Stanford University
Stanford, CA, USA

Reviews

Stanford University
4.36 Average Rating

Dahlton from Jackson, CA

a current student here
29 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
by far the most diverse, relaxed campus full of happy, friendly students of all ages. clean, green and exuding student pride everywhere you go. the best choice anyone could ever make!
Tips for prospective students
don't panic, be real and accept the fact that if you are accepted you will no longer be the top student or top athlete because you will be surrounded by greatness but you will be accepted and it will be your family before the 1st quarter is over.
Academic Rigor
don't miss a class, attend every lecture you can and enjoy every minute. get to know everyone you can because the next bill gates, steve jobs or andrew luck may be your study buddy.
Dorm Life
family for life before you can head home for winter break.
Food and Dining
you can't go hungry - if lucky enough to get into the native house, you will experience the best cooking in the bay area.
What to do for fun
the stanford bubble is safe and full of new student run activities nightly or venture out into surrounding palo alto, menlo, redwood city or even into san francisco for anything you can dream of.. also a short drive to santa cruz for surfing or beach fun.
Bang for the buck
best degree you can get!!
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
must attend football games and band run. get to know any event with the band or axe crew for student spirit, songs, cheers, and traditions.
Great for these types of students
all students can excel and become anything you want!
Clubs and Activities
thousands of choices... if you don't find it, you can create it and the school will fund it!
Greek Life
amazing
Campus Safety
only crime is bike theft and usually they turn up safely after someone needed to borrow it. hahah
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Vivian

a current student here
25 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
The college experience is more than just classes. Academics are just one part of Stanford life. The real difficult part is balancing your classes with all your extracurricular and social life.

Yes, classes are difficult, but classes at any college will be. Here at Stanford you are surrounded by such brilliance, it pushes you to learn more about life and other perspectives. If Stanford accepts you, they have faith that you can do it! Here it’s hard to get an A, but also hard to get a C.

I have yet to be super disappointed by a class here. (Though the math department is not really for ....normal people....it's pretty heavy in theoretical stuff and a bit disorganized, but it's really because the professors are so deep into mathematics that the department's like that. And the math majors here dig it. There's really a place for everyone here.) Anyways, each class I have taken, even the dreaded Ihum (Intro to humanities) and other GERs have been spectacular, and that is because the professors are really enthusiastic about what they are teaching. And if they don't seem that way on the outside, just visit them in office hours, they go crazy! Try googling some of the professors too. Sometimes us students take it for granted that we have world-renown faculty. My mind was blown when I researched my advisers and professors. It's really great because they are so approachable. The school makes it hard to fail, if you do, it really is your own fault.
Am enjoying being here
It can be a bit intimidating when your classmates have already done so much, but for the most part everyone is laid back and humble that you don’t have to worry. They really are great people. It’s the atmosphere of the school to be really nice and accepting. People around here actually say Hi when they walk past you.

It is great being here because the school trusts and supports you so much- you can basically do anything you want. There are many resources available if you need any sort of help. Stanford’s got the money.
Bang for the buck
Speaking of money, the school's gotta get it from somewhere. Stanford has excellent financial aid….if you’re poor or rich, but not if you’re in between. But the price is very much worth it, with all the resources and opportunities available to you. And a degree from Stanford is pretty much a guaranteed job after graduation. This is an investment in your future.
Tips for prospective students
Stanford wants passionate people. If you can show that you have something that no one else does and that you're passionate about it, and you have good grades, then you have a chance of getting in.
Great for these types of students
Stanford is the place for brilliant, well-rounded people. Hardworking, driven people who want more than what life gives them and will push for it.

The students here are proud of the fact that we can work hard and play hard. It is rare to find a person here who just studies all the time. My first party was a shock, that is for sure- it was a typical college party. But there is no pressure to party or drink, everyone is really accepting :] You can really be who you are here.

