Talks of merger between BCM, Rice end

January 12, 2010 2:20:39 PM PST
There was a big decision Tuesday by Baylor College of Medicine and Rice University. The two institutions started merger talks months ago. But now, those talks are over. Near the two institutions , news of the failed merger spread quickly.

"In my case, I felt a little bit sad because I thought the merger was going to benefit both," said Baylor resident Paul Rodriguez.

Rodriguez had hoped the deal would go through. Now, he's disappointed.

"I think both coming together would have increase the chances of increasing research funds for both programs," he said.

The merger would have meant Rice University would have acquired a world renowned medical school already in its back yard. Baylor, in turn, would have got the backing of a major university.

Rice student Helen Kiesling sees a missed opportunity.

"I think it could have given Rice a lot more credibility, could have got rice a lot more money."

Neither institution would comment Tuesday about why the merger failed.

In a joint statement, the schools wrote, in part, "The months of discussion have provided a great deal of information that we will use to build on existing joint programs, such as neuroscience and global health initiatives, and to create new ones that will best serve both institutions."

Esther Ayuk, a Rice student, supports the move to stay separate.

"We're a small school as is, so I think having our own independent identity is probably good," she said.