Anderson-Clarke Center celebrates topping out

Rice University’s Susanne M. Glasscock School of Continuing Studies celebrated the “topping out” ceremony for its new home, the D. Kent and Linda C. Anderson and Robert L. and Jean T. Clarke Center, Aug. 9.

Approximately 50 people gathered at the building site to mark this significant benchmark in the construction: The structural project had “topped out,” or reached its highest point.

Among those in attendance were Glasscock School namesake, Rice trustee emeritus and co-chair of the Centennial Campaign, Susanne M. Glasscock ’62 and her husband, Melbern G. Glasscock ’61; Linda C. Anderson; Howard Tellepsen Jr. of Tellepsen Builders; and staff members from the Glasscock School and Rice. Following brief remarks by Glasscock School Dean Mary McIntire ’75, architects from Overland Partners and representatives from Tellepsen Builders led tours throughout the structure capped off with an opportunity for participants to sign a beam inside the entrance to the building and symbolically mark their contribution to this achievement.

“Today is something that is really hard to describe in words,” Susanne Glasscock said. “To stand here in front of this structure that, frankly, I’ve dreamed about for the last several years and to have the Anderson family and the Clarke family name on it, it’s hard to express. It’s a dream come true. It’s a dream come true for Rice, for the city of Houston, and I just feel good that we’ve been able to be part of it.”

“When we first endowed the school, we really weren’t thinking of a building at that time,” Melbern Glasscock said. “It’s exciting to have so many of our friends that are participating in the building, and for it to honor the Andersons and the Clarkes is just a thrill.”

Linda Anderson said Rice is a special place to her because it is where her brother, Robert Clarke ’63, and her then-future husband, D. Kent Anderson ’62, met as suite mates.

“For both of them to have been so involved at Rice and loved Rice for all these years, it’s just great that their names will go on forever,” she said.

While the event marked the topping out of the building, the Glasscock School’s staff and faculty are working toward attracting ever more students.

“We have been putting our enrollment numbers together for this past fiscal year that just ended, and it looks like we are a few hundred shy of 20,000 enrollments,” McIntire said. “That’s nearly double where we were six years ago.”

“This is less than seven months’ worth of construction; it’s going to be a beautiful building,” Susanne Glasscock said. “It just keeps getting better.”

For more information on the Glasscock School of Continuing Studies, visit

About Amy McCaig

Amy is a senior media relations specialist in Rice University's Office of Public Affairs.