"The idea of exploring history, science, literature, philosophy and current issues at this point in my life and career was instantly appealing to me. Upon my first glance at the course descriptions I knew this was a program I had to pursue. When we are in college as undergraduates we are so caught up in launching a career, getting a job and being successful we can’t really grasp what is being offered to us. Now that I’ve achieved all that I set out to do, I am free to learn for the enjoyment and stimulation of learning." - Emily Akin Sattler, television reporter, began winter 2007 at age 52
"I like the idea of a holistic education that broadens my knowledge base. The faculty are amazing! I have been very impressed by how accessible they are."
- Katie Noble, foundation relations officer, began fall 2007 at age 26
"I have learned that I have a lot more to learn and that I have been asleep for the past 20 years. This program has opened my eyes to what else is out there and it has changed my life. It has been the best thing I have done since having kids!"
- Vivian Arcidiacono, brand manager, began fall 2007 at age 48
"As a lawyer with an electrical engineering degree I yearned to study the social sciences and humanities. Rice’s MLS program gave me the opportunity to learn from professors who are giants in their profession and who appreciate the dialog and the intellectual stimulation that comes from teaching professionals from diverse backgrounds."
- David Cabello, intellectual property law attorney, began fall 2006 at age 55
"For most of my adult life, I was so focused. I rarely took any time for myself. When my last child left home for college, I realized I wanted to learn everything I could about everything I had missed: literature, art, science, global politics, environmental issues and more. The Rice MLS program offers this wide variety of courses. For me, there was no other choice ... I wanted the best education available."
- Wanda L. Jones, facilities manager, graduate, began spring 2006 at age 54
"I was so afraid I wouldn’t be good enough for Rice, and in my first class, I discovered I was learning along with a lawyer, an anesthesiologist – many of the students already had masters. I thought I was dead in the water. But I tried to give back to my professors what they were giving to me – 100 percent effort. And I’m not scraping by. I’m doing great. Rice has given me a fearlessness and a confidence I never had before. It has made me question lifelong assumptions, given me the ability to listen discerningly and question critically. It has honed my writing skills. And it has given me a precious circle of friends who are also eager to learn and grow, whatever their ages or circumstances."
- Stephanie Evans, homemaker, graduate, began fall 2005 at age 47
"The attraction of the Rice program was the quality of the professors teaching in the program. The reality has exceeded the expectations with stimulating classes, insightful discussion with classmates and professors, and challenging assignments that enhance the learning potential in each course."
- Jeff Weed, ski instructor and Captain, U. S Navy (ret), began fall 2005 at age 62
"I have challenged myself to enroll in classes I never would have imagined taking – and I've loved every minute of it. Even in classes where I struggled a bit because I didn't have an equal background as others or I didn't grasp some concepts as easily, the small class sizes and accessibility of professors brought me up to speed."
- Larissa Lindsay, security manager, graduate, began fall 2005 at age 45
"Looking at art, listening to music, reading literature, interpreting the news ... all of these activities have been enriched by my involvement in the MLS program. I can't imagine that there would ever be a time when I would not want to be taking one of these classes. Engaging with my professors and fellow students is far more important to me that acquiring the actual degree."
- Kathryn Boehme Bielinski, textile sales representative, began fall 2005
What the MLS students are saying ... using six words. Inspired by the "Six Word Project." From "Master of Liberal Studies: A Personal and Collective Experience," a capstone project by Carlos Fernández.