About Approaching Stanford

Approaching Stanford, required for all new undergraduate students, is the process that will guide you in your preparation for Stanford. Beginning in May for first-years and June for transfers, new students will receive weekly communications with information that will help transition you to the Farm. In the months leading up to your arrival to campus, you will learn more about academics and course enrollment, housing assignments, health requirements, student communities, opportunities, resources, and more. The information provided will culminate in your attendance of New Student Orientation (NSO), which will run September 16, 2020 - September 20, 2020. NSO is required for all incoming first-year and transfer students. The Approaching Stanford team is made up of both student and professional staff, all within the office of Academic Advising.

2019 Orientation Coordinators

Orientation Coordinators (OCs) are the Stanford student staff in Academic Advising who serve on the Approaching Stanford team. We are dedicating our summer to help incoming students prepare for Stanford and to plan New Student Orientation (NSO).

Kate Frimet headshot

Name: Kate Frimet '22
Pronouns: She/her
Hometown: Washingtonville, New York
Major/Academic Interests: Political Science
Favorite summer activity: Lazy days at the beach!
One piece of advice you'd give your frosh self: Keep an umbrella, granola bar, and phone charger in your backpack at all times.


Brandon Jaimes headshot

Name: Brandon Jaimes '22
Pronouns: He/him
Hometown: Hanover Park, Illinois
Major/Academic Interests: Economics
Favorite summer activity: Checking out live music!
One piece of advice you'd give your frosh self: Make sure you allot time for socialization in your schedule! Having close friends can make a big difference in a hectic quarter.


Rico Lopez headshot

Name: Rico López '22
Pronouns: He/him
Hometown: Oakland, California is home, but Denver, Colorado will always hold my heart!
Major/Academic Interests: I love Psychology, Philosphy, Biology, and English, but plan to wait last minute until deciding on a major.
Favorite summer activity: My summers are usually filled with lots of running, rock climbing, movie-watching, and reading.
One piece of advice you'd give your frosh self: I know you're worried about finding a community where you'll fit in, but know that over the next year, you will meet some of the most brilliant, thoughtful, and kind people in your life. Even more, you'll soon be lucky enough to call them your friends :)


JJ Sutton headshot

Name: JJ Sutton '22
Pronouns: He/they
Hometown: Freshno, California
Major/Academic Interests: Political Science and Theater & Performance Studies
Favorite summer activity: Creative projects that I can't do during the school year (because I'd get too distracted)
One piece of advice you'd give your frosh self: Take time for yourself (but also get involved! - but not too involved)


Stephen McReynolds headshot

Name: Stephen McReynolds '22
Pronouns: He/him
Hometown: San Mateo, California
Major/Academic Interests: Science, Technology, and Society
Favorite summer activity: Visiting the coast and checking out the local cuisine!
One piece of advice you'd give your transfer self: Allow yourself time to socialize, network, and meet new people. Developing community is an important part of self-care.


New Student Programs Team

Joanie Ly

Joanie Ly headshotJoanie Ly (she/her/hers), Associate Director of New Student Programs, is responsible for developing and executing New Student Orientation and supervising the student OCs. Throughout the academic year Joanie advises Frosh Council, the leadership group of the first-year class made up of elected representatives from each frosh residence. Frosh Council plans quarterly events and activities, builds class community and identity, and communicates information throughout the first-year class. Joanie completed her Bachelor's degree in Political Science at UC San Diego. She went on to recieve her Masters in Education at Rutgers University. Joanie was an involved student leader at UCSD, including being an orientation leader and resident advisor. Through these experiences, she most enjoyed connecting with students and then connecting these same students with campus resources.

Diana Suedbeck

Photo of Diana SuedbeckDiana Suedbeck (she/her), New Student Programs Manager, is responsible for implementing the Approaching Stanford program, which provides support to first-year and transfer students as they transition to life at Stanford. Being one of the first points of contact for these incoming students, Diana is focused on making sure they feel well-equipped to begin their academic experience at the university. Receiving her Bachelor's degree in Sociology from Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota, Diana's passion for higher education grew as she coached women's lacrosse for her alma mater.

Niles Wilson

Photo of Niles WilsonNiles Wilson (he/him), Program Coordinator for New Student Programs, is responsible for providing administrative and operational support for various welcome programs such as Approaching Stanford, New Student Orientation, and Stanford Newcomer Guides. During the academic year, Niles plans the Frosh Winter Warm Up, coordinates Class Banner sales, and handles financial transactions for the team. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Stanford in 2017.

Edith Wu-Nguyen

Edith Wu-Nguyen (she/her), Associate Dean and Director of New Student Programs in Academic Advising, oversees the preparation, welcome, and transition of new first-year students and transfers to Stanford through the Approaching Stanford process and New Student Orientation. She is also the Resident Fellow (RF) for Okada, the Asian-American themed four-class residence located in the Wilbur Hall complex. Edith earned her Master’s degree from the Harvard School of Public Health and her Bachelor’s degree from Stanford where she studied Human Biology and Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity. Prior to returning to Stanford in 2006, she worked in community-based programs in Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties, including Head Start/Early Head Start, the Lucile Packard Foundation for Children's Health, Asian Americans for Community Involvement, and Public Allies-Silicon Valley.