humber humbled again as Astros bow to Bosox
An article reports on the performance of former Rice baseball player Philip Humber in a game between the Houston Astros and the Boston Red Sox.
Houston Chronicle


Rice study: Performance-based financial rewards improve teacher attendance, retention and students’ test scores
Performance-based financial rewards improve teacher attendance and retention and students’ test scores, according to a Rice University study of the Houston Independent School District’s educator award program known as ASPIRE. Larger bonuses led to even greater improvements, the study found.

About Patrick McLaughlin

Patrick McLaughlin is a news assistant in Rice University's Office of Public Affairs. Patrick is responsible for production of the daily newsletter Dateline Rice and maintaining databases of metrics of mentions of Rice in the news media.