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In Stanford’s first year, 1891, 39 men and 12 women from 19 states enrolled as graduate students, representing one of the first opportunities for graduate study on the West Coast.
Today, 9,368 students are pursuing 15 distinct post-baccalaureate degrees in nearly 200 graduate programs in all seven of Stanford’s schools: Business; Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences; Education; Engineering; Humanities and Sciences; Law; and Medicine. Stanford offers the JD, MBA, MD, and a variety of Masters degrees. About half of Stanford’s graduate students are pursuing a doctoral degree; Stanford is consistently among the leading private universities awarding the highest number of PhDs annually.
Stanford’s collaborative intellectual community provides an unparalleled environment for graduate study and research. Stanford’s graduate students engage in learning, teaching, and research that cross department and disciplinary boundaries and may study in interdisciplinary or joint degree programs that span School boundaries. Enrollment exchange programs with the University of California, Berkeley, the University of California, San Francisco, and other select universities around the country enable graduate students to take courses not offered at Stanford.
Graduate students are encouraged to engage in a variety of professional and career development opportunities at Stanford as they develop their skills to embark on the many careers paths available to them. Many graduate students serve as research or teaching assistants, making significant contributions to the university’s mission of education and research.
Fellowships and Awards
In 2016/17, Stanford provided $420M for graduate student support, a 7% increase from the previous year. The Office of the Vice Provost for Graduate Education administers seven university-wide graduate fellowship programs. Having gained great visibility over the past two decades, the Stanford Graduate Fellowships in Science and Engineering annually awards three-year fellowships to over 100 exemplary incoming doctoral students in over 40 departments and interdisciplinary programs, granting Fellows autonomy to pursue research interests in specialized fields. Over the past decade, the Stanford Interdisciplinary Graduate Fellowship Program has awarded 200 fellowships to doctoral students whose innovative research crosses traditional disciplinary boundaries. The EDGE (Enhancing Diversity in Graduate Education) Doctoral Fellowship and the DARE (Diversifying Academia, Recruiting Excellence) Doctoral Fellowship Programs provide funding and professional development resources to exemplary doctoral students who will enhance the diversity within their academic fields.
Stanford graduate students have a long history of competing successfully for national and international fellowships as well as research grants. Currently, over 650 graduate students are supported by a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship, a three-year fellowship awarded to the nation’s most promising scholars.
The Knight-Hennessy Scholars program is a new graduate-level scholarship aimed at preparing the next generation of leaders to address increasingly complex global challenges. The Knight-Hennessy Scholars program will annually select up to 100 outstanding graduate students with demonstrated leadership and civic commitment, who will receive up to three years of funding to pursue graduate education at Stanford, beginning in Autumn 2018.
Approximately, 33% of the 2017–18 graduate student population, over 3,000 students, are international students from over 100 countries. The top five countries other than the US that Stanford graduate students call home are: China, India, South Korea, Canada, and France.
About 55 percent of graduate students live on campus. This number will rise to 75% when housing under construction is complete, which is anticipated to be in 2020. Stanford is making a major investment in graduate housing to provide approximately 2,000 new beds for graduate students to live on campus.
Admissions decisions are made by each department and program. Graduate Admissions in the Office of the Registrar provides application materials for nearly all graduate degree programs. Visit online or call (650) 723-4291. See also:
- Graduate School of Business admissions
- School of Law admissions
- School of Medicine’s M.D. program admissions