Stanford extends warm welcome to visitors during Family Weekend

The annual Family Weekend, which will take place Feb. 22-23, opens Friday morning with a welcome address by Provost Persis Drell and closes late Saturday afternoon with performances by student ensembles during Entertainment Extravaganza!

An estimated 4,000 visitors are expected to arrive this week for Family Weekend, two days of programs designed to offer a glimpse into undergraduate life at Stanford, including faculty lectures, campus tours, dining hall meals and community open houses.

Freshman Javier Covarrubias poses for a photo with his parents in 2017

Family Weekend draws many parents and guardians, including Maria and Javier Covarrubias of Chicago, shown with their son Javier at a recent event. (Image credit: L.A. Cicero)

The event opens Friday morning with a welcome address by Provost Persis Drell and ends late Saturday afternoon with performances by student ensembles – dance, a cappella, spoken word and drumming – during Entertainment Extravaganza!

In between, families will explore the campus through guided tours. There are nearly three dozen tours to choose from, including visits to The Anderson Collection in the university’s arts district, the David Rumsey Map Center in Green Library and Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve in the foothills of the Santa Cruz Mountains.

Across campus, community centers are hosting open houses and receptions, including  an open house at the Haas Center for Public Service and a reception at Queer Student Resources.

On the first day of Family Weekend, senior administrators will moderate panel discussions specific to each class year during “Conversations for Families.”

Parents Michelle Huang and Lingjun Du of Cupertino decide where to go next during a recent Family Weekend. (Image credit: L.A. Cicero)

During  “Families of Sophomore Students,” Susie Brubaker-Cole, vice provost for student affairs, will moderate a panel discussion featuring James Campbell, professor of history; Laura Dominguez Chan, associate dean of career education; Rabbi Patricia Karlin-Neumann, senior associate dean for religious life; and Lara Tohme, associate dean of undergraduate advising and research.

Family Weekend also features a conversation with President Marc Tessier-Lavigne.

On Saturday morning, representatives from 27 campus departments – ranging from BEAM Stanford Career Education to Vaden Health Center – will offer a resource fair to share information about services and programs designed to enhance the student experience.

The visitors are also invited to attend “Back to School Classes,” with morning and afternoon sessions offered on Saturday. There are 13 classes to choose from, including:

  • Experience on Demand: What Virtual Reality Is, How It Works and What It Can Do, a lecture by Jeremy Bailenson, a professor of communication and founding director of the Virtual Human Interaction Lab.

Families are also invited to join their students for lunch on Friday and brunch on Saturday in student dining halls.

During the final event of the weekend, the Parents’ Club of Stanford University will present Entertainment Extravaganza! The event showcases six student ensembles: Cardinal Ballet, Legacy Dance Team, Mendicants, O-Tone, Spoken Word Collective and Stanford Taiko.