Dateline Rice for Jan. 26, 2018


Secret report: Honduras’ new top cop helped cartel move coke
Gary Hale, a nonresident fellow in drug policy and Mexico studies at Rice’s Baker Institute for Public Policy, is quoted in an article on Honduras’ national police chief.
New York Times (This Associated Press article appeared in more than 200 media outlets.)

President Trump, please read ‘Desert Solitaire’
Professor of History Douglas Brinkley authored a review of Edward Abbey’s 1968 book, “Desert Solitaire: A Season in the Wilderness.”
New York Times

What’s behind the soaring cost of college textbooks
Nicole Finkbeiner, associate director for institutional relations at OpenStax, a Rice-based publisher of open educational resources, is quoted in articles on textbook prices.
CBS News (This article appeared in more than 10 media outlets.)
In fight for more affordable education, look to core classes
Common Dreams (This article also appeared in more than 10 media outlets.)

‘History shows humans cannot stop technological advancements’ — specialist
Moshe Vardi, director of Rice’s Ken Kennedy Institute for Information Technology, the Karen Ostrum George Distinguished Service Professor of Computational Engineering and professor of computer science, is quoted in an article on the pros and cons of artificial intelligence.

Border fence construction announced, environmentalists concerned
Rice research on the impact a potential wall along the U.S.-Mexico border would have on wildlife is mentioned.


Greater Houston After Harvey: A Houston Chronicle signature event
Jim Blackburn, a professor in the practice of environmental law and the co-director of Rice’s Severe Storm Prediction, Education and Evacuation from Disasters Center, was the keynote speaker at the Greater Houston After Harvey public forum.
Houston Chronicle (Subscription is required.)

Can an app help independent candidates in Mexico’s presidential election?
Baker College junior Angie Vertti authored a blog post on Mexico’s National Electoral Institute releasing a mobile app that helps prospective independent presidential candidates gather enough signatures to qualify.
Houston Chronicle

Millions of Texans have been giving their power away for many years — by not voting
Mark Jones, the Joseph D. Jamail Chair in Latin American Studies, professor of political science, fellow in political science at Rice’s Baker Institute for Public Policy and fellow at Rice’s Kinder Institute for Urban Research, is quoted in an article on the voting habits of Texans. Jones also is quoted in an article on the U.S. District 23 House race.
Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Democrats running for Will Hurd’s seat question his bipartisanship
San Antonio Express-News

Iconic Houston Sears store to close Sunday
Sears is closing its location on Main Street in Midtown Houston Jan. 28. The story mentions that Rice Management Co. owns the land.
Houston Chronicle (Subscription is required. This article also appeared in the San Antonio Express-News, and a portion of the article appeared in the Jan. 26 print edition of the Chronicle.)

Queer things to do in Houston this weekend: Jan. 25-28, 2018
The Rice Chinese Student Association’s 2018 Lunar New Year Show, schedule for Jan. 27, is mentioned.


KSL-AM (Salt Lake City)
Lin Zhong, professor of electrical and computer engineering, is quoted in a story on whether raising a cellphone to the sky can improve reception. (Click the audio button to listen to the broadcast.)

WSCL-FM (Salisbury, Md.)
Alumnus Jack Swanson ’16 is mentioned. (Click the audio button to listen to the broadcast.)


Engineers develop flexible, water-repellent graphene circuits for washable electronics
Pulickel Ajayan, the Benjamin M. and Mary Greenwood Anderson Professor in Engineering and chair of the Department of Materials Science and NanoEngineering, was part of a research team that developed new graphene printing technology that can produce electronic circuits that are low-cost, flexible, highly conductive and water-repellent. Ajayan also is mentioned in an article that mentions Rice’s development of a nanosponge that can absorb oil from the water’s surface.
Science Daily (This article was featured in the Jan. 26 edition of the National Science Foundation’s Science360 News.)
Here are 3 ways nanomaterials could help combat climate change

