President David Leebron

Message from the President

In his 1912 inaugural address, Rice University president Edgar Odell Lovett set forth an ambitious vision, proclaiming, “The new institution … aspires to university standing of the highest grade… For the present it is proposed to assign no upper limit to its educational endeavor.”

Rice has followed Lovett’s vision even as it has transformed over the years. As a leading research university with a distinctive commitment to undergraduate education, Rice continues to aspire to pathbreaking research, unsurpassed teaching and contributions to the betterment of the world.

- David W. Leebron, President

Message to the Rice Community

May 30, 2020

To the Rice community:

We draw many things from being a community.  We do things collaboratively. We define and share our values. We take collective joy in our successes. We commiserate when there are reasons for sadness. And we come together in times of crisis and danger.

Over the summer, when our students and also to some extent our faculty are dispersed, the immediate sense of community and our ability to rely on it is diminished. This year that is even more so since our education has been completely online since March. And although our students may still be seeing each other in classes on screens, many of the casual interactions that build our connections to each other no longer take place.

There is of course great sadness sweeping across our world and our country because of the pandemic. Many have lost friends and family members. Many more are living in isolation and under constant threat of danger to their health. Tens of millions have lost their jobs and collectively our country is facing a level of unemployment and financial distress we have not seen in 90 years. And these burdens have fallen unequally on different communities.

Read Full Remarks

President’s Notes

A Changed World

President Leebron and Y.Ping

Amid the uncertainties brought about by COVID-19, Rice transforms its campus in every imaginable way and reaches out to help its neighbors.

Read full Rice Magazine article

Town Hall 2020

President Leebron presents an update on our past year and Rice’s response and planning surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic.

Download slides from Town Hall

Archived Town Hall Meetings