Dear fellow Rice Owls,
First and foremost, I hope you and your family are safe and well during this difficult time. While our world looks different than it did just one month ago, I am encouraged by the ways the Rice community has responded to the circumstances that every one of us is facing worldwide. Whether you’re on the front lines, pushing through obstacles to keep business going, providing encouragement to others or doing your part in social distancing, I want to thank every member of the Rice community for your help in our fight against COVID-19. Now, more than ever, our Rice community of innovative thinkers and problem solvers is just what society needs to come out of these difficult times stronger than before.
In this issue of the All-Alumni Newsletter, we’ve rounded up a handful of stories that show the prevailing spirit of the Rice community and how Owls have responded to what our world is facing. We also encourage you to follow us on social media @RiceAlumni as we share a variety of ways to make #VirtuOWLConnections with the alumni community. We have something for the bakers, the exercisers, the learners and everyone in between to remind you that the Rice family is here for you — in person when we can be and virtually when we need to be.
Some things haven’t changed in this period, including the many ways Owls can strengthen ties with the Rice network. From getting involved with regional and affinity groups, reaching out to a student or alum on Sallyportal or staying in touch with friends and classmates through the Rice Portal, the opportunities for connection are endless.
As I’m sure you have heard, all Rice events, including regional gatherings, have been canceled or postponed through April 30. In addition, Rice made the difficult but necessary decision to postpone Commencement on campus for the Class of 2020. To show our support, Rice alumni are posting messages of encouragement on a “Kudoboard” platform. I hope you will take the opportunity to view these heartwarming, thoughtful and funny notes — and please leave your own! We’re hoping to gather 2,020 messages by May 1. In the meantime, take care, stay connected, and we look forward to seeing you as soon as it’s safe.
Thank you for everything you do to continue the spirit of our beloved alma mater.
Frank G. Jones ’63
President, Association of Rice Alumni