Incoming & New Students

Welcome to Stanford and the Biosciences community!

These pages provide information about upcoming orientation events and resources for navigating the transition to graduate school. You are encouraged to consult the events calendar for workshops, seminars, thesis defenses, and social gatherings, and refer to the Graduate Student Gateway for answers to all of your questions related to housing, financial aid, and other aspects of graduate student life.

We are here to support you throughout your time at Stanford—if you have any questions throughout at any time here, please contact us.


SBSA First-Year Camping Trip

Don’t miss out on this first year PhD student tradition, organized by the Stanford Biosciences Student Association (SBSA)! Bond with fellow classmates as you explore the beautiful California wilderness at Anthony Chabot Regional Park. Carpools will be organized and all supplies will be provided.

Learn more about SBSA.

Friday, September 21 – Sunday, September 23; signup information will be sent via your Stanford email this summer.

Foundations in Experimental Biology (BIOS 200)

BIOS 200 is required for many first year Biosciences students – check with your department or home program if you’re unsure whether or not you should enroll. Students are coached by faculty and by peer feedback to develop an original, two-page research proposal and an oral presentation. Skills emphasized include: 1) reading for breadth and depth; 2) developing compelling, creative arguments; 3) communicating with the spoken and written word; 4) working in groups or teams.

Begins Monday, September 24, 2018, 10:30am-12:20pm

Lunch follows 12:30-1:30pm – all first-year Biosciences PhD students are invited to join for lunch even if not enrolled in BIOS 200.

Biosciences PhD Lab Coat Ceremony & Dean’s Reception

Celebrate your transition to graduate studies with your new peers and department chairs. Family and friends are welcome to attend and cheer you on as you receive your personalized lab coat (watch for an email this summer requesting your coat size!). This event is co-sponsored by the Senior Associate Dean for Graduate Education and Postdoctoral Affairs, the Stanford Medicine Alumni Association, and the Office of the Dean. View photos from the 2017 Lab Coat Ceremony here.

Monday, September 24, 2018; check-in at 4:00pm at LKSC Berg Hall.

Ceremony begins at 4:30pm. Reception to follow from 6:00-7:00pm on the Dean’s Lawn will feature drinks and light appetizers (dinner is not served at this event).


The annual Graduate Orientation And Lunch Information Event (GOALIE) is sponsored by the Graduate Life Office. All graduate students are invited to attend this event to receive information on resources available to graduate students. Participants include student affairs offices, central university offices, and graduate student groups.

Date and time TBA; GOALIE is held at Canfield Court near the Law School

New Biosciences Student Orientation & Welcome Dinner

Hear perspectives on success in graduate school, then enjoy dinner and mingling with fellow students, faculty, and administrators.

Thursday, October 4, 2018
Orientation program* 4:00-5:30pm @ Classroom TBD
Reception-style dinner to follow 5:30-7:00pm in LKSC Berg Hall

*Note: The orientation program is intended for incoming PhD trainees in the 14 Home Programs, Epidemiology, and Health Research & Policy, and will feature a success in graduate school panel discussion on choosing your rotations and thesis lab. Students in the Bioengineering program are invited to join us for the welcome dinner reception.

SBSA Poster Session and Happy Hour

This poster session is a great way to explore the wide range of graduate student research projects across the Stanford Biosciences. Stop by for drinks, hors d’oeuvres, and discussions with your fellow Bioscience graduate students. This event is hosted by SBSA.

Date & time TBA