Dear Stanford students,

Welcome back to Stanford. We hope you were able to have a restful and enjoyable winter break.

As classes resume, we know that many in our community continue to experience deep pain and concern about events related to the Israel-Hamas war.

We will continue working to support you and our community as a whole. Two new university committees addressing related issues are hard at work – the Antisemitism, Bias, and Communication Subcommittee of the Jewish Advisory Committee and the Muslim, Arab, and Palestinian Communities Committee. And, our faculty continue working to develop educational opportunities to build understanding and dialogue around these topics.

It also has been an eventful time for higher education in the U.S., as colleges and universities confront a range of challenges.

As Stanford leaders, we continue to be focused on our mission of excellence in research, education, and clinical care. For students, this means we are continually focused on ensuring we have the conditions and infrastructure in place to offer you world-class educational opportunities at Stanford. This remains an enduring and vital priority for both of us.

In 2024, there will be differing views in our community on many issues – on the Israel-Hamas war; on the candidates in this year’s U.S. presidential election; and on numerous other matters.

Our campus must always be physically safe for students. We have taken additional measures to provide for that safety and will continue to do so. Stanford also should provide an intellectual environment that is challenging – one in which we encounter and engage with ideas that are different from our own.

We try to do two things at Stanford that sometimes seem at odds but should not be: We seek to learn from one another by hearing one another’s ideas and views. And, at our best, we seek to demonstrate care, warmth, and respect for each other as members of one Stanford community. Let us continue working to do both in the year ahead.

With best wishes for your studies this winter quarter,

Richard Saller, President
Jenny Martinez, Provost