Cheaper fuel cells with nanomaterials
Nitrogen-doped carbon nanotubes or modified graphene nanoribbons may be suitable replacements for platinum for fast oxygen reduction, the key reaction in fuel cells that transform chemical energy into electricity, according to Rice researchers. Boris Yakobson, the Karl F. Hasselmann Professor of Materials Science and NanoEngineering and professor of chemistry, and lead author and former postdoctoral associate Xiaolong Zou are quoted.
Materials Today

Computational study ends debate over ArcLight’s fluorescence
Rice scientists have effectively quenched a debate over the mechanism behind a fluorescent biosensor that monitors neurons by sensing changes in voltage. Peter Rossky, the Harry C. and Olga K. Wiess Chair in Natural Sciences, a professor of chemistry and dean of the Wiess School of Natural Sciences, and postdoctoral researcher Lena Simine are quoted. José Onuchic, the Harry C. and Olga K. Wiess Chair of Physics, a professor of physics and astronomy, of chemistry and of biosciences, is mentioned.
Technology Networks (A similar article appeared in Scicasts.)

Your next job interview could be playing a weird smartphone game
Margaret Beier, associate professor of psychology, is quoted in an article on companies using video games to filter out job applicants.
New Scientist

Report: Parents value engagement, but say schools fall short
Although schools’ family and community engagement is the top driver of overall satisfaction among parents, public schools nationwide get poor marks for it, according to a new study by scholars at Rice. Vikas Mittal, the J. Hugh Liedtke Professor of Marketing, is quoted
District Administration (A similar article appeared in SmartBrief.)

New research yields super-strong aluminum alloy
Researchers created a super-strong aluminum alloy that rivals the strength of stainless steel. Edwin Thomas, professor of materials science and nanoengineering and of chemical and biomolecular engineering, is a co-author of the study.
Nanowerk (Similar articles appeared in Purdue News, Nanotechnology News, Controlled Environments, Green Car Congress, and 4-traders.)

Carbon nanotubes devices may have a limit to how ‘nano’ they can be
Carbon nanotubes bound for electronics need to be as clean as possible to maximize their utility in next-generation nanoscale devices, but contact effects may limit how small a nano device can be, according to researchers at the Energy Safety Research Institute (ESRI) at Swansea University in collaboration with researchers at Rice. Andrew Barron, the Charles W. Duncan Jr.-Welch Professor of Chemistry and professor of materials science and nanoengineering and director of the ESRI, is quoted. Barron also is quoted in an article on research that found cleaning nanotubes maximizes their utility in next-generation nanoscale devices.
Space Daily
Cleaning nanotubes improves their efficiency
Materials Today

Results of the 2017 election of AAAS officers
Lydia Kavraki, the Noah Harding Professor of Computer Science and professor of bioengineering, begins her term on the Electorate Nominating Committee for the American Association for the Advancement of Science Feb. 20.
Science Magazine

Brain-related matters
Jacob Robinson, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering and of bioengineering, presented research on an optical brain computer interface system at the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Brain Initiative Workshop in Washington.
IEEE Pulse

How startup accelerators are changing the industry
Rice’s participation in the Seed Accelerator Rankings Project is mentioned.

New trends in construction materials in 2018
Research on calcium-silicate-hydrate behavior by Rice’s Multiscale Materials Laboratory is mentioned.

New books in American religious history: 2018 year in preview, part 1 (January-April)
Graduate student William Black is mentioned.
Religion in American History (This article also appeared in Before It’s News.)


An American tale: From Beijing to Minot
Alumna Stephanie Huang ’13 is featured.
Whiteman Air Force Base

Designing seeds and laboratories for the Green Revolution
Graduate student Nikki Moore authored an article on the development of “super seeds.”
Edge Effects (This article also appeared in NICHE Canada.)

