The best experience as an intern this summer was, coincidentally, visiting Stanford University. A strong portion of my summer was spent in the Bay area, though not spanning past the south side of San Francisco. I knew becoming coming to northern California that I had a few specific destinations that I was determined to visit, including Stanford. Most of these had been check-marked off by the first three weeks of exploration. As I settled into the internship, I became more enveloped in my research so the adventurous side of my visit had taken a bit of a back seat. Finally, two days ago, I had the pleasure of visiting the place I’d been hyping up for the past month and a half.
The journey took a walk to the BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit), 15 stops, a transfer to the Caltrain, 11 more stops, and a half mile walk to campus. No easy feat. We quickly came to learn that Stanford’s campus seemed to be its’ own little hub in and of itself. There was definitely a line between what was considered the city area and what was considered the campus area. We talked around the city a bit, which boasted many Philz Coffee shops and small eclectic restaurants. It definitely seemed that there were many places that students could get to without having to leave the city, which would be really convenient. We next went through a wooded area to get to the heart of campus. We approached the strip of palm trees (aptly named Palm Drive) that leads one directly into the oval, and walked around campus for the remainder of the night.
From here it became clear that the student life at Stanford and student life at Berkeley were very dissimilar. To me, this demonstrated the variety of types of graduate schools I could see myself at. I think that, moving forward and applying to grad schools, it is vital to experience the atmosphere and feel of a place before you could see yourself working there for at least the next five years. This experience was my favorite across the internship because it nicely wrapped up the ending of the program and showed me a different side of the Bay Area that I hadn’t seen before.