URI’s Facts about Fall 2006

Media Contact: Jhodi Redlich, 401-874-4500 |

KINGSTON, RI — September 13, 2006 — Here’s how many students are at the University of Rhode Island this fall and a few of the things planned for them—from a special honors colloquium series with top-notch speakers, performances and exhibits to continued transportation improvements in Kingston and a full complement of improvements in facilities.

About the Students

  • The University Admissions office received and reviewed more than 15,000 applications for enrollment.
  • About 2,930 freshmen students have enrolled at the University this fall. Of those, about 50 percent are from Rhode Island. Consistent with trends nationwide, 57 percent of the class are women and 43 percent are men.
  • URI freshmen come from 29 states. After Rhode Island, the top states represented in the freshmen class are Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York and Connecticut.
  • About 20 percent of the students in this freshmen class will receive the University’s Centennial Scholarships.
  •  The average combined SAT score for the entering freshman class was 1100 this year and the class includes 6 high school valedictorians and 16 salutatorians.
  • In total, about 11,600 undergraduate and 3,000 graduate students are attending URI this year.
  • About 4,300 undergraduate students, including 2,700 freshmen, live in the 19 URI residence halls on campus and in on-campus apartments. Nearly 750 students live in sororities, fraternities and specialty houses on campus
  • Fun facts — Among the freshmen, don’t be surprised if you think you’re seeing doubles. The University expects to enroll 9 sets of twins this year.Figures are as of August 31, 2006. Final enrollment numbers will be available in late October.

Fall Highlights

  • September 12 Honors Colloquium opening night. This year, the University will explore Songs of Social Justice: The Rhetoric of Music. On the first night, Rapper Chuck D, the founder of Public Enemy will discuss the Political Power of Hip-Hop. Recognized as hip-hop’s most respected intellectual, Chuck D. is an author, activist, producer, and radio personality. The colloquium will feature other notable speakers including folk singer-songwriter Tom Paxton, Tricia Rose of AS220 and folk counterculture legends Peggy Seeger, Rosalie Sorrels, and Ronnie Gilbert. A complete schedule of the lectures, panel discussions and more can be found online at www.uri.edu/hc
  • September 19, Common Ground. URI’s Common Ground is sponsoring the South County Alcohol Retailers Summit on Tuesday, September 19. This day-long summit for area alcohol retailers will raise awareness about environmental strategies to reduce underage drinking and inform and enlist the support of local legislators with regard to some pertinent issues facing the alcohol vendors.
  • September 25-26. International Conference on Security and Disasters. The first international conference on port security, natural disasters and marine transportation will be held at the University, bringing together some of the top maritime, port and transportation security experts from around the world, along with representatives from academia, business and government agencies. The two-day conference is being held in conjunction with a meeting of the President’s Council of the Global U8 Consortium, a group of eight universities from around the world that was formed to address emerging issues confronting the global community through collaborative research, education and building administrative capacity. http://www.uri.edu/outreach/GU8Conference.htm
  • September 25-29. The 10th Annual Diversity Week will be held on the Kingston Campus to celebrate the importance of diversity and identity in higher education, the workplace, the community and the world. This year, the Diversity Week Committee has prepared a reading list and a guide to help teachers to incorporate Diversity Week programs into their course curriculums. The week is brimming with arts, music, dance, film and other activities and features such crowd-pleasing favorites as the Poetry Slam, the Diversity Video and Film Festival, the Pangaea Roots Music Series, dozens of workshops and more. Most events are free and open to the public. For a complete schedule visit www.uri.edu/mcc.
  • • Meeting the University this Fall. Thousands of high school seniors and their families will attend one of the University’s annual “Meet the University” programs that will be held on Sept. 30, Oct. 21, Nov. 4, and Nov. 15. The programs provide potential students with a chance to learn about the admissions process, financial aid, scholarships and more. Visitors can register for the program online.
  • Academically speaking: Starting this fall, the University’s esteemed Graduate School of Oceanography will offer undergraduate students the opportunity to earn a minor in oceanography. Until now, the oceanography program was only open to graduate students.
  • October 13-14. Homecoming 2006. The homecoming tradition continues with alcohol-free festivities at the University’s Kingston Campus that include reunions, college- and department-based gatherings, a 5K race to benefit URI student scholarships, music, food, entertainment and more. The URI v. University of Richmond game starts at noon on Saturday, Oct. 14 at Meade Stadium. Find more at the Alumni website.
  • October 14 Distinguished Achievement Awards. The inaugural University Distinguished Achievement Awards ceremony will be held at the Rhode Island Convention Center in Providence to honor alumni of distinction. For tickets or more information visit online.
  • October 27-29, Family Weekend. This annual program brings thousands to the South County area each fall. Families of undergraduate students have the chance to participate in numerous activities including attending classes with their student, touring various spots and learning about programs on the Kingston and Narragansett Bay campuses, attending a football game and more. For more information visit online.

