Since its beginnings, the focus and function of the school have expanded exponentially. Technology has advanced, interdisciplinary partnerships have increased, and the enrollment of strong students and the hiring of innovative, first-rate faculty strained the capacity of Herring Hall, the schoolâ€™s home since 1984. To accommodate the significant transition and expansion that the Jones Graduate School would take on in the new century, a new building became necessary.
But with the need for a new building was also the knowledge that not only must this building be beautiful and in keeping with Riceâ€™s architecture, it also must be innovative, with an eye toward the Â future, while reflecting the universityâ€™s and the business schoolâ€™s past.
To this end, the award-winning architect and dean of the Yale School of Architecture, Robert A. M. Stern, was chosen to design the new building. Sternâ€™s work is best known for its emphasis on continuity of tradition and for creating buildings that are appropriate to the project at hand, buildings that take into account the spirit of the places in which they are located.