Stanford University

#10 / #6
Global Influence / U.S. Influence
Most Desirable School

Private research university located in Stanford, California, United States

Stanford University Featured Rankings

About Stanford University

By James Barham, PhD

Stanford University was founded by Leland Stanford, a wealthy railroad magnate and erstwhile US Senator from California, as well as a former Governor of the Golden State. He placed the university in an unincorporated area about 30 miles south of San Francisco, adjacent to the town of Palo Alto (which he also founded). The campus lies in what is now known as Silicon Valley, which contributes greatly to the immense intellectual and economic influence of the private, research university that still bears the Stanford family name. Today, Stanford University is perhaps the closest thing to a true Ivy League school on the West Coast.

The university can claim more than 80 Nobel laureates among its alumni and its full-time or visiting faculty, including:

  • Carl Wieman in physics
  • Roger Kornberg in chemistry
  • Thomas Südhof in physiology or medicine
  • Paul Krugman and Joseph Stiglitz in economics

Stanford is also the world-leader in Turing Awards (for computer science) with 27 winners, including such luminaries as:

  • Vinton Cerf
  • Whitfield Diffie
  • Edward Feigenbaum
  • Martin Hellman
  • John Hopcroft
  • Donald Knuth
  • Barbara Liskov
  • John McCarthy
  • Allen Newell
  • Ronald Rivest

Another area of particular academic strength for Stanford is mathematics, as evidenced by the school’s eight Fields Medalists, including Maryam Mirzakhani and Akshay Venkatesh.

However, the particular area of strength that really sets Stanford apart from most other schools boasting similar academic firepower is its contribution to the world of business, especially successful start-up companies. Stanford is the alma mater of 30 living billionaires, including:

  • Sergey Brin
  • Elizabeth Holmes
  • Elon Musk
  • Larry Page
  • Peter Thiel

Its alumni have founded companies which combined have created 5.4 million jobs and generate $2.7 trillion in annual revenue (as of 2011). If these Stanford-connected companies were to join together and declare their independence, the country they would form would have the 10th-largest economy in the world!

Stanford is also the alma mater of many famous people from numerous other walks of life, including:

  • 31st President of the US, Herbert Hoover
  • Nobel Prize – winning novelist, John Steinbeck
  • Philosophers, Michael Dummett, Donald Davidson, & John R. Perry
  • Former Supreme Court Justice, Sandra Day O’Connor
  • 2020 Democratic Party presidential nomination candidates, Cory Booker & Julián Castro
  • Former astronauts, Mae Jemison, Ellen Ochoa, & Sally Ride
  • TV personality, Rachel Maddow
  • Movie stars, Jennifer Connelly, Sigourney Weaver, & Reese Witherspoon

Finally, with a library whose enormous collection contains more than nine million volumes, Stanford is a major research resource for the entire West Coast region across a wide variety of academic fields.

According to Wikipedia, Stanford University, officially Leland Stanford Junior University, is a private research university in Stanford, California. The campus occupies , among the largest in the United States, and enrolls over 17,000 students. Stanford is ranked among the best universities in the world.

Stanford University Admissions, Retention, and Graduation Information

Annual Applications Acceptance Graduation Rate Median SAT Score Median ACT Score
45,227 5% 95% 1505 33

How Much Does Stanford University Cost To Attend?

Tuition (in-state)
Price by Family Income
Income Average Net Cost
0 - 30K $-1,387
30K - 48K $1,145
48K - 75K $1,959
75K - 110K $10,631
110K+ $45,693

Source: National Center for Education Statistics

How Much Do Stanford University Graduates Make?

If you graduate from Stanford University, then you can expect to earn an average of $141,300 per year. You also have a 91% chance of being employed after 10 years.

Stanford University's Demographics

Demographic data is for full-time, on-campus students.

Student Body Under-Grads Graduates
14,915 7,710 7,205

Where is Stanford University?

Stanford University is located at , Stanford CA 94305

What Is Stanford University Known For?

Stanford University is known for it's academic work in the following disciplines:

Stanford University's Top Areas of Influence With Degrees Offered

Who Are Stanford University's Most Influential Alumni?

Stanford University's most influential alumni faculty include professors and professionals in the fields of Computer Science, Business, and Engineering. Here are some of Stanford University's most famous alumni:

Allen Newell
Allen Newell
An American cognitive scientist.
Elon Musk
Elon Musk
A South African–born American entrepreneur.
Douglas Hofstadter
Douglas Hofstadter
An American physicist, computer scientist and professor of cognitive science.
Edward Thorndike
Edward Thorndike
An American psychologist.
Gérard Debreu
Gérard Debreu
A French economist and mathematician .
Rodney Brooks
Rodney Brooks
An Australian Roboticist.
Vint Cerf
Vint Cerf
An American computer scientist.
Stanley Smith Stevens
An American psychologist & scholar .
Garrett Hardin
Garrett Hardin
An American ecologist .
Peter Thiel
Peter Thiel
An American billionaire entrepreneur.
Leda Cosmides
An American psychologist.
Sergey Brin
Sergey Brin
An American computer scientist and Internet entrepreneur.