So people here are intelligent and know how to let their crazy out.
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Sarah from Stanford, CA

a current student here
23 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
Yes -- you WILL learn a lot at Stanford! From classes about subjects you've wanted to study for years, to classes about topics you've never dreamed of studying, you will learn tremendous amounts. Many classes rely on self-motivated research and application, and some others will be simply informative and fascinating without the requirement of outside research and thought. You'll find a variety of students in any class (some only there for GenEd reqs, some with related majors, some oddballs, some grad students) and will be able to find your place within that, learning both from the usually dedicated professors as well as your fellow students.
Am enjoying being here
It's taken me a while to find my niche as Stanford... and truth be told, I am not certain that I've totally settled in. But I have no doubt that there is a place for me here -- as well as a place for you. It has been somewhat difficult for me to meet people to make friends, but I have found that most everyone here is friendly, and EVERYONE has something incredibly unique about them; it just takes some digging to find out what it is. The campus is beautiful, the opportunities seemingly endless... figure out what you like to do through experimentation and being open, and you will no doubt meet others who love what you do (from sports to knowledges to gaming to juggling to drinking to kite-flying... it's all there).
Bang for the buck
Stanford is expensive. It's hard to pay for. However, the school does what it can to help you out if you are in serious financial need. I am on the border; it's hard to pay for and is financially stressful, but my family can, in the end, afford it. At times I wonder if it's entirely worth it, but I haven't yet found a reason to believe it's a waste.
Tips for prospective students
Dig deep.

Both into yourself to find out what type of school you're looking for, what you want out of college, how you want these crucial years to go, etc, as well as into what the schools you're considering espouse as their own priorities and atmospheres. Visit, if you have the chance. Look up student reviews, websites beyond the university's official website. Be persistent. Get in contact with professors, students.
Great for these types of students
Anyone! Really. While it is academically rigorous, I have friends from all backgrounds -- artists, performers, scientists, philosophers, readers, athletes, more. Know who are you are and what strengths you have and use them! Don't be arrogant, but also don't be bashful or shy. Represent yourself.
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Laura from San Fernando, Ca

a current student here
21 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
It is the most productive, accepting, safe, and fun environment I have ever known. I gained a surrogate family in the community and all the students there. I feel incredibly fortunate to have met the people (students, faculty, and staff) I have met here and have had the opportunities I've had to mature and expand my understanding.
Tips for prospective students
You only will have to pull all-nighters if you are irresponsible with your time management. Do not be afraid to challenge yourself. Find your own way to learn and study to the best of your abilities instead of constantly comparing yourself to others. Make sure to thank the people who helped get you here once you do. You will meet people who will treat you like you are an amazing super-hero that got here all by yourself, but getting you here was a team effort and you should acknowledge that with grace and gratitude.
Academic Rigor
One of my good friends once said I remember when I was good in school. [look of nostalgia]. The classes are not impossible and most of the truly difficult ones are graded on curves or a similar accommodation but they are challenging. Overcoming those challenges, though, and passing classes with fairly decent grades are accomplishments in and of themselves. If you are used to straight As, do NOT expect to get them here with the same with which you did in high school. The classes are tougher and until you learn to accommodate your study habits to that new level of academic rigor, you'll have to settle for getting B's and C's and focusing on improvement and understanding instead of a specific letter grade to make you happy in your classes.
Dorm Life
The housing department does a fantastic job of matching you in your freshman year to a house that fits your needs best and they usually find you a good roommate as well. They might not become your best friend but they put you in an environment of great people with different strengths, weaknesses, cultures, and perspectives. That diversity is invaluable.
Food and Dining
The food here is great and the dining staff are some of the sweetest, friendliest people you'll ever meet. Please take the time to get to know them. Know the hand that feeds you and every time you go to eat you'll have a greater appreciation for all the effort they put in, with good grace, just for you to be happy.
What to do for fun
There is Always something going on on campus. The CoHo (Coffee House) almost always has some kind of entertainment in the evenings. The Axe and Palm (a hang-out/study area/ fast-food source on campus) is also a great place to meet up with friends. On Wednesdays at the axe and palm they have free salsa classes with the salsa group on campus. You can join various dance, music, sports, or hobbies clubs. You can go to a salsa/bachata social or a regular party. The community centers will sometimes hold mixers or barbeques for all students to come to. Trust me, there's Always something to do. Just ask around. =)
Bang for the buck
Stanford is definitely worth all the effort, money, time, and energy. It is worth every penny, every smile, every tear, and every breath of beautiful California air. I love this school and all it has given me. I've grown up more the past three years than I can remember growing up in any other time in my life.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
During the week of Big Game (the game against our arch nemesis Berkeley) we have a bear-ial, in which the band dresses in black and plays dirges while a procession of people follow them and a little teddy bear to the claw (our main fountain). When they get to the Claw, the band leader proceeds to kill the bear by impaling it upon the Claw's top, which is quite pointy, and we all celebrate our coming football victory against Cal (Berkeley).
Great for these types of students
willing to learn, hard workers, good to talk to, persistent, strong, resilient, humble, loves to help others
Clubs and Activities
There are SOO many groups, it's often hard to choose from. I used to be in the Mexican folk dance group (Ballet Folklorico) And Mariachi Cardenal, but I ended up just staying with Mariachi because 2 groups plus pre-med and psych courses proved too much. I love seeing the various dance and music group performances that my friends are in, though.
Greek Life
I don't know much about Greek life at Stanford other than the fact that they exist and the people who participate in it keep it going at a healthy level.
Campus Safety
It's one of the safest places I've never been in. As a woman, it's nice to feel safe walking home at night, alone. Also, the men here are definitely respectful and do not force women to go through unwanted cat-calling, whistles, and other rather annoying/ borderline harassing behaviors
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Josh from San Antonio, TX

