Exploring and Getting the Most Out of Stanford

Research Out of Left Field

Lauren Selden, '23

An early class and a little bit too much coffee can sometimes be a recipe for disaster: jittery hands, bouncing knees, and a mind that not only wanders, but sprints in the opposite direction of the lecture material. I made this mistake towards the end of the fall quarter of my freshman year, but, as luck would have it, the extra caffeine in my system happened to bounce an idea into my head: what if I could go on pilgrimage for research?


Talk to your Advisor

Six large bronze sculptures of robed men, the Burghers of Calais by Auguste Rodin with an arched arcade in the background.
Melissa Stevenson

Once upon a time, I was a Stanford undergraduate.

I was the first in my family to go to a four-year college (I jokingly referred to it as “sleep away college”), I understood very little about university culture (what are office hours anyway?), and was baffled by the rules, regulations, and norms that everyone else seemed to just effortlessly know off hand.

If you can't find your niche at Stanford, go and build it

An Luong, '15

Looking back at my four years on the Farm, there are many things I remember fondly - lazy afternoons fountain hopping, late night PSET brainstorms, sunset bike rides back from the lab. With the sheer amount of experiences that Stanford allows you to have, your undergraduate years fly by with enough memories/memorabilia that you alone could probably fill all of the time capsules in Memorial Church. I felt that way on graduation day, and I still do today. Of all my experiences though, the one I appreciate most doesn't involve a course or even an event.

This Magical Place

Photo credit: Linda A. Cicero
Imee Diego Dubose

Rich in history, Stanford University provides an idyllic environment to elevate your lifelong learning. As a student, you now hold the key to learn from the past, enjoy the present and shape the future. 525,600 minutes multiplied by four years gives you ample time to not only get to know Stanford’s main campus but also Stanford around the world. Leaving home after 18 years or so is full of mixed emotions - you’re ready to move on yet not ready to leave behind the familiar and your loved ones.

Stories Courts Tell: Human rights minor reflects on pathway to honors thesis

Alina Utrata, '17

Human Rights Minor Alina Utrata, '17, recently completed her honors thesis through the Center for Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law entitled "Stories Courts Tell: The Problematic History of the Yugoslav Tribunal in Bosnia and Herzegovina." Utrata's thesis examines the impact that the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) had on Bosnia. She argues that international courts, like the Yugoslav Tribunal, craft a collective narrative about the past in order to shape a transition from conflict to peace.

What Are Office Hours? Why Go?

Desk with a placard that reads "Nothing is Impossible"
Alice Staveley

When I was a college student many years ago—before any of you were born, or your parents had ever met—I almost made it through four years of college never having talked to a professor outside class (and, given that our classes were large, not much in class either).  And to think I was an English major!  The discipline where we talk about talking all the time.  About narrative, stories, identity, meaning.  Until, one day, a college friend, Mike, who shared a Shakespeare class with me and used to tease me about spending long hours alone in my room conjugating Latin verbs (this was true), said

Research Gave Meaning to My Undergraduate Years

Green Library's west stacks. Credit: Ian Terpin
Todd Davies

I knew I was interested in research from the day I arrived as a freshman at Stanford, in 1980. I specify that because I know not all Stanford undergraduates are interested in research, and that is fine too. The university has much to offer undergraduates. But if you are interested in research, you are especially fortunate. Research is at the core of what Stanford is about, and I do not think there is a more welcoming place than Stanford for undergraduates who want to work with faculty doing research. 


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