Introduction to Research and
Design in Engineering

iRIDE logo

iRIDE students working on their capstone project

iRIDE Academy

The iRIDE summer program is a hands-on program designed to introduce middle school students in 6th-7th grade (current 2023-2024 school year) to the challenging and diverse field of engineering. The program immerses students in engineering objectives, processes, and challenges. The Academy's culmination is completing a capstone project that addresses real-world problems directly affecting them and/or their community. As the program guides students through the challenges and applications of engineering design, it works to influence students’ educational path toward a STEM endorsement in high school and to increase their awareness of and interest in engineering careers.

Through iRIDE, students become familiar with the engineering design accomplishments and learn how engineering impacts our daily lives. Rotating topics highlight diverse engineering fields as the program features projects and guest presenters. For example, the "Get to the Chopper Challenge" taught students how helicopters perform high water rescues during severe flooding. That day, a representative from the Harris County Flood Control District discussed the important work that organization does. iRIDE also welcomed engineers from the other Houston area institutions including NASA and TxDOT. iRIDE will continue engaging with engineers from a variety of fields to discuss with students the methods for inventing 21st Century technology and solving 21st Century problems.

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Content and instruction for Weeks A & B will be the same. You are welcome to register for multiple weeks of iRIDE, but please note that the instructional content and activities will be the same for Week A and Week B.

iRIDE Registration

The Summer 2024 iRIDE Academy is open to all current (2023-2024 school year) 6th and 7th grade students.

WEEK A: June 24 - 28, 2024

WEEK B: July 8 - 12, 2024

9 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day

Cost: $499 per week

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Completing the registration form does NOT guarantee placement in the program. Participation in the iRIDE program is contingent upon receipt of the registration fee and completion of the required participant agreement and release forms for minors. Registrants will be required to submit signed participant agreement and release forms for minors with their registration for each child which is part of the registration process.

Space is limited, and the iRIDE Academy will be filled on a first-come, first-serve basis. Please complete an individual registration for each child you are registering.

The Summer iRIDE Academy starts with an orientation tour of the campus and an introduction to engineering as a profession. Students engage with challenging engineering projects, hear from engineers and college students about their work and their educational pathway, take tours of engineering research laboratories, and work as a team on various projects.


Current Rice Faculty and Staff, Rice Alumni, or Military and Veterans: Please email or call the R-STEM office at
713-348-8211 to receive the discount code before registering your child.

Cancellation Policy

All cancellation requests must be submitted in writing (by e-mail) to RSTEM.

A 50% refund will be received if the request is made at least 10 business days prior to the first day of the program.

No refunds will be issued for cancellation requests made less than 10 business days prior to the first day of the program.



Scholarships are available to a limited number of participants. To apply for a scholarship please click the links below to download the application. Do NOT register for the Academy if you are applying for a scholarship. Once scholarships have been awarded registration links will be sent to scholarship recipients.

English Scholarship Application
Spanish Scholarship Application

What is Engineering?

Engineering is the creative process of applying math and science to solve both large and small problems and designing products or solutions that improve our quality of life. Everything around you, from complicated products like smart phones to simple things like the chair you’re sitting in, one way or another resulted from engineering.

There are many different areas of engineering. Each addresses a special industry or area of our society. Each has a special purpose and education requirements. The Rice School of Engineering offers over 12 areas of study. Their requirements and focuses can be found at

Undergraduate and graduate students conduct research in Medicine, Nanotechnology, Energy and the Environment, Artificial Intelligence and Cities of the Future thanks to the resources available at Rice University such as the Oshman Engineering Design Kitchen.

What is Rice University?

First opening its doors in 1912, Rice University is a small, private, four-year institution of higher education located in Houston, Texas. Rice University conducts groundbreaking research, offers unsurpassed teaching, and fosters a collaborative culture that encourages investigators to work across disciplinary boundaries to produce leaders across the spectrum of human endeavor. At the same time Rice’s faculty members dedicate themselves to scholarship and research, they also demonstrate a strong commitment to teaching and outreach. Rice’s small size—with just over 4,000 undergraduate and nearly 3,500 graduate students—allows its students to participate in innovative research alongside world-class faculty and become actively engaged in the creation of new knowledge and technology with 71% of undergraduates participating in research.

Rice University boasts strong humanities and social science programs in addition to a variety of men and women’s sports. Collaborative efforts across interdisciplinary departments result in the numerous programs and activities for K-12 students and teachers each year. Students engage with Rice faculty, staff, and other students while participating in hands-on projects, viewing demonstrations and learning about opportunities in science and engineering.

The iRIDE after school Club and summer Academy are two such programs, offering middle school students education and enrichment in the field of Engineering. Programs are directed by Rice staff and conducted at their schools or on the Rice campus.

For more about Rice visit:

Higher Education Opportunities and Resources

In addition to working with engineering processes and challenges, iRIDE students receive important information about setting career goals and identifying opportunities for higher education. A small portion of the program advises students on academic and class requirements to become an engineer or engineering technician and explains education opportunities after high school, including community college and four-year universities such as Rice.

Why Engineering? Why STEM?

A competitive economy and a vibrant society require proficiency in technical fields including math, science and engineering. iRIDE is more than just an after-school club or summer program for students. It is actively working to fulfill a growing need within the Houston STEM workforce and beyond. For more on the critical need for programs like iRIDE click here.

Click here for information on how you can support iRiDE and its mission.

Program Flyer

To view and download the iRIDE program flyer click here.

iride flyer


Click here to hear from iRIDE participants themselves about the program.

iRIDE Administration

If you have any questions about iRIDE, please contact the program instructor.

Roger Ramirez
Associate Director for Mathematics and Engineering Education
713-348-3267 |

Contact Information

Telephone: (713) 348-8211
Fax: (713) 348-3825

Mailing Address

Office of STEM Engagement
Rice University
P.O. Box 1892, MS-7836
Houston, TX 77251-1892

Street Address

IBC Plaza Houston
5615 Kirby Dr., Suite 730
Houston, TX 77005-2445