Stanford Challenge Accepted

Posted by at 3:31PM

Unbeknownst to most students, yesterday was a day of celebration. Our school’s officials, faculty, alum, donors and more had an event to honor the end of the incredibly successful Stanford Challenge. By raising $6.2 billion dollars, exceeding the University’s goal of $4.3 billion dollars, the campus has not only maintained its grandeur during tough economic times, but has been rejuvenated in front of our very eyes.

This was one of my favorite statistics.

Even though President Hennessy sent out an email yesterday sharing the story, I don’t know if the average student checking their email understood the magnitude of what was accomplished. We may have a healthy endowment, but this was still the most money raised in a university campaign, ever. Be proud, Stanford.

But it’s not enough to just talk about the Stanford Challenge. I think it helps to see the results. This campaign has shaped the Stanford experience current students are all living, right now. If you were curious about current or past construction sites you’ve seen around campus, I’ve listed  an explanation and snapshot of a few of the projects below. If you want more details, make sure to check out the Challenge’s website.

Arrillaga Gym, Part 2 – On Roble field, workers have broken ground on a new gymnasium for students on West Campus. This structure will compliment the relatively new gym ( the first Arrillaga Gym was finished in 2006) we already know and love. With a gym, pool, and focus on outdoor education, this facility will propel us farther down the road to becoming a sports-centric school.

Olmstead Road – Have you biked to Starbucks? Have you seen those adorable multi-colored houses along the road? Those building are new homes (and a new lure) for Stanford’s athletic staff. The bright pastel colors of many of the houses are a definite break from the traditional orange anterior and red stucco theme we have in most other parts of campus.

New Law School Building – As a freshman living in Stern, this area used to be a deserted construction site with an ominous tower. It seems that tower had a purpose. The William H. Neukom building, with its centerpiece tower overlooking a courtyard, is the latest addition to the law school complex. As you can tell by the giant arrow in the shot below, there’s even a video to look back on the building’s conception. With new apartments and a new building, it seems like law students have all the luck.

Autonomous Cars – Considering the splash automonous cars are making in the news, I thought it was appropriate to highlight the our Automotive Innovation Lab. It’s the home of Shelley (below) and Junior, our latest award winning self-driven cars.

Bing Concert Hall – Last but not least is the Bing Concert Hall, currently in construction. This is one of the many ways the arts are regaining ground (literally) on our campus. This building combined with the upcoming arts district will make Stanford an aesthetic force to be reckoned with.

 If you haven’t already clicked a link to view the entire interactive map and check out all the buildings, here it is again. There is one last mystery to solve. What’s up with the new field and and lounge area between Stern and Wilbur Hall? Either way, its just one more way Stanford just keeps getting better and better.

The freshmen have it good this year.


One Response to “Stanford Challenge Accepted”

  1. Michael Cruz says:

    It’s the return of the other Wilbur Field! I played Ultimate Frisbee there for the first time there. That field was there for years (pre-2006). When they started construction on the Wilbur Parking Structure and Munger, they needed a place for the cars, equipment, and supplies associated with construction. That’s when the University literally paved over paradise and put up a parking lot. Woo. Woo. Woo.


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