A Dream Comes True

Diep Nguyen, SSIHP Student

I still remember the slight regret and jealousy when visiting Stanford’s Memorial Church during my San Francisco tour in Oct 2013. Stanford used to be my dream, my “long lost dream.” So, it’s hard to believe that now THE DREAM HAS COME TRUE. Walking down those great halls, smelling the richness of their history, and now becoming aware of myself as a Stanford student; I still can’t believe it. I am part of the Stanford Summer International Honors Program, which is an eight-week program which Stanford Summer offers to its partners around the globe. This year, there are more than 100 students attending from 20 universities in 14 different countries. I feel quite proud and privileged to represent Finland with 5 other friends/supermen from Aalto University. SSIHP is part of the overall Summer Session Program for around 700 students across the US and everywhere the world. We share a large range of summer courses. We also share the residence. In the summer, the Stanford student body is super diverse. Quite international!


AALTO Team at the SSIHP Dessert Reception

I’ve been at Stanford for 3 days and so far the experience is quite overwhelming. It’s about the atmosphere here: red, and vibrant. And in most people I’ve met, there is also another level of pride and confidence. I had thought maybe it was the American culture, but somehow it feels different from USC (University of Southern California, where I did my exchange study last fall). Then the Stanford campus is insanely huge and beautiful. It has never been that simple to get lost for me, and not only me, but many others are complaining about getting lost, too. A fellow student from Spain told me it took her an hour to get from home to class, but only 8 minutes once she knew her way. I realize that I desperately need a bike soon.

Back of the Memorial Church

Back of the Memorial Church

Despite frustrations of being in a new place, the campus in many ways is like a tropical paradise – so green color and blossomed flowers all over the place. Many corners are close to Mexican style mission architecture. I love the buildings near Memorial Court the most. The surrounding air is special; I feel the generations of great scholars who have studied, taught, nurtured and worked. And students today are breathing the very same air. How Wonderful!

I’m so happy I made it to Stanford. I’m in the land of excellence now. I’ll try to get the best out of the 8 weeks here, and feel so excited about the Technology Entrepreneurship class tomorrow!