Stanford, CA
Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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5 College Sophomore

Facilities: The student centers are bustling and green spaces are filled with studying students.

5 College Sophomore

Facilities: Great facility, facilities for studying and brainstorming.

5 College Freshman

Facilities: There are endless gorgeous places to study whether it be in Green Library or in the Law School or by one of the many fountains. The Arrillaga Outdoor Recreation Center just recently opened up one of the largest indoor rock climbing walls in the nation. Facilities and community centers are always easily accessible to students. We also have great Stanford traditions such as fountain hopping, events leading up to Big Game, dorm life, Full Moon on the Quad, and Gaieties. There is so much happening on campus and I am in the midst of innovation and phenomenal people. The all freshman dorms do SUCH an incredible job fostering a community and a family that I can easily say I feel "at home".

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Facilities: The social scene is always lively at Stanford. Even if you are not into partying, there are endless other opportunities and activities. Cardinal nights hosts concerts and movie nights. Also, I have found the social dance community (salsa/swing dancing etc) to be a blast.

1 person found this useful Report
5 Recent Alumnus

Facilities: Great student life. Gorgeous campus. New athletic center for students. Student union okay, but not hub. Lots of campus events and traditions. Lots of social activities.

10 people found this useful Report

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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 7th
    Greenest Campuses
  • 18th
    Best Library
  • 22nd
    Best Athletic Facilities
  • 103rd
    Best Performance Venues
  • 140th
    Best Student Centers

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

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

Stanford is internationally known for its gorgeous facilities and landscape. Palm trees line the main road, and most dorms are inspired by Spanish architecture, with courtyards and gardens. Overall, Stanford's well-kept facilities include two major student centers—both with study rooms, conference rooms, televisions, and restaurants. Every dorm has a computer cluster, and every facility on campus has wireless Internet. Clearly, Stanford makes sure that students have everything they need.  

Students study in various locations around campus. While some enjoy the library facilities, others study in departments, community centers, dorm lounges, coffeehouses, and on a nice day, outside in the fields. While the student unions are sometimes criticized for not having convenient hours, everyone finds their "place" on campus to hang out with friends or do homework.

Facts & Statistics

Service & Maintenance Staff
Campus Size
8,180 acres
Student Centers
  • Old Union
  • Tresidder Memorial Union
Campus Library?
Main Libraries
  • Green Library
  • Meyer Library
Popular Places to Chill
  • The CoHo
  • Community centers
  • Dorm lounges
  • The Oval
  • The Treehouse
  • Tresidder Memorial Union
Bar on Campus
  • The CoHo is Stanford's very own coffeehouse that serves wine and beer.
  • The Treehouse, an American/Mexican eatery on campus, serves beer.
Bowling on Campus
There is no bowling on campus; however, there are plenty of bowling facilities in the area of Palo Alto that students use on a regular basis.
Coffeehouse on Campus
  • Coupa Café
  • Peet's Coffee & Tea
  • The CoHo
Movie Theater on Campus
"Green" Initiatives
Every year, a group of students organize FutureFest, a festival dedicated to green initiatives with local food vendors and popular local artists. There are many student groups on campus that work on environmental projects and work hard to provide Stanford students with the resources to live a more environmentally-conscious lifestyle.

