Cooperative Life at Stanford University

Co-operative societies bring forth the best capacities, the best influences of the individual for the benefit of the whole, while the good influences of the many aid the individual.
Leland Stanford
October 1, 1891
Stanford University Opening Ceremonies
I think one of the most important things to be taught in the institution is co-operation. ... By co-operation society has the benefit of the best capacities, and where there is an organized co-operative society the strongest and best capacity inures to the benefit of each.
Leland Stanford
June 22, 1893
Last letter before his death,
written to University President Jordan

Synergy is a student-run cooperative community on the campus of Stanford University. Cooperative organizations were central to the founders' vision for Stanford University, and have existed on the campus since it opened its doors in 1891.

Today, Synergy House and its fellow campus cooperatives continue to uphold Stanford's founding vision.

Synergy Cooperative Manifesto

We aim to create an alternative-lifestyle community that provides a safe space for the growth and education of youth in the modern age. This is accomplished through a self-educating living space that gives students opportunities to push their boundaries and discover the questions that they are working on. Cooperation and consensus teach essential nonviolent communication skills. At its heart, we aims to be a community of encounter...a place where you can be guaranteed to show up and have the conversation you didn't even know you were needing. Activism in the face of cultural stagnation. Open support of creativity and cooperation. Principles of improvised action: showing up, saying yes, and creating events to share our collection of knowledge -- music festivals, full moon celebrations, skill shares and midnight manifestos. The idea is to create a space for ritual and purpose in the vacuum of our failing industrial education. Reconnect to roots. Realize collective humanity. Make your homework your life work.

Where is Synergy?

Synergy Cooperative
550 San Juan St.
Stanford, CA 94309
(map)