Stanford welcomes new undergraduates on Tuesday

Stanford will welcome new undergraduates to campus Tuesday on “move-in day,” which is also the first day of New Student Orientation. The day will culminate with the 127th Opening Convocation Ceremony, which will be held from 4 to 5 p.m. in the Inner Quad Courtyard.

Stanford is rolling out the red carpet on Tuesday for first-year and transfer students – and their families and friends – with open houses, campus tours in English and Spanish, library visits and a resource fair on the patio of Stanford Bookstore.

The festivities will begin in the early morning hours at the entrance to residence halls, where each student will receive a rousing personal greeting by cheering students who have memorized their name and face in advance of their arrival.

Upperclass students celebrate new arrivals on move-in day 2016. This year, Stanford will welcome 1,705 new students and 28 transfer students on Tuesday. (Image credit: L.A. Cicero)

In late afternoon, Stanford will celebrate the beginning of the 2017-18 academic year at the 127th Opening Convocation Ceremony, which will take place from 4 to 5 p.m. in the Inner Quad Courtyard.

The newest members of the undergraduate student body include 1,703 first-year students – the Class of 2021 – and 27 transfer students, including 13 military service veterans, said Richard H. Shaw, dean of admission and financial aid.

Among those new students are people from 48 states and 60 countries.

Within the Class of 2021, close to 17 percent of the students are the first members of their families to attend a four-year college, Shaw said. Nearly 11 percent are international students. The incoming class is 51 percent female and 49 percent male.

Among the new cohort of transfer students, 44 percent are the first members of their families to attend a four-year college, Shaw said. One is an international student. Seventy percent are men and 30 percent are women.

New Student Orientation

Tuesday is the first day of New Student Orientation (NSO), a weeklong program designed to introduce incoming students to Stanford’s rich academic, cultural and social life. Some students arrived over the weekend and are taking part in the 3½-day International Undergraduate Student Orientation before joining the rest of the new students for NSO on Tuesday.

Parents and family members are invited to take part in many of Tuesday’s NSO activities, including lunch in residence halls, dinner with Provost Persis Drell and a bilingual panel discussion, “No es un Adiós” – “It’s not Goodbye” – hosted by upperclass students and staff.

President Marc Tessier-Lavigne will welcome new students and their families and friends during the Opening Convocation Ceremony. Shaw will also speak at the ceremony, as will Harry J. Elam Jr., vice provost for undergraduate education. Alexis Kallen, a senior majoring in political science and in feminist, gender and sexuality studies, will give the student address.

The Rev. Jane Shaw, dean for religious life will offer the invocation and Joanne Sanders, associate dean for religious life, will offer the benediction. Student soloists will perform Hail, Stanford, Hail, and lead the audience in a second round of the Stanford hymn.

Following Convocation, new students will say goodbye to parents and friends and head to their dorms for “Welcome Home” activities and their first house meetings.

Five more days of NSO

New Student Orientation continues Wednesday through Sunday, and concludes Monday evening with the required program, “Beyond Sex Ed: Consent and Sexuality at Stanford.”

Throughout the week, Stanford will introduce students to the wide array of academic, intellectual, leadership, cultural and social experiences available on the Farm.

They will meet with the advisers assigned to guide them through their first year, including pre-major advisers and academic advising directors. They will hear Provost Drell address the purpose of a liberal education and meet President Tessier-Lavigne at a reception on the lawn of Hoover House.

They will attend a roundtable discussion by the authors of the books assigned to new students under the Three Books program: Homegoing, by Yaa Gyasi; The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History, by Elizabeth Kolbert; and Salvage the Bones, by Jesmyn Ward. Noah Diffenbaugh, a professor of Earth system science who selected the books, will moderate the discussion, which will include a Q&A.

One afternoon, new students will watch Stanford student actors present “The Real World: Stanford,” a program about navigating the nuances of life on the Farm. One evening, they will attend “Faces of Community,” a program of reflections, narratives, dance and music highlighting the university’s diverse community, presented by current students.

This year’s NSO program includes panel presentations by faculty members such as “We are STEM: Faculty Discuss Gender, Identity and Their Journeys in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math.” Professors will also give presentations, including “Democracy, Technology, and Design: The Case of Central Park,” and “What is Art History: Looking at Caravaggio.”

During NSO, new students will have the opportunity to take part in a public service project, sponsored by the Haas Center for Public Service, to package more than 50,000 meals that will be shipped to schools and families in developing countries.

Campus housing opens for returning undergraduate students on Thursday, Sept. 21, and classes begin Monday, Sept. 25.