Wiess School of Natural Sciences
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Biochemistry & Cell Biology
Earth Science
Ecology & Evolutionary Biology
Physics & Astronomy

Dean Peter J. Rossky

RosskyI am energized by the opportunity to join Rice University and the Wiess School of Natural Sciences at this exciting time, early in Rice’s 2nd century. The Wiess School is an exceptional place of scholarship and teaching, and a resource for the community that is Houston, the State of Texas, and the world beyond. Brilliant faculty and students make the School a vibrant enterprise in research and education at all levels. It is also a time of change, with the traditional areas in science and engineering rapidly giving way to innovative thinking and breakthrough discoveries that transcend traditional school and departmental boundaries. Rice scientists and students represent the best minds from across the disciplines and across the globe. Some are at Rice to prepare to join the community in diverse leadership roles in business and education, while others are here to pursue the cutting-edge basic research that advances our knowledge of fundamental science and underlies the future breakthrough technologies that will solve societal challenges including those in energy, the environment, and health. 

I invite you to browse the Wiess School website and learn about our outstanding educational programs for undergraduate and graduate students, and the many transformative research programs that are being spearheaded by our remarkable faculty. We are committed to an extraordinary undergraduate experience for all of our science majors and for the many more who rely on the School of Natural Sciences for core learning experiences, enhanced by instruction by active researchers, critical to success in reaching their professional goals. For our graduate students, the most critical element of their education is their evolution into independent investigators by mentored participation in our outstanding research programs. With the abilities afforded by Rice’s world-class research facilities, we are literally exploring the universe, spanning scales from those of interstellar space, to the nanometer scales of intricate biological molecular machines, to the subatomic scales of elementary particle interactions.

The community of talented students and faculty that is the Wiess School of Natural Sciences is committed to excellence in research, education, and service. We thank you for visiting the Wiess School here and invite you to explore and discover the school further. We are delighted to share the excitement of Rice science with you.

Peter J. Rossky, Ph.D.
Dean, Wiess School of Natural Sciences
Harry C. and Olga K. Wiess Chair
Professor of Chemistry

RICE NEWS ARTICLE - May 9, 2014 


Ph.D. (Chemical Physics), Harvard University, 1978
B.A., Cornell University, 1971


  • Member of the National Academy of Sciences
  • Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences
  • Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science
  • Fellow of the American Physical Society
  • ACS Physical Division Award in Theoretical Chemistry
  • ACS Hildebrand Award in the Experimental and Theoretical Chemistry of Liquids