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Stanford University: Top 5 Things To Do At The Prestigious College

Stanford University: Top 5 Things To Do At The Prestigious College

Learn all about Stanford University, a top-ranked institution offering a top-notch educational experience in the heart of Silicon Valley. Team


3 min read

July 12, 2023

Stanford University, often simply known as Stanford, is nestled in the heart of Silicon Valley, in the bustling city of Stanford, California. Its expansive campus spans over 8,180 acres, making it one of the largest university campuses in the United States. Stanford's strikingly beautiful grounds, characterized by its distinctive sandstone and red tile architecture, are home to approximately 7,000 undergraduate and around 9,400 graduate students from around the world.

Stanford's campus is among the most beautiful in all of California, perfectly mirroring the academic excellence flowing through its walls.

The History and Reputation of Stanford

Founded in 1885 by railroad magnate Leland Stanford and his wife Jane, the university was created as a tribute to their only son, who died of typhoid fever just before his 16th birthday. The university officially opened its doors in 1891 and has since evolved into one of the world's leading teaching and research institutions.

Stanford University is renowned for its excellence in a broad range of disciplines, including computer science, business, medicine, law, education, engineering, and the humanities. Its faculty's outstanding research and innovation contributions solidified its role as a leading academic hub. As of the latest data, Stanford counts 58 Nobel laureates within its community and is home to a wealth of world-class research institutes, including the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, Hoover Institution, and the Stanford Research Institute.

In addition, Stanford's location in Silicon Valley puts it at the epicenter of technological innovation. This proximity has fostered a culture of entrepreneurship among students and faculty alike, with many starting their own companies or joining the ranks of nearby tech giants like Google, Apple, and Facebook.

Stanford's academic achievements are numerous and contribute to its high national rankings.

Student Life at Stanford

Getting around the sprawling Stanford campus is a breeze thanks to the university's comprehensive transportation options. The free Marguerite Shuttle service transports students around the campus and to local shopping districts, Caltrain stations, and other off-campus locations. For those who prefer self-powered transport, the campus is very bike-friendly, boasting numerous bike lanes and racks.

Stanford Dining prides itself on providing nutritious, sustainable, and diverse food options. There are over 20 dining locations across the campus, including dining halls, cafes, and late-night eateries. Many students also explore the wider culinary scene in Palo Alto and surrounding cities, where they can find a plethora of restaurants serving a diverse range of cuisines.

Stanford's location also offers students access to numerous attractions. For nature enthusiasts, the nearby Stanford Dish trail provides a challenging hike with rewarding views, while the serene Arizona Garden offers a quiet space for reflection. Art and culture lovers will appreciate the Cantor Arts Center, the Anderson Collection, and Bing Concert Hall, all of which are located on campus.

Furthermore, Stanford is less than an hour's drive from San Francisco, a city rich in cultural landmarks, exciting festivals, and professional networking opportunities. The proximity to the beach, mountains, and major cities like San Jose and Oakland ensures that there is never a shortage of things to do.

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Top 5 Things to Do at and near Stanford University

1. Explore the Cantor Arts Center

The Cantor Arts Center is a must-visit for art lovers. With 24 galleries and over 38,000 works, this museum offers a vast collection ranging from European to Asian art, modern and contemporary pieces, and one of the largest presentations of Rodin bronzes outside of Paris. The museum also hosts frequent events, lectures, and art classes that cater to a wide range of interests.

Visiting Cantor Arts Center is a great way to spend a day looking at some gorgeous art.

2. Hike the Stanford Dish

One of the most iconic landmarks on the Stanford campus is the Stanford Dish, a large radio telescope. The loop trail leading to the Dish is a favorite hiking and jogging spot among students and locals alike. The 3.7-mile trail offers picturesque views of the campus and the surrounding Silicon Valley.

3. Attend a Cardinal Sporting Event

Stanford University boasts a competitive athletic program, with its teams known as the Cardinal. From football and basketball to swimming and water polo, there's always a thrilling sporting event to attend. Join the student section, the Red Zone, to cheer on the Cardinal and experience the palpable school spirit.

Stanford's athletics delivers high-level D1 programs that support top student athletes.

4. Visit the Stanford Shopping Center

Just a short walk from campus, the Stanford Shopping Center offers a luxurious open-air shopping experience. With over 140 stores, lush gardens, and a range of dining options, this is a popular spot for students looking for a break from their studies.

5. Take a Day Trip to San Francisco

Stanford's proximity to San Francisco makes it easy to explore this vibrant city. Visit the iconic Golden Gate Bridge, enjoy food at the Ferry Building Marketplace, explore the vibrant neighborhoods, or catch a concert at one of the city's many music venues.

Stanford University, in the heart of Silicon Valley, offers more than a high-quality education. It provides a vibrant, enriching environment where students can explore their interests, engage with their community, and create lasting memories. Whether it's appreciating art, getting active outdoors, cheering on a sports team, indulging in some retail therapy, or exploring the wider Bay Area, there's no shortage of things to do. These experiences contribute to what makes Stanford University not just a place of learning, but a place of growth and discovery.

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