Admit Weekend opens Thursday for students invited to join the Class of 2017

Admit Weekend 2013 features tours of the new Bing Concert Hall; an a cappella concert and an engineering fair; a symposium of undergraduate research; open houses galore; and the ever-popular Q&A with President John Hennessy.

High school students admitted to the Class of 2017 – many with family members in tow – will arrive on campus Thursday for Admit Weekend 2013, a three-day introduction to the people, programs and places that define Stanford.

As of last week, 1,330 students had registered for Admit Weekend 2013, along with 1,305 family members, said Colleen Lim, director of admission.

The event opens with an official Stanford welcome from Provost John Etchemendy and Richard H. Shaw, dean of admission and financial aid.

It ends Saturday afternoon with a "What Matters to Me and Why" presentation by Ben Rattray, '02, founder and chief executive officer of, the world's largest petition platform. Rattray, who was named one of Time magazine's 100 most influential people in the world in 2012, will share his insights into the Stanford experience and the role the university played in his life after leaving the Farm.

Admit Weekend is designed to encourage prospective freshmen to begin to explore life at Stanford – its academic, residential and social scenes – by taking part in a variety of innovative and entertaining programs and activities.

Dorms, departments and student community centers will host open houses.

There will be panels of students talking about studying overseas, conducting humanities research projects and bringing entrepreneurial ideas to life. There will be lots of opportunities for tours– of athletics facilities, Green Library and Bing Concert Hall.

Also on the schedule is an a cappella concert and an engineering fair; a symposium of undergraduate research; a faculty/student panel on introductory seminars; and the ever-popular Q&A with President John Hennessy.

The university has offered admission to 2,210 students for the Class of 2017. Admitted students have until May 1 to accept Stanford's offer.

Prospective freshmen (ProFros) can get a taste of life in the classroom by attending seminars taught by faculty members, including:

  • "Materials science & engineering: What is it and how is it revolutionizing medicine?" by Sarah Heilshorn, assistant professor, materials science and engineering;
  • "Was your ancestor a slime mold?" by W. James Nelson, professor of molecular and cellular physiology.
  • "The civil rights revolution as economic history," by Gavin Wright, professor of economics.
  • "Camera as witness: international human rights documentaries," by Jasmina Bojic, director of Camera As Witness Program at Stanford.
  • "Walt Whitman's Body Language," by Gavin Jones, professor of English.

ProFros,  RoHos and the CoHo

Many ProFros bring sleeping bags and pillows so they can share a dorm room with a RoHo – room host – and get a taste of residential life on campus. While the weekend includes many catered events, ProFros receive meal cards for dining halls.

"RoHos will be able to share their Stanford experiences, talk about current projects, and show off their favorite parts of campus," the Admit Weekend program says.

The program encourages prospective freshmen to also reach out to others, such as faculty and staff.

"Like many Stanford students, they may also be busy with research papers, rehearsing for a performance or need to work at their campus job. Use these opportunities to make use of the other points of contact – their roommates and housemates, dorm staff, Admit Weekend volunteers and university faculty and staff. They are all here to answer questions and/or point you in the right direction to answer them on your own."

The 25-page program, which was mailed to students with their acceptance letters, also includes a section titled "Stanford Speak," a guide to popular vocabulary and nicknames on campus. The makeshift dictionary includes "The Claw," the iconic fountain in White Memorial Plaza; "Lake Lag," the mostly waterless Lake Lagunita; and "CoHo," the popular coffee house in Tresidder Memorial Union.

For parents only

The weekend includes events designed specifically for parents, including dorm tours, an alcohol education panel and a Saturday morning breakfast.

The Parents' Club of Stanford University is hosting a mixer on Thursday evening. On Friday afternoon, Stanford administrators and parents of current Stanford students will present a "coffee-table talk" on how students can make the most of their time at Stanford and how parents can stay connected to the university throughout the coming academic year.