The Rice Thresher, Vol. 95, No. 7, Ed. 1 Friday, October 5, 2007 Page: 1 of 20
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Vol. XCIV, Issue No. 7
Friday, October 5, 2007
work on green policy
by Jocelyn Wright
THRESHKR EDITORIAL STAFF
Environmentalism has been
a major campus theme lately,
and student and administra-
tive environmental agendas
will meet this Monday when
the Student Association votes
on a resolution requesting
President David Leebron to
sign the "American College &
University President's Climate
This resolution comes more
than three years after the admin-
istrative adoption of an environ-
mental sustainability policy, the
effects of which are now becom-
ing visible on campus.
The commitment in the
resolution outlines steps its
signatories should take in order
to achieve climate neutrality,
including making inventories of
greenhouse gas emissions, pur-
chasing Energy Star certified
products, and having all new
campus construction built to at
least LEED Silver standards.
But in March 2004, Rice
adopted a sustainability policy
to foster environmental con-
sciousness and mitigate Rice's
ecological footprint. Thus,
Leebron's office began looking
into the climate commitment
independently of the SA.
In fact, many measures speci-
fied in the commitment have
already been achieved by Rice
or are in their formative steps on
campus, including setting up in-
stitutional structures responsible
for sustainable and ecologically-
Now the groups are working
together, and Leebron said his
office could reach a decision
about signing the climate com-
mitment very soon.
"We're very positive
about the climate change
commitment," Leebron said. "We
do welcome student engagement
see GREEN, page 4
Fall formal Esperanza
booked at Minute Maid
by Liz Mallett
FOR THE THRESHER
This year's Esperanza, the
Rice Program Council's annual
fall formal dance, will return to
Minute Maid Park, which held
the event in 2002.
The dance, scheduled for
Nov. 3 from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m,
will take place in the ball-
park's Champion's Ballroom
Appetizers will be offered, but
the majority of the budget left
over from the venue will go
towards subsidizing tickets in
order to make the dance afford-
able for students.
RPC Formals Committee
co-chair Michelle Kerkstra said
tickets should cost between $20
and $25. At the door, prices will
rise to around $30. Kerkstra, a
Will Rice College sophomore,
said the committee is still
figuring out prices for Minute
Maid, so the ticket prices are
not settled yet.
"If we have enough money,
of course we are going to lower
prices to get people to come,"
Kerkstra said they consid-
ered a few downtown venues
before deciding on Minute
Maid Park but that Minute Maid
was their first choice.
Lovett College sophomore
Jose Hernandez is excited
about the venue.
"The fact that it's in Minute
Maid park is very awesome —
but it would be better if it was
out on the field," he said.
Although Minute Maid pre-
viously served as the venue
for Esperanza, Kerkstra said it
differs from recent years' hotel
"Everyone's really excited
about Minute Maid," Kerkstra
said. "I think it's a really cool
venue not just for girls to get
excited about but for boys to
get excited about, too."
RPC plans to leave part of the
stands open so that people can
walk around. Kerkstra said the
venue overlooks the field and
Amenities provided by the
venue include free parking, se-
curity and first aid. Kakkarsaid
she hopes for a similar turnout
to last year's. Originally, the
committee had booked a room
with a capacity of 350 people,
but moved to a 600-person
room given the 580-person at-
tendance last year.
Kerkstra said RPC will offer
souvenir champagne flutes to
those who buy advance tickets.
Last year, shot glasses were
handed out at the door and not
everyone who bought tickets
early received one, she said.
see RPC, page 6
Dude, yer so screwed
Students gather in front of Willy's Statue on Saturday to meet their dates for Screw Yer Roommate. The Rice
Program Council (RPC) hosts Screw Yer Roommate in the beginning of the fall semester every year to encourage
students to get out and meet new people.
Endowment grows 21.6 percent in past year
by Catherine Bratic
FOR THE THRESHER
Despite recent economic trou-
bles in the hedge fund and sub-
prime loan markets, the Rice
endowment grew 21.6 percent this
past fiscal year now clocking in at
$4.66 billion. Vice President for
Investments and Treasurer Scott
Wise (Will Rice '71) attributed
the growth to the success of its
The endowment, the money with
which the university was founded,
provides funding for faculty chairs,
graduate fellowships and under-
The endowment also posted posi-
tive returns for the first quarter of
the fiscal year ending Sept. 30 in
spite of the stock market's negative
turn. Wise said.
"The good news is there was
not a big negative impact on the
endowment from the credit and
liquidity difficulties in the markets,"
The endowment's success will be
taken into account when formulat-
ing this year's university budget,
which the Board of Trustees ap-
proves in December.
Although this year's budget has
not yet been finalized. Wise said the
growth of the endowment will allow
the university to continue its trend
of increasing financial aid payouts
"I'm very pleased with the re-
turns," Wise said. "Any time you can
do returns in excess of 20 percent for a
year, you have to be happy with it."
The last time the endowment had
returns higher than 20 percent was
in 1998, Wise said.
Wise attributed the endowment's
growth to the success of stocks,
private equity, real estate and
natural resources such as oil and
gas. Currently, the investment is
divided into 48 percent in stocks, 20
percent in hedge funds, 10 percent
in private equity, 8 percent in bonds,
7 percent in real estate and 7 percent
in natural resources.
Over the years, the university has
been shifting investments from public
stock to private partnerships. Wise
said these are more difficult to main-
tain but produce greater returns.
ENDOWMENT OVER THE LAST TEN YEARS
^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ T?°A
2006:3.98 2001:3.24 All endowment statistics represent the
2005: 3.61 2000: 3.37 approximate value of Rice's endowment in
2004: 3.30 1999: 2.94 June of the indicated year (except 2002, which
2003: 2.94 1998: 2.79 was recorded In December). Alt numbers are
2002: 2.94 1997: 2.32 measured in billions of US dollars.
The Shepherd School Symphony
Orchestra will present romantic mas-
terpieces by Dvorak, Strauss, and
Beethoven at 8:00 p.m. today and tomor-
row in the Stude Concert Hall. Tickets
are $8.00 for students. If you prefer a
more diverse performance, the Shephard
School Chamber Orchestra will play
pieces by Mozart, Mendelssohn, and
Linz at the same time Sunday night in
the Stude Concert Hall. Admission is free
What about indie?
Baker 13 ultimatum
KTRU will sponsor a concert tomorrow
from 3-6 p.m at Valhalla. The concert features
bands such as a Pink Cloud and the Blades.
PoP culture standoff
SpoCo v. Phils
Women's cross-country ranked no. 7
Rice 31, Southern Miss 29
Rice 5, Lamar 0
Rice 3. UH 2
Improv comedy and a capella faceoff in
a battle royale this Friday, and it's all going
down in the U>vett Undergrounds tonight
at 9 p.m. Come and check out Spontaneous
Combustion and the Rice Philharmonics in
their first performance of the year.
Quote of the Week
"Coyotes make noises that sound like people
screaming. We got a couple calls from some
guys at the south colleges that said they heard
what sounded like women screaming."
— Rice University Police Department Sergeant
Jesse Salazar (See story, page 101
Isolated T-storms, 73-91 degrees
Isolated T-storms, 72-89 degrees
Scattered T-storms, 7189 degrees
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Whitfield, Stephen. The Rice Thresher, Vol. 95, No. 7, Ed. 1 Friday, October 5, 2007, newspaper, October 5, 2007; Houston, Texas. (https://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth443021/m1/1/: accessed December 8, 2023), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, https://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Rice University Woodson Research Center.