Widgets Magazine

GSC talks EV housing, professional development for service workers

(SEAN CHEN/The Stanford Daily)

In its first meeting of the quarter, the Graduate Student Council (GSC) heard updates on the expanding Escondido Village residences and discussed a resolution related to the professional development of service workers.

The GSC met with officials from Stanford Residential & Dining Enterprises (R&DE) and other stakeholders involved in the Escondido Village construction project that will accommodate 2,000 additional graduate students on campus.

According to R&DE Senior Director for Student Housing Operations Imogen Hinds, the project aims to eliminate the need for subsidized off-campus housing, a program currently serving some 1,200 students.

Hinds emphasized R&DE’s awareness of local housing rates in areas surrounding Stanford and said R&DE is striving to keep its rates comparable to those of existing graduate housing on campus.

R&DE Senior Director of Maintenance Operations and Capital Projects Michael VanFossen said that R&DE incorporated student feedback about desired housing options to include a two-bedroom, two-bathroom option.

The Escondido Village project will add four ten-story buildings and 750 parking spaces by August 2020, according to Project Executive Mark Bonino.

The GSC also discussed a resolution, penned by Undergraduate Senator Lizzie Ford ’20, which would increase on-campus service workers’ access to professional development opportunities. Ford’s proposal exists in tandem with another resolution, which seeks to address understaffing in Stanford’s dining halls.

R&DE spokesperson Jocelyn Breeland said that proper communication between Ford and R&DE had not occurred.

“What [Ford] is suggesting is much less than what we already do,” Breeland said, referring to staff professional development.

Ford, on the other hand, said that R&DE “had not been responsive” to her reaching out.

After further discussion and clarification between Ford and Breeland, the two agreed to engage in closer communication on the issue. Undergraduate and graduate senators will vote on Ford’s  resolution next week.

Law school student Rachel Green also presented to the Council an initiative to propose a new Campus Climate Survey similar to the 2015 Campus Climate Survey. Green seeks a focus group of students who would preferably have taken and have memory of the 2015 survey, which drew criticism upon its results’ initial release due to concerns about survey method and data presentation.

The GSC unanimously voted to approve new appointees to the Nominations Commission and discussed its new Advocacy Committee.


Contact Sean Chen at kxsean ‘at’ stanford.edu.


An earlier version of this article incorrectly implied that R&DE is aiming to keep its rates comparable to rates in the area. Instead, R&DE is trying to keep rates comparable with existing graduate housing on campus. The Daily regrets this error.

About Sean Chen

Despite having received only a high school level of educational attainment, Sean Chen nonetheless strives to write about what is interesting and/or necessary. He hails from Shanghai, China, and therefore possesses plenty of experience with bureaucracy and careful language. Interests include calligraphy and overcommitment.