School Slang
  • "Dropping the S-Bomb": Saying the word "Stanford" in order to get jobs or internships
  • A3C: Asian and Asian American Center is a center that encourages Asian culture on campus; it's also known for its gorgeous "ballroom" that students use for dance parties and events.
  • The Black House: The Black Community Service Center-a cultural center that celebrates Black accomplishments throughout campus. It also hosts multiple events throughout the year. Students of every color are encouraged to stop by The House to hang out, study, watch television, and get free printing!
  • Centro: El Centro Chicano is the Hispanic Community Center on campus that hosts Latin and Latin American cultural events. Centro is known for its Sunday study nights where there are writing tutors, study groups, and food for students.
  • Chappie: The Stanford Chaparral, Stanford's nationally-recognized, award-winning humor magazine
  • CS: Computer Science
  • CSRE: Not to be confused with CS, CSRE stands for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity.
  • Daily Dawg: Someone who works on the Daily, Stanford's weekly newspaper
  • Dormcest: Hooking up with someone in your own dorm
  • The Draw: The lottery process that assigns you to housing after freshman year
  • FLiCKS: Several Sundays throughout the year, this group organizes showings of films currently in theaters.
  • FloMo: Florence Moore Hall
  • FroSoCo: Freshman/Sophomore College-a dorm on campus that's only for freshmen and sophomores
  • HoHo: A current student who helps with newly-admitted students during Admit Weekend
  • HumBio: Human Biology
  • IHUM: Introduction to the Humanities-a required sequence for freshmen
  • JRo: Junipero, a freshman dorm on campus
  • LSJUMB: Leland Stanford Junior University Marching Band-truly a band like no other and known for the unconventional school spirit
  • MemAud: Memorial Auditorium-the main auditorium on campus that hosts many New Student Orientation events, concerts, and graduation events.
  • MemChu: Memorial Church-MemChu has church services every Sunday for Stanford students; it is also a popular wedding location in the Palo Alto area. It is very common to pass by wedding parties on the weekends. Be careful not to bike through a wedding picture.
  • The Oval: The grassy strip in front of the quad. On sunny days, it is common to see students studying, playing volleyball, or just hanging out on the lawn.
  • ProFro: Prospective Freshmen, in particular the ones who visit during Admit Weekend in April
  • Progressive: A dorm party where each room hosts a different mixed drink. Usually, these parties have fun themes such as cartoons, '90s music, and animals.
  • PWR (Power): Program in Writing and Rhetoric-also required for freshmen and sophomores
  • The quad: The red stone plaza where most classes are held
  • SLE: Structured Liberal Education-an all-year residential/academic option for freshmen
  • Su.market: An online newsgroup for buying and selling just about anything
  • TresEx: Tresidder Express, an overpriced convenience store on campus that carries snacks, food, chips, ice cream, etc.
  • Band Run: On the night of your first day at Stanford, the band comes to every freshman dorm and gathers all of the new freshmen at the football stadium.
  • Big Game: During fall quarter, toward the end of the football season, Stanford and Berkeley play each other in the annual Big Game. Each year, the venue alternates between the two campuses. The week leading up to the event is filled with rallies and pranks. The winner of Big Game gets to keep the highly coveted Axe for the following year. At one point, Stanford held the Axe for seven seasons in a row, but finally had to give it up after a particularly pathetic loss to Cal.
  • Exotic Erotic: The most infamous party of the year
  • Fountain Hopping: Put on some old clothes and/or your swimsuit and hop from fountain to fountain around campus. Especially fun at night with a big group of friends.
  • Full Moon on the Quad: On the night of the first full moon in fall quarter, tradition has it that freshman females and senior males come out onto the quad and kiss at midnight. Over the years, the tradition has degenerated into all freshmen and seniors making out, often under the influence of alcohol. Residents from the co-ops usually come and streak the event. Sophomores, juniors, and even grad-students may show up, too. The administration is trying to do away with this tradition.
  • Mausoleum Party: This is the annual Halloween party that is located in front of the tomb of Mr. and Mrs. Leland Stanford. With multiple DJs, lights in the trees, and a dance floor, this Halloween party is a party to remember.
  • Su.market: Su.market is a newsgroup that anyone on campus can access using a standard newsreader. Students, faculty, and staff post items for sale or items they want to buy. It includes everything from concert tickets to cars. Check it out for some great deals.