accepted here and planning to attend soon
20 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Stanford is an incredible place. It has the best research opportunities and economics in the world, and its arts facilities are exceptional and quickly becoming the best in the world as well. This unique experience is worth any amount of work done in high school to achieve it.
Tips for prospective students
Write exceptional essays
Get personal recommendations that reflect your willingness to mentor peers
Become oblong rather than well-rounded: be exceptional in one or two extracurriculars
Illustrate your passion for them
Academic Rigor
Competitive and cooperative environment.
Dorm Life
Excellent facilities.
Food and Dining
Wide variety of options.
What to do for fun
Take a jog, have a jam session, do some research...whatever you want!
Bang for the buck
This degree will definitely help when searching for a career.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
The Dish--a giant radio telescope searching for extraterrestrial life
The campus is called the farm
The Stanford Marching Band (LSJUMB) is one of the most controversial bands in the world...also self-identified as the world's largest rock band.
Great for these types of students
Innovative entrepreneurs
Successful procrastinators as well as organized planners
Renaissance people (musician+scientist, etc)
Open-minded, unique individuals
People who want to change the world
Clubs and Activities
My personal involvement:

Orchestra
Marching Band
Jazz Orchestra
Percussion Ensemble

There are a multiplicity of other clubs and activities and it is encouraged that you start your own if so desired
Greek Life
Optional (of course)
Campus Safety
Excellent safety ratings.
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Charlene from Sandy, UT

a current student here
155 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
The sheer diversity of classes is amazing and the quarter system means that you have the opportunity to take a lot of them without overloading youself
Am enjoying being here
The students are amazing and so are the professors!
Bang for the buck
Places like UCLA are just as expensive for an out of state student but the research opportunities and general class sizes are much smaller. Stanford is worth every penny
Tips for prospective students
Be yourself in your application. Stanford really is looking for students that will bring something unique (themselves!) to campus
Great for these types of students
Stanford is great for students who are serious about their schoolwork and passionate about their interests and love a collaborative environment. Stanford definately more relaxed than comparable east coast schools and that fosters creativity and an open community. So its perfect for students who might have felt a bit restricted by their highschool for whatever reason. It is a chance to grow and explore and have plenty of support if that brilliant idea of yours is begging to be more than just an idea in your head.
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William from Reno, NV

