Clubs and Organizations
Office of Student Activities
The Office of Student Activities, located in the Rice Student Center, oversees the activities of various campus-wide student organizations, student requests for facilities usage, and coordination of various leadership development programs.
In addition to managing the registration process, finances, and general advising for over 300 registered clubs at Rice University, Student Activities provides direct advising to the following organizations:
- Graduate Student Association (GSA) - Graduate student government with many opportunities for graduate student involvement including a variety of social and professional development events and ways to volunteer
- Summit Leadership Symposium - Advanced student leadership development program
The Rice University clubs are divided into eleven genres: Academic/Honorary, Cultural/International, Environmental and Sustainability, Political, Recreational/Sport, Religious/Spiritual, Service, Social Justice, Social/Special Interest, STEM, and Visual/Performing Arts. The full list of registered clubs can be found on OwlNest, Rice's new student engagement platform. Student Activities also provides leadership development opportunities in the form of Lunch and Lead sessions, Base Camp workshops, Summit Leadership Symposium, and partnership events through graduate clubs and the GSA.
A large number of student organizations address special student interests, such as the Black Graduate Student Association, Indian Students at Rice, Chinese Students and Scholars Association, and the GSA. There are also numerous sport-related clubs such as sailing, rugby, volleyball, and soccer. Additionally, department level government organizations also provide involvement opportunities for graduate students.
Student Activities also recognizes a number of religious and spiritual organizations. These include, but are not limited to, Chi Alpha Christian Ministries, the Baptist Student Ministry, Catholic Student Association, Hillel, the Muslim Student Association, and the Boniuk Council for Interfaith. Many of these clubs are assisted by local clergy or staff and form the Joint Campus Ministries.
The Clubs Office is located in the lower level of the Rice Student Center and provides computers, workspace, storage, and a color copier for club convenience.
Rice Student Volunteer Program
By heightening student awareness of community needs and generally raising social consciousness, the Rice Student Volunteer Program (RSVP) has organized volunteer projects for Rice students, faculty, and staff since 1985. Historically, the most popular event of each semester is Outreach Day, a Saturday when students volunteer with multiple nonprofit agencies throughout the Houston area, learning how to take thoughtful action to build a stronger, more just community. RSVP invites each student’s involvement as an officer, a committee member, a project organizer, or an interested participant in any RSVP event.
For more information on the Rice Student Volunteer Program, please visit https://www.rsvp.rice.edu/.
Intercollegiate Speech and Debate
Consistently ranked in the top 10 nationally, the George R. Brown Forensic Society sponsors competition in the categories of Individual Events, Lincoln–Douglas, and Parliamentary Debate. The society provides students with the chance to hone their public speaking skills and to qualify for competition both at the American Forensic Association National Individual Events Tournament and at the National Parliamentary Debate Championships. Recognizing the importance of developing strong communication skills, the society has an open admission policy, inviting students with little or no previous experience as well as those with extensive high school backgrounds to become members of one of the most successful teams at Rice.
For more information on speech and debate, please visit: https://debate.rice.edu/.
Office of Multicultural Affairs
The Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA) has, as its primary mission, coordinating and implementing comprehensive educational, cultural, and social programs designed to emphasize inclusiveness, while promoting intercultural dialogue, awareness, and respect for diversity. Through advocacy, cultural programs, and education, OMA also helps students understand and appreciate racial, ethnic, gender, and other differences, while creating opportunities for students to challenge prejudice and expand their cultural knowledge and appreciation.
OMA utilizes its programming and support systems to provide an optimum developmental environment where all members of the University community may develop to the highest level of their potential in an atmosphere free from harassment and bias, thereby ensuring Rice's standing as an intellectually and culturally vibrant community. Cultural student clubs, such as the Black Student Association, the Hispanic Association for Cultural Enrichment at Rice, and the Rice Native American Student Association, meet regularly with OMA to discuss programming logistics and other issues. OMA also directly advises ADVANCE (Advancing Diversity and the Need for Cultural Exchange), a student club that hosts a weekly discussion on a topical issue, and organizes an annual cultural fair. Other programs for students under OMA include HARAMBE, (Swahili for "working together in unity" or "let's pull together"), a group that seeks to create a unifying event for entering African-American students, allowing them to build social and academic connections with peers, faculty, and staff, and FRESH, a group dedicated to forming relationships through education, scholarship, and heuristics at Rice.
For more information about the Office of Multicultural Affairs, please visit https://oma.rice.edu/.