The Senior Reflection: Final Essays

At the end of each year, TSR students write an essay in which they reflect on their projects, trajectories through Stanford, and plans for the future. Here are the reflections of students who agreed to allow their essays to be made public:


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Donovan Barfield
Complexity from Simplicity
Symmetry is ubiquitous in nature. From the spiral arrays found in flowering plants to the very molecules composing the air we breathe, this phenomenon pervades almost everything - often with deep… Read more
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Suzie Bartram
Leap of Faith
The concept of leaping played a central role in my project, in which there existed a delicate juxtaposition of the power that a frog can produce during its jump against its fragility in surviving changing… Read more
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Jessica Eastling
A Tribute to the History of Stanford’s Landscape
When I sat down to write this final reflection, I didn’t know where to start. Thinking through all of the up and downs, 360’s and forgotten ‘drawing board’ projects, it seemed appropriate to go in chronological… See more
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Alexandria Hicks-Nelson
The Mouse: Reformed
It was June 1st, and I had finally snapped. The night before had been the biggest relief of my senior year, but it took until 11:15am the next day for it to finally sink in. I never had to smell like burnt duron… See more
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Victoria Fischman
Breaking the Cycle
I sat in bewilderment in my lecture—stupefied might even be the right word. Here I was learning about global infectious diseases in an academic setting and the veils of non-profit organizations were slowly… Read more
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Kari Giberson
Breaking the Cycle
Blank page. Really big blank page. To be filled with thoughts, ideas, memories, inspirations, sketches, feelings, pictures, poems, melodies, mistakes, mayhem, magic, distractions, failuresRead more
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Vivian Ho
Café Neuro
The musical portion of my Senior Reflection piece is the least creative part of my project. I wrote the menu, produced the films, and mixed the drinks for Café Neuro, but the audio tracks were simply… Read more
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Bradford Nguyen
Death by Tweezers
My sophomore year, I spent a quarter in Monterey Bay. I spent a lot of time studying population genetics in corral. The corrals to me were very rock like and lifeless. And I received them packaged and … Read more
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Shristi Pandey
Whole and Part: An Exploration of Elephant Communication
The Senior Reflection Project was a set of markedly different experiences for me. I feel that this reflection is a perfect way to revisit some of those representative highlights of the overall journey. This writing… Read more
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Lena Sweeney
My Tree and Me
In looking through my original proposal, I realize how little my project has changed, especially compared to most of my classmates. I stuck with the first idea I chose, for better or worse. I created a… Read more
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Thuy-An Tran
My sister’s hands are much more beautiful than mine. I imagine that in the womb, she grasped all the nutrients for hands and left none behind for her future siblings. Her hands are soft and smooth as… Read more
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Mingqian (Shelly) Xie
Art brought me into the world of medicine and science when I began volunteering seven years ago at a hospital back in Texas. What began as a day of portrait drawing became a new volunteer service… Read more