a current student here
113 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
One does not get to be a professor at Stanford without being pretty brilliant. Some are better teachers than others, but even my least favorite classes (the freshman core humanities and writing) have given me their share of enlightenment, and my favorite ones (I highly recommend Computer Science 106A) are nothing short of fascinating.
Am enjoying being here
If there's anything more remarkable than Stanford's academics, it's the enjoyment that comes with being a student there. The campus and weather are lovely, the classes are interesting, and the extracurriculars are abundant. I've particularly enjoyed being part of Stanford's wonderfully wacky band, who will teach you to play an instrument if you want.
Bang for the buck
I won't lie: Stanford is expensive. Their need-based-only scholarship policy makes paying for Stanford about the same difficulty for everyone except the super-rich, so those whose families have very little money are not that much worse off - in fact, overcoming economic hardship often makes for a particularly good application. I was lucky to have parents who were very smart in saving for my college education, but the economic downturn means I will still need extra funds in order to pay for all four years. (I am on Cappex, after all, primarily for scholarships.) Still, Stanford has more than enough bang to make up for its buck. Don't let the money keep you from applying.
Tips for prospective students
I recommend applying Early Action if Stanford is your first choice. Your chances of being accepted will not be significantly better (so they tell us, and I believe them), but if you get in, the notification comes early enough that you may be able to skip some of the more arduous college applications. Harvey Mudd and Caltech were on my list, and I was very glad not to have to answer their tricky essay questions.
Great for these types of students
Students who expect fun and a good education not to be mutually exclusive; students who have worked hard, given themselves lots of opportunities, and want lots of time to explore their possibilities before they settle down; students who want to live and study in a diverse, tolerant, and modern environment, with common-sense rules and a great deal of trust. I also found Stanford made the transition to independent living very gentle, making it a great choice for the not-so-independent teenager (but don't interpret this as a negative if you're the opposite!).
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Elise from Portland, OR

a current student here
70 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
Professors and students alike are passionate about what they do, and are eager to share it if you show interest. You will learn as much from the people in your dorm as you will being in class, and it's wonderful.
Am enjoying being here
Stanford is a great mix of work and play. When you're studying, it's wonderful to be around people who are excited about learning. When you're partying, its great to be with people who know how to let loose and be a little crazy.
Bang for the buck
Although tuition is steep, Stanford's financial aid is extremely generous, so cost really shouldn't hinder anyone's ability to attend. Furthermore, the opportunities Stanford has for motivated students is well worth the cost.
Tips for prospective students
Don't change your lifestyle to fit the mold you think Stanford wants. Do what you're passionate about, and do it well.
Great for these types of students
If you have burning ideas, and questions, and you want to work hard, Stanford will provide you with resources and opportunities to do almost anything.
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Tonya

a current student here
57 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
The best thing about Stanford is that you learn so much from your peers. Of course you will take engaging courses, but your friends will teach you just as much through their diversity and personal accomplishments.
Am enjoying being here
Love the people (including upperclassmen), love the campus, love the classes (my required introductory to the humanities course is more iffy, but some people really like theirs, and everything else is so dang INTERESTING and even FUN), love the activities and events, love the weather!
Bang for the buck
Stanford has one of the best financial aid programs around. Period. Several of my friends found it was cheaper to attend Stanford than their state school.
Tips for prospective students
BE YOURSELF in your application. If you're quirky, you're quirky. If you're not, you're not. Be deeply honest about your life goals. Getting into college isn't just about meeting their standards but also playing a part in their student body, and if you're not going to be a good fit, you're not going to be happy. Luckily, Stanford's students are diverse in every possible way... except maybe in level of intellectual vitality.
Also, if you're a fantastic student but are still not sure about your chances, APPLY. Trust me, pretty much everyone wonders how they got here, and when everyone feels like that, everyone feels NORMAL—a utopia-like normal!
Great for these types of students
Stanford has all kinds of people, but I would generally say that everyone is very enthusiastic about everything they do. This is actually pretty easy, because there are so many awesome clubs and activities available.
People smile :)
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Lloyd from Oxnard, CA

accepted here and planning to attend soon
38 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Will learn a lot
After attending their Admit Weekend, I was exposed to a variety of options to choose for. Stanford advocates that students obtain knowledge in as many areas as possible. They have doctors who are lawyers and poets who have economics majors.
Will enjoy being here
The campus is great. You're allowed to hop into the fountains and be a crazy teenager. The sunlight especially releases endorphins into the human body, making Stanford a happy environment. The food also, in my opinion, is great; my favorite dishes belonging to the Asian themed kitchen.
Bang for the buck
Stanford helped me out a lot when I applied. They gave me about 40,000 dollars as a financial aid scholarship to help pay for my first year.
Tips for prospective students
Do not be discouraged to apply. They are looking for uniqueness and dedication into whatever you do. I had no hopes of actually making it, but I got in! I have an SAT score of 1810, which is lower than a lot of my friends who did not make it in.
Great for these types of students
Students do not like harsh weather.
Students who have bikes.
Students who have ever had to urge to go swimming in public fountains.
Students who enjoy parties (but you can avoid them if you don't).
Students who enjoy academic challenges.
Students who want to study abroad.
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