Stanford University was founded in 1891 by Jane and Leland Stanford, in honor of their only son, Leland Stanford Junior, who died of typhoid fever at the age of 15. The money came from Leland Stanford’s success in the gold rush and railroad industries. Leland Stanford Junior University was a coeducational institution at a time when nearly all colleges were all-male, and it was to be nondenominational when most schools were affiliated with a church or religion.
Stanford is located on more than 8,000 acres of former farmland, on a peninsula about 35 miles south of San Francisco, CA. While many of the original Spanish mission-style buildings stand, there was extensive damage during the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. Today, there is abundant construction, particularly for graduate school and arts buildings.
There are about 6,500 undergraduate students at Stanford. The most popular areas of study include: Economics, Biololgy/Human Biology, Engineering and International Relations. Students consider themselves intellectually curious and “laid-back but ambitious”. Certainly, as the premier private university on the West Coast and one of the most selective in the United States, students feel fortunate to study on a beautiful campus with a diverse and talented student body.
The admissions process for Stanford focuses on the individual applicant, and the various facets of his/her life, including extracurricular activities. That being said, Stanford could “fill the freshman class three times over with perfect grades and SAT scores.” The acceptance rate is about 9%. Due in part to a large endowment, Stanford is a “needs-blind” institution when it comes to financial aid. More than three-quarters of students receive some aid.
Stanford Athletes compete for “the Cardinal” in NCAA Division I. There are 18 Women’s varsity sports, 15 for men, and 1 coed, with 26 club sports. The athletes are as successful as the academics, with many NCAA championships in recent years. Men’s football and women’s basketball have enjoyed recent success. There are approximately 300 athletic scholarships.
In sum, Stanford is a highly desirable destiny for college students, as a result of the sunny climate top-notch academic offerings, and school spirit.