Construction Zone

  • • Rhode Trip: Back to School, September 5. A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held to celebrate the re-opening of Independence Hall, and a tour will showcase construction projects under way on the Kingston Campus. More than $290 million in new facilities and rehabilitation efforts are underway, including new apartment-style residence halls and numerous other projects. Built in 1960, Independence Hall is the largest classroom building on campus. Now completely renovated, the building includes faculty and department offices, 18 classrooms outfitted with hi-technology teaching tools, a large lecture hall, a multi-media screening room, and language laboratory facilities.
  • Housing now and for the future – North Woods: The first new residence hall built on campus since 1971, the North Woods Apartments and West Side Suites will provide housing for upperclassmen. The project includes construction of two apartment-style residences on the north end of campus and one suite-style facility located behind Browning Hall. Together, the residences will provide about 800-beds. The first portion of this project will be completed later this month. It is the largest building project in the University’s history.
  • New dining dimensions – Hope Commons: A new $22 million, 43,000 sq. ft. dining hall, café and convenience store is now being built. It will replace the services previously provided in Hope and Roger Williams dining halls. Construction will be completed in January 2007. When completed, renovations will continue on what are known as the “Little Four” residence halls in same the neighborhood.
  • Health Sciences Quadrangle: The University plans to transform the north district of the Kingston Campus into a major hub for science, research and technology. The new Center for Biotechnology and Life Sciences will be a major component and linked to three new buildings that will house academic programs in pharmacy, nursing and chemistry. This will form a health sciences quadrangle adjacent to Flagg Rd.
  • Emergency Medical Services: The University’s volunteer Emergency Medical Services has new headquarters. Construction of the permanent quarters, which includes a garage to shelter the ambulance, bunk-rooms and training facilities, will help to attract and retain student volunteers to serve throughout their college years. The quarters are located in new space adjacent to the Central Receiving building on Plains Rd. that will be upgraded and expanded as part of the project.
  • International Engineering II: Based on its success and increased demand, the International Engineering Program (IEP) will be expanding next door to the only remaining fraternity on Upper College Rd. To be completed early next year, the new IEP house will serve 75 students after the $1.85 million renovation. The IEP offers language and engineering dual degrees in German, French, Spanish, and Chinese.
  • Improvements add up — Tyler Hall: An 8,600 sq. ft. addition will soon be made to Tyler Hall, which now houses the Math, Computer Science, and Information and Instructional Technology departments. This project will include demolition of the fraternity building at 22 East Alumni Ave. (formerly Theta Delta Chi).
  • High honors — Lippitt Hall: Planning is underway for renovation of Lippitt Hall, one of the University’s oldest granite structures (c. 1897). After it is completed, Lippitt will once again house the Honors Program and the Department of Mathematics on the main campus.
  • Overall Residential Renovations: Since 2000 the residential area of the Kingston Campus has undergone millions of dollars in renovations and upgrades. The first major project created the Freshman Village. Following that, two residence halls per year have been renovated during a seven-year period. About 3,500 students, including more than 2,700 freshmen, live in URI’s 19 residence halls. In 2006, work was completed on Heathman, Fayerweather, and Gorham and partial renovations were performed on Ellery, Dorr, Tucker, and Peck Halls.