Former US diplomat Sri Preston Kulkarni tries to become Texas’ first Indian American congressman
Sri Kulkarni, son of the late Venkatesh Kulkarni, a novelist who taught in Rice’s Glasscock School of Continuing Studies, is seeking the Democratic nomination to represent Texas’ 22nd Congressional District.
The Indian Panorama

‘Intimate Environments: Considering the Muriel Rukeyser Archive’
Rosemary Hennessy, the L.H. Favrot Professor of Humanities and the English Department chair, wil present “Intimate Environments: Considering the Muriel Rukeyser Archive” Feb. 8 in Peterborough, Ontario.
Trent University


Rice snaps losing streak with victory over Florida International
The Rice men’s basketball team defeated Florida International University 73-64 Jan. 25 at Tudor Fieldhouse. Coach Scott Pera and players Bishop Mency, Malik Osborne, Austin Meyer, Robert Martin, Ako Adams and Connor Cashaw are mentioned.
Houston Chronicle (Subscription is required. This article appeared in the Jan. 26 print edition with a different headline, “Owls improve on their closing finish this time.”)
Jan. 25: Rice 73, Florida International 64
Houston Chronicle
Osborne’s 16 leads Rice past Florida International, 73-64
USA Today (This Associated Press article appeared in more than 60 media outlets.)
KPRC-TV (Houston) (Click the video button to watch the broadcast.)

Rice women continue to grow under coach
Rice women’s basketball coach Tina Langley is featured. Player Erica Ogwumike is pictured, and players Lauren Grigsby, Nicole Iademarco, Nancy Mulkey and Olivia Ogwumike are mentioned.
Houston Chronicle (Subscription is required. This article appeared in the Jan. 26 print edition with a different headline, “Owls’ continued growth reflects coach’s influence.”)

UTEP women face C-USA leader
The Rice women’s basketball team faces the University of Texas at El Paso Jan. 26 at Tudor Fieldhouse. Player Olivia Ogwumike is mentioned.
El Paso Times
Miners travel for big game Friday at Rice
El Paso Proud

Southeast Texas 2018 high school track and field schedule
The Victor Lopez Classic, hosted by Rice March 22-24, is mentioned.
Houston Chronicle (This article also appeared in the Beaumont Enterprise.)

Last reflections by John Royal
The Rice baseball and men’s basketball teams are mentioned.
Houston Press

Women travel to Houston for quad meet
An article on Louisiana State University’s women’s swimming team mentions it will compete against Rice Jan. 26. The meet also is mentioned in an article on the NFL Pro Bowl skills competition.
Watch former LSU WR Jarvis Landry dominate Pro Bowl dodgeball game
SEC Country (This article also appeared in austin360.)

The College Report: White Oak’s Sanders stands out on track for SFA
Rice pole vaulter James McNaney is mentioned.
Longview News-Journal

Pfeiffer selects Ferris as volleyball coach
Former Rice assistant volleyball coach Melissa Ferris was named head coach at Pfeiffer University.
Stanly News and Press


Rice U. psychologist: Back and forth over DACA increases ‘mistrust and hopelessness’ for those affected
As President Donald Trump and politicians in Washington debate the future of immigration in the United States, Luz Garcini, a postdoctoral research fellow in psychology at Rice, is available to discuss the mental health risks for individuals living in the U.S. without proper documentation. Garcini said she hopes a decision will be reached regarding DREAMers in the U.S. because the current situation and “back and forth” in terms of decision-making increases uncertainty among the community, which is associated with high anxiety and fear among the population.

February events at Rice’s Shepherd School of Music
Free events at Rice’s Shepherd School of Music in February include performances by the Shepherd School Chamber Players, which is a new initiative and extension of the Shepherd School Chamber Orchestra. Additional free events include upcoming master classes by distinguished guest artists, faculty recitals and “Sharing the Spotlight” performances. All performances are open to the public and held in Alice Pratt Brown Hall.

About Matt Wilson

Matt Wilson is a senior editor in Rice University's Office of Public Affairs.