Thoughts on NSO from freshmen and upperclassmen

Oct. 1, 2014, 3:42 a.m.

The Daily talked with Stanford freshmen and upperclassmen about their memorable New Student Orientation (NSO) moments and thoughts on freshman year. Upperclassmen Resident Assistants (RAs) and Academic Theme Associates (ATAs) also offered advice to freshmen. Below are some quotes.


On band run…

Martine Madill ’16: “During band run, I remember thinking, ‘I didn’t sign up for this.’ It was a long distance.”

James Webber ’16: “Band run was crazy, but it made me know I was in the right place.”

Clare Moffatt ’18:  “Before band run, they told us to bring running shoes and coins. I thought the coins part was part of it, but they just said that to trick us.”

Chinedum “Simba” Ecbosimba ’18: “Band run was fun at first, but then I almost ran into a pole. NSO was tiring but well designed and welcomed students. [After NSO] it was weird to be in a classroom.”


On school spirit…

Friend Chaikulngamdee ’16: “We learned the dorm chants during NSO, but never really used them after that. Later in the year, we would jokingly mock them — it became a thing.”

Martine Madill ’16:“Freshmen have a crazy first quarter, and a crazy first year. Five percent get here—do what you love!”

Ryoko Hamaguchi ’15: “We learned dorm chants before band run and used them in MemAud (Memorial Auditorium) but didn’t really use them after. Week One you’re hit with classes.”


On new friends…

Shahab Fadavi ’15: “Be open to meeting people, especially in the first few weeks. . . . Spend just as much time outside of class as inside, you can learn just as much outside as inside.”

Camila Camacho ’18: “NSO and freshman year help establish a family. Soto is a tight community. I expect to spend the year exploring.”

Friend Chaikulngamdee ’16: “There’s a lot of freshman year growth, being away from home and living in an environment together. . . It’s cliché but it’s those midnight conversations.”

Tiffany Kuo ’18: “Before Stanford you have predetermined friends. Within the first few days of NSO, people were forming groups.”


On the years ahead…

Friend Chaikulngamdee ’16: “You don’t have to have it figured out, you’re here to explore.”

Martine Madill ’16: “I expected it to be academically challenging, and to be pushed personally. I thought college was linear, but it’s not.”

Anjali Majumbar ’18: “In my future years at Stanford, I expect the social scene to die down.”

Cale Strong ’16: “Stanford is home now more than my actual home. Take time to enjoy it and make it your home. Take time for yourself.”

Chinedum “Simba” Ecbosimba ’18: “NSO taught us what’s OK and what flies, but we’ll have to learn that intuitively.”


On reflecting…

Ryoko Hamaguchi ’15: “Explore beyond your department. I’m a biology major, so once I finished the prerequisites I could enjoy painting. I made a painting of what my freshmen perspective of Stanford was like (with a bike, Hoover Tower, the Stanford motto “The Wind of Freedom Blows”). This year, I want to get a canvas the same size and paint what Stanford means to me now.”

Clare Moffatt ’18: “I expect harder work than NSO. But Stanford already feels like a home away from home.”

Ryoko Hamaguchi ’15: “I was an introverted freshmen, but I had the support of the staff in Otero. It didn’t die off.”

Clara Luu ’15: “They should have had NSO sessions called ‘Biking in Groups’ and ‘Letting Go of Your Inbox.’”

Camila Camacho ’18: “I met so many people, I can’t remember them all. . . My lanyard name tag broke (towards the end of NSO) so that’s when I stopped wearing it.”

Anjali Majumbar ’18: “I went to an engineering lecture and heard from some speakers. But, NSO was also socially helpful.”

Tiffany Kuo ’18: “NSO was high energy and social, but it’s nice to have a routine now that classes started.”


Katherine Carr is a reporter for The Stanford Daily with a passion for science and public health. She comes to Stanford from Irvine, Calif., where she worked as a freelance writer for the Orange County Register. Carr is a prospective chemistry major and likes to write about science, politics and fashion. To contact her, please email kcarr2 'at' or follow her on Twitter @KatAnneCarr.

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