  • Wacky Walk: A favorite Stanford tradition, Wacky Walk is the procession of the seniors at graduation. Every senior is encouraged to dress up in wacky costumes such as crayons, celebrities, athletes, etc.
Urban Legends
  • Computer science professor Eric Roberts was responsible for failing Bill Gates out of Harvard.
  • Stanford was started by Leland and Jane Stanford after they attempted to donate money to Harvard but were treated rudely because of their dirty clothes.
  • The Old Chemistry Building (OldChem) is haunted.
  • There are underground steam tunnels that you can explore.
  • Thousands of dead horses are buried under the quad from when Stanford was a stock farm.
Favorite Things To Do
You can work out, go swimming, grab a DVD from the library, get a sandwich or some Mexican food at Tresidder, or just lie around in the sun. FLiCKS (student movie service) is also a popular diversion on a Sunday evening when you should be doing your homework. A couple thousand people cram into Memorial Auditorium and have a rowdy paper fight before the show. If that's not your scene, you can check out just about any DVD that exists from Green Library for free. Watch it in your dorm, or on one of the many publicly available projection screens on campus.
Student Newspaper
The Stanford Daily
Clubs and Organizations on Campus
All of the organizations are active, but there are some more popular ones than others. Talisman is an internationally-known a capella group that travels to South Africa every year. The women's rugby club team is nationally ranked year after year, as well. Stanford Concert Network (SCN) helps with the planning of major concerts on campus, and the AXE Committee helps with student spirit at all major sports events.
Student Activities Offered
  • Campus ministries
  • Choral groups
  • Concert band
  • Dance
  • Dance/theater
  • International student organizations
  • Jazz band
  • Literary magazine
  • Marching band
  • Model United National
  • Music ensembles
  • Musical theater
  • Opera
  • Pep band
  • Radio station
  • Student government
  • Student-run film society
  • Symphony orchestra
  • Television station
  • Yearbook
Air Force ROTC: No
Navy ROTC: No
Army ROTC: Yes
Did You Know?
  • Stanford has more than 800 student organizations on campus, offering many different interests including politics, culture/ethnicity, performing arts, community service, visual arts, and fashion.
  • Stanford is home to one of the most beautiful churches in California, and each year, there are hundreds of wedding ceremonies. This does not include the number of people who come to campus just to take engagement, wedding, prom, and quinceañera pictures. So as you bike to your next class, watch out! It's possible that you might be the surprise in the next photo shoot.
  • There are more than 20 libraries on campus. While Green Library and Meyer Library are the main libraries, it is very common for students to study in smaller libraries. The art and law libraries are very popular during finals week because of their convenient locations and atmospheres.
  • Each group on campus receives funding every year from the University. You can use this funding for food for group meetings, events, T-shirts-it's all up to you. If you need more money, you can request funding, find sponsorships, and/or ask other organizations to help out with your financials.
  • If you and your friends cannot find what you are looking for, start a group! There are processes put in place for this purpose. Just inquire, and it will get done.
  • Stanford has an office with a professional staff to help with all student organization inquiries, from money to signing contracts for honorarium to internal group issues. The Student Activities and Leadership Office (SAL) is here to serve your organization's needs!

Student Polls

Rate the campus facilities in the following areas    Based on 54 responses

Very poor
  • Athletics/recreation
  • Classrooms
  • Computer labs
  • Dining
  • General aesthetics/architecture of campus
  • "Green" buildings/initiatives
  • Housing
  • Lawns/green space
  • Library
  • Modernity of facilities
  • Performing arts
  • Science/research labs
  • Student center
  • Study spots
  • Visual arts (work spaces, galleries)

How would you describe the student center/union?    Based on 71 responses

  • 4% The student center is in need of a major renovation.
  • 17% The student center serves its purpose but is not a popular hangout.
  • 62% The student center is great but isn't central to student life.
  • 17% The student center is state-of-the-art and the hub of student life.

What is your overall opinion of your school and the campus community?    Based on 48 responses

  • 0% I hate my school and have no school spirit.
  • 0% The school community is okay-we're all just here for an education, nothing more.
  • 31% I like mostly everything about my school, but there are some things I wish were different.
  • 69% I love everything about my school and have a lot of campus pride.



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