What's a Stanford Newcomer Guide (SNG)?

Your Stanford Newcomer Guide (SNG) is a member of our Stanford community who volunteers to mentor and support you from the moment you set foot on campus until you declare a major.

Learn More About Your Stanford Newcomer Guide

What does an SNG do?

Although they have varying experiences, expertise, and styles, each SNG strives to:

  • Welcome you to Stanford.
  • Cultivate a small cohort of 2-8 students that can support and encourage one another.
  • Engage in an ongoing conversation with you about your transition to college (your wellbeing, your interests and priorities, your concerns and challenges, and the integration of your academic and co-curricular experiences into a coherent whole).
  • Support you if you are struggling, by connecting you with resources that can help you thrive.
  • Connect you with the high-impact experiences and opportunities that are best suited to your individual interests and goals.
  • Champion the values of liberal education by modeling what it means to be a lifelong learner, and by celebrating academic exploration, intellectual curiosity, and critical thinking.

When will I be introduced to my SNG?

You will receive an email introduction to your Stanford Newcomer Guide in early September, although it is possible some enthusiastic Guides may reach out to you before then. So keep an eye on your Stanford email!

This September introductory email will include the name of your new Guide and the location of your group meeting during New Student Orientation (NSO). Occasionally, a Guide is unable to meet with you during NSO. That’s okay! There is a lot to absorb and experience during NSO, and you will have many welcoming and supportive people around you—your Academic Advising Director and/or your Academic Advisor for Student-Athletes, your Resident Fellows, your Resident Assistants—to help you process it all. In these cases, your Guide will be in touch to arrange a meeting.

How often will I meet with my SNG?

You’ll meet with your Stanford Newcomer Guide each quarter to check in. In the fourth week of each quarter, you will have an enrollment hold placed on your account in Axess, and you will be unable to enroll in courses for the following quarter until your Guide lifts this hold. This is not to say that the purpose of the quarterly meeting is to get them to “sign off” on your study list; rather it is to ensure that you set aside a small window of time to reflect upon your Stanford experience.

Cultivating a meaningful relationship with your Stanford Newcomer Guide requires a small investment of your time and trust. The reward for this investment is an engaged, enthusiastic partner who cares about your personal and academic well-being. You build this relationship over time, through regular meetings and an ongoing conversation about your experience. (See also: Getting the Most Out of the SNG Meeting.)

Whom can I contact about my SNG experience?

If you have any questions, concerns or feedback regarding the Stanford Newcomer Guides, please email newcomerguides@stanford.edu.