Extracurricular Activities

Year-Start Events

On 9/18, there was a Haas Center retreat for all student-service leaders. I was there for both QSA and Hackathon. There wasn't a ton of work that got done, but I met some cool people. One person was with I AM, Initiative Against Malaria, which I didn't know existed.

On 9/19, there was a meeting for all sophomore-premeds to make sure everyone is on track. Since most of the people there had been at it for a year longer than me and since I was, more or less, on track, it eased some stress.

Summer 2009 Debate


I am very proud of my debaters at Palo Alto HS.   They seem very excited about the upcoming topic and have been doing a lot of work on their own.  I have high expectations. 

One team even wants to do paperless debate!  That was what originally inspired me to make my own version of the paperless template rather than just helping Whitman with their template.

Teaching a Java Summer Camp

The Job

The last week in July, I was teaching Java at a summer camp.  The camp was run by Matt Fraser, the director of debate at Stanford, who also owns a company called Education Unlimited that puts on summer camps.  A few days before the start of the camp, he gives me a call saying that his regular person flaked on him, and he needs a replacement.  I accepted.

Lessons Learned

Summer 2009 Tech Projects


I’m one of the project directors for next year’s Dance Marathon Hackathon.  Dance Marathon was an organization dedicated to fundraising for FACE AIDS, and the Hackathon was designed to connect technically inclined people, who might not otherwise be interested in public service, with nonprofits.  During the 24 hours when the Dance Marathon dancers are dancing to fundraise, the Hackathon hackers are working on tech projects for nonprofits.

Middle and High School Panels

At the end of May, a group called Project Motivation sent out some emails asking for people to be panelists for middle schoolers who were interested in college.  It was meaningful in a way similar to my tutoring.  I got the chance to talk with kids who were enthusiastic about education even though they didn’t come from the most economically (or educationally) advantaged communities.

Day of Silence

Thursday of that week was Stanford’s Day of Silence (it doesn’t fall on the National Day of Silence because our Admitted Students Weekend is on that day).  It wasn’t very well advertised this year.  I guess that’s one of the things I’ll be in charge of next year with QSA – hope I can do better!

After the Day of Silence, I collected my thoughts and sent an email out.  This Day of Silence got me to think about issues of voice and silencing.  My philosophical revelations and my description of the event:

A few days ago, you may have noticed some people who weren’t talking. 

Student Government Elections

The first week of Spring term was campaign week.  I was running for ASSU (student government) Senate, and there was only a one week period in between when we were allowed to start campaigning and when voting takes place. 

Queer Straight Alliance

In May, last year’s QSA leadership approached me and recommended that I apply to be part of next year’s QSA leadership.  I applied, and now I’m co-chair and financial manager.

In the past few years, it has mostly been a social organization.  Last year, they organized the work on the No On Prop 8 campaign, but not a whole lot of other political action.  There is a lot of potential in the organization, though, and I hope to make it a lot more political.  One thing that we’ll want to do is organize an Ally Week to try to get more people to identify as allies to LGBTQ people. 

Student Government

This past year, I was an executive fellow on the ASSU (Associated Students of Stanford University – Student Government) web team.  Starting this spring, I became a deputy chair of technology.

Because of Gobaud’s CS experience and public service attitude, there are a lot of cool projects underway.  There are some general student-life applications (ie, online room reservations for the student union), but, for instance, we’ll also be creating a service database where anyone can post their experiences with the many public service organizations on or near campus.

Dance Marathon Hackathon

Last year’s student body president, a few years ago, started Dance Marathon.  It’s an annual 24 hour fundraiser for FACE AIDS / Partners in Health that was was started as a response to reading Paul Farmer’s book, Mountains Beyond Mountains. 


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