A Lifetime of Mentorship and Advocacy: Celebrating Richard Tapia’s Service to Rice University and Minority STEM Education

Rice University Professor Richard Tapia, National Medal of Science recipient, to be recognized for 50 years of dedication at April 3 event | Rice News | News and Media Relations

Richard Tapia, a renowned scientist and professor at Rice University, will be honored for his five decades of service to the university in a celebration at 4 p.m. on April 3 at Rice’s Faculty Club. Throughout his career, Tapia has dedicated himself to preparing women and underrepresented minorities for advanced degrees in science, engineering, and mathematics. He has received numerous awards for his work, including the Presidential Award for Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring in 1996 and the National Medal of Science in 2011.

Tapia is also known for his public engagement with science and was recognized for this by the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 1992 and served on the National Science Board from 1996 to 2002. At Rice University, Tapia has held various positions, including director of the Rice Graduate Education for Minorities and Empowering Leadership Alliance Programs and associate director of graduate studies.

In addition to his work at Rice University, Tapia founded the Center for Excellence and Equity in Education at Rice, which offers Tapia Camps for rising eighth-12th graders. These residential STEM camps provide students from all backgrounds with the opportunity to work on STEM projects and experience life as a Rice student for a week. For media inquiries about the upcoming celebration of Richard Tapia’s career, contact Amy McCaig, senior media relations specialist at Rice University.

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