New ASSU podcast sheds light on current events, campus culture and student advocacy

Oct. 8, 2020, 9:19 p.m.

A new podcast created by the Associated Students of Stanford University aims to shed light on issues that affect the undergraduate and graduate student communities and the people advocating for these communities.

ASSU Director of Communications Cricket X. Bidleman ’21 first proposed the podcast, titled “All Students of Stanford Unite,” when she was interviewed for her position in May 2019. 

“I felt that we needed an auditory medium to connect with people so that they could hear our voices and figure out who we are beyond the work we do,” Bidleman said. “If they cannot see our faces, at least they could hear the expression and passion we have.”

Episodes published in September tackle three main topics: the Honor Code, personal motivation and self-care. Episodes published in October talk about media representations of issues that pertain not only to Stanford but also to the global community.

Due to the ongoing effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, Bidleman believed that this year was an optimal time to launch the podcast.

“We are in our own little bubbles quarantining,” she said. “We are on Zoom all day. Podcasts are a really good way for people to have something to listen to, especially when people start to feel disconnected with the Stanford community and the world, in general.” 

According to Bidleman, one major goal of the podcast is to bridge the communication gap between the student body, student government and Stanford administrators.

“During COVID-19, we do not have many conversations with people,” she said. “We talk and text with them, asking for favors and other tasks, but we don’t sit down and just have a conversation about topics people are passionate about.”

ASSU President Vianna Vo ’21 said that the ASSU podcast can engage members in the Stanford community on issues that matter to them, allowing them to learn more about “why people are pursuing the advocacy they are pursuing.”

“We want to encourage people’s self-agency and engagement with student government because those are skills and habits that translate after they graduate from Stanford,” Vo said.

Undergraduate Senate Chair Micheal Brown ’22 emphasized the need for the Stanford community to listen to different perspectives on campus, especially when it comes to our education.

“We want to increase outreach and share more of our varied perspectives among the different communities at Stanford from students, professors, faculty and administrators,” he said. “Personally, when I was interviewed for the podcast, I wanted professors to recognize the time that we are living in.” 

“It matters that we learn, yes, but not when our democracy is at stake, when Black people are being killed and when we see people losing their lives and livelihoods,” he added.

Although ten episodes have been published to Spotify, Bidleman said that the podcast may evolve as current events shift its focus.

“I am not big into spoilers, but I do plan to ask those interviewed in November to talk about something that they are thankful for because we need to remember those who made us who we are,” she said. “I am super passionate about this project, and I want whoever my successor is, the next director of communications, to continue it.”

This article has been updated to clarify that Cricket Bidleman was interviewed in May 2019 for her current ASSU position.

Contact Jordan John Lee at jjslee22 ‘at’

Jordan John Lee is a staff writer for the Sports section and occasionally writes for the News section of The Daily. Fresh off graduating with majors in Biology and Classics, he is a second-year master's student in Epidemiology and Clinical Research. From the 626, he has grown up watching his Los Angeles teams, the Dodgers and Lakers. His dream is to watch tennis at all four Grand Slam tournaments. Contact him at jjlee 'at'

Login or create an account

Apply to The Daily’s High School Summer Program

deadline EXTENDED TO april 28!