Chair's Welcome Message:
Welcome to Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) at Rice University. Civil and environmental engineering disciplines are very broad and address virtually any system or infrastructure related to earth, water, air, or civilization and their processes. At Rice, we provide this breadth but also emphasize depth in our curricular and co-curricular offerings.
We provide a rigorous, coherent curriculum that gives students a strong understanding of biological, chemical, physical, economic, and social systems that affect engineering research and practice. Our curriculum is centered around four areas of specialization: environmental engineering, hydrology and water resources, structural engineering and mechanics, and urban infrastructure and management. It also allows students opportunities to improve their written, oral, and interpersonal communication skills, especially through collaboration and teamwork. The strengthening of such leadership characteristics makes studying in our department a very special educational experience. We also provide opportunities for international service learning experiences focusing on complex engineering problems that occur in diverse cultural and social situations.
Research opportunities abound in our department. Our graduate and undergraduate students perform experiments in state-of-the-art laboratories, develop and implement novel computational techniques, and travel nationally and internationally to perform in situ field work.
Professional development is a cornerstone of our student experience through mentoring and opportunities with national organizations such as ASCE and Chi Epsilon. We support active student professional groups at both the undergraduate and graduate levels and encourage their interaction.
CEE at Rice is about building bridges—both figuratively and literally. Rice undergraduates in Engineers Without Borders (EWB) use their expertise to build bridges (and other infrastructure) in the developing world. Our researchers are building bridges into the future with their efforts to contribute to solutions of challenges of global, national, and local importance. Individuals build bridges to each other through mentoring opportunities and group work.
I hope you consider joining us on our beautiful campus and I look forward to seeing you in some of our classes and laboratories in the years ahead.
Dr. Robert Griffin, Professor and Chair
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering