Location
Stanford, CA
Undergrads
7,003
Tuition
$42,225
Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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Reviews 1011 total reviews with an average rating of 3.9

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5 College Junior

Weather: The weather is very nice year round. It's warm and sunny with blue sky almost every day except for a few weeks during the winter (which is rainy season). If you need seasons, you might get a little stir crazy, but otherwise, it's just like living at a resort. If you really need clouds, you can always go to San Francisco where it's quite foggy and much cooler.

3 College Junior

Greek Life: It's There If You Want It – Greek life is what you make of it at Stanford. If you want to get involved, you absolutely can. There are housed and non-housed options. If you aren't interested in living in a frat or sorority, it's nice to have the option of going to the parties. If you don't want anything to do with Greek life, it's extremely easy to avoid since all the frats are concentrated in one area of campus (the Row).

4 College Junior

Off-Campus Dining: Good Restaurants on University Ave. There are a lot of good places on the main street as soon as you leave campus (University Avenue). There are many different cuisines to pick from. Some of the places are a bit pricier because of the location but there are many (excellent) places that fit within a college budget.

3 College Junior

Campus Dining: Dining Halls: Undergraduate Dining Halls offer standard college meals...Ricker and Florence Moore Dining hall offer better options
Menus: Menus are often repetitive, especially dessert
Variety: Dining halls could work on mastering cooking different cuisines such as Chinese and Mexican (for example)...you have mastered cooking chicken!
Value: Overall, the value is good. I feel that I am getting my money's worth.
Best Places: Ricker (Dining Hall), Florence Moore (Dining Hall), Olives (you can use meal plan dollars here), Bytes Cafe (Cash or Credit Card), The Panini Place in Tressider (mos delicious paninis ever) and, if you are lucky enough to eat here, The Faculty Club (a professor must invite you to eat here first).
Meal Plans: 12, 14 or 19 meal a week plan...if you opt for less than 19 meals a week you will get cardinal dollars which can be used at the eateries--Olives, Subway or The Axe and Palm.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Junior

Computers: Great Wireless Access – Computer Labs: Many present in libraries and dorms
Printing on Campus: Costs money!!! You must have your money on your Stanford ID card and an accounts set up to print...kind of annoying.
Network Reliability & Speed: Getting set up on the Stanford network requires a good twenty minutes, but afterwords internet is available literally everywhere on campus and it is quick.
Wireless access: Great, everyone uses it.
Personal Computer and Printer are very highly recommended.

4 College Junior

Off-Campus Dining: Cost: $12-14 for a great meal
Convenience: University Avenue, which has many great restaurants, is very close to campus and students without cars can ride there bikes there and have a great meal
Student Discounts: Pizza My Heart and other restaurants on University Avenue offer discounts for Stanford students..students recieve coupons at beginning of year for these places.
Variety: Eating in Palo Alto (off-campus) offers much variety like Indian, Thai, Japanese, Chinese, Greek, Singaporean, Brazilian, Italian...you name it.
Best Places to Check Out: Osteria, Fuki Sushi, any of the gelato places on University Avenue, La Strada, Siam Royale (Thai), Pasta?, Peninsula Fountain & Grill, Taipan (Dim Sum)

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Facilities: Great Campus, Poor Social Scene – The campus is full of things to do with amazing opportunities around every corner but the only social scene is the frat parties where drinking is the main activity.

3 College Sophomore

Transportation: Great for Free – the marguarite is very useful for all transportation needs but is very slow and half the drivers don't even speak english

2 College Sophomore

Parking: No Need for a Car – There is no use for a car for normal campus life and the only use would be for pleasure.

5 Recent Alumnus

Overall Experience: I adored my experience. I was challenged intellectually and though I came in with a lot of expectations for Stanford, I was blown away.

On the more superficial end of things, waking up in January and riding my bike through the quad in 70 degree weather while all the other elite schools were steeped in snow was a golden experience. The campus is beautiful, and the people are more attractive than at other elite schools.

More importantly, professors are stupendous and approachable. You are surrounded by other remarkably intelligent people and discover that for the first time you can hold intellectual conversations and feel understood and not judged. You intellectual interest change as your intellectual pursuits grow.

Stanford will spoil you time and time again and when you leave for grad school like me, you'll realize that Stanford is the most unique place of learning in the world.

2 people found this useful Report
Recent Alumnus

Drug Safety: Did Not Partake – I only heard about weed and this was among small circles. I mean, it is California, so what can one expect?

Recent Alumnus

Off-Campus Housing: I can summarize off campus housing in three words: Expensive and/or in a sketchy area and/or unnecessary since no one lives off campus because there are a plethora of on-campus options.

4 College Junior

Athletics: Directors Cup: 16 Consecutive Years – The title pretty much sums our athletic success. We have national titles almost every year, our student support is not as great as it could be. We have student attendance at games of high stakes or coverage (big game, USC, etc). It is sad because teams like our Women's Basketball team who have consistently fought for national titles has less attendance than a men's basketball game. Not hating our men's team, but I'd go support the team with a better winning record. Furthermore, we don't have a cheer/band program that is great. Our band is hilarious and often the reason why our games are so alive, but our cheer program needs WORK. The team often just sits off to the side and literally only have the presence of being the cheerleaders for Stanford, but not really captivating the crowds to often.

3 College Junior

Guys & Girls: A Decent Menu – Our School has an interesting menu. It depends what you like. We have the typical football player hunks, as well as the lean and muscled basketball players. Come on, our athletes are some of the best in the country, but leaving that scene you enter the rest of the Stanford Student population. This is what causes the grade to drop so drastically. Basically, there are students without much fashion sense (some cause they are international students), and furthermore many are so focused on their studies your appearance becomes second. Who can blame them, Stanford requires a cost to have on your resume, and it's often appearance. It doesn't matter though, cause many will have money to pay for beauty (LOL). Anywho, social life is dull, and we don't have relationships here. It is very rare to hear students at Stanford dating for longterm. You often hear of hooking up and the night NOT to remember. When you think of it, Stanford Students have to release the stress somehow, haha.

6 people found this useful Report
3 College Junior

Local Atmosphere: Stanford is a gorgeous campus. Our school does pride itself in its beauty, though I think that money could be better used to fund student programs and financial aid. Though I guess the appearance of a campus is important to continue attracting students. Furthermore, the social life is rather dull. Our greek system is not developed like many schools in the south or east coast. Stanford students also don't have extravagent parties, they will have one here and there but that usually involves off-campus students as well. As far as the academic rigour, well its true, its tough but doable. I give Stanford a B-, because though it has great academic standings, its social scene is not all that great, the support I have had has been one that is not fitting to students that come from poverished environments, and finally because there is an overwhelming waste of funds. There are children dying of hunger in countries and students at Stanford take their food for granted and throw a lot away. Stanford has tried to become sustainable and improve on their waste, but it still is a problem. Furthermore, the budget and the fact that so much goes to keeping the campus so nice when some of its employees are not given the pay they deserve for working so hard also disgusts me. I would like to see President Hennessy cleaning the Law School or other Stanford Facilities after-hours and survive with the pay of these employees for a week. Well this is enough, Stanford is my school and I am glad to have come here, but it still has a lot to work on, which is not a bad thing. A lot of schools have a lot to work on, nothing is perfect. The one good note is, Stanford does make the effort to make things better.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Nightlife: Always Something Going on, but Fairly Predictable – At Stanford, there are always students who will throw a party in the middle of the week and on weekends. While there are few nearby bars, most of the parties have alcohol. The parties are fairly typical and include dancing, drinking and games. We also have several themed parties throughout the year (e.g. Club Caliente, Exotic Erotic, Frosh Formal, etc)

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Diversity: Very Diverse in All Aspects – The students at Stanford come from all backgrounds. They vary greatly in race, religion, political views, economic backgrounds, and sexual orientations. Stanford also has centers and clubs for the various groups where you can choose to really connect to others who are similar to you. You can also be a member of such clubs and organizations if you do not relate to the group's ethnicity/religion/etc. (e.g. My room mate is a Haitian American who is a member of our Japanese drumming team).

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Weather: Usually Great – The weather is great for college. Usually warm during the day but cool at night and in the morning so the lack of a/c in the dorms is not a big deal. It can get pretty cold and rainy at times, but the sunny perfect weather toward the end of the year is worth the wait. It is kind of annoying how the weather canchange from hot to cold so quickly though

4 College Sophomore

Academics: Great Program – I didn't even know what Sociology really was before I got to Stanford, I just took a sociology class to fill up my schedule and it ended up being my favorite class of the quarter. Sociology at Stanford is about finding your interests regarding social problems then diving head first into studying whey aspect of those problems and making independent decisions about solving them. Professors are so helpful, knowledgable and available to help with any questions or further study, and their passion for their classes make me passionate as well.

4 College Junior

Campus Strictness: Honor Code but Quite Chill – There's an honor code that you have to follow, with basic rules: no plagiarizing and do your own work, but overall, it's not that strict. Professors will extend deadlines if you ask early enough with good reason, etc. In terms of alcohol, underage drinking is allowed but don't do it in open public spaces. Don't even carry it open public places underage or you'll get an MIP. Party code is somewhat strict, and it takes effort to put on a large scale party.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Junior

Greek Life: Social, Partying, Cliquey – The Greek life is very popular, and if you like to party and meet people, this is where you go. It's interesting but if you don't like partying, then this is best avoided.

4 College Junior

Facilities: Lots to Do – There's nothing lacking at Stanford. Beautiful libraries, a plethora of activities, and the gym is huge with lots of PE classes and things like rock climbing, squash courts, and racquetball courts. You want something? You'll most likely find it somewhere on campus. And it's just a beautiful place to walk and discover things.

3 College Junior

Parking: Good Luck? Parking can be a real hassle at Stanford. There are several different types of parking permits based on region, and for the reasonably priced cheaper permits, it can be hard to find paring close to where you want to go. Luckily, Stanford is working on building more, like the Wilbur Parking Lot.

3 College Junior

Campus Housing: Get to the Single – Campus housing around Stanford is not bad. There isn't really much to complain about, but there isn't anything to rave about either. All-in-all, the most important things are getting a single or two-room double.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Junior

Academics: Get Smart – Stanford's introductory CS program is awesome! Very knowledgable and approachable faculty aside, there are numerous opportunities for students to enrich their learning experience. Trained undergraduate section leaders can relate to the undergraduate life better than graduate students and endless help at the Lair makes learning the material a breeze.

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Overall ExperienceWhat's This?

Alexandria Butler
Hometown
St. Louis, MO
Major
Communications, Spanish
View all previous student authors

The verdict is in: most students are overwhelmingly happy with their Stanford experience. The combination of challenging academics, undergrad-oriented faculty, diversity, beautiful weather, and a fairly social campus environment all combine to make for a great four years of college. Students, particularly those in engineering or sciences, might find the workload to be especially heavy at times, but most students are capable and want to work hard in the first place. Perhaps the biggest challenge students face at Stanford is just dealing with the other students, who range from hippies to hyper-competitive pre-meds. It makes for an interesting environment, but also a stressful one. However, if you immerse yourself in it long enough, it will eventually start to feel reasonably normal.

Despite the problems that Stanford students find with the University, they overwhelmingly agree that Stanford is “their place,” and they can’t imagine being anywhere else. It seems all the hype and the hefty price tag are well justified by the experiences that students can, and will, have here. If you’re looking for a university with a big name, vibrant population, and a good balance of work and fun, Stanford University will not disappoint.

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