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Explore Energy (Theme)

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A vibrant residential community that expands experiential education about energy through high-caliber field trips, interdisciplinary and multi-cultural dialogue, and exploration of Stanford’s landscapes of opportunity. A home for people motivated to make a difference! Explore Energy House is in Junipero in the 2023-24 academic year, and starting in the 2024-25 academic year, it will be located in Potter in Sterling Quad.

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Living at Explore Energy House

Do you want to better understand the connections between the fields of energy technology and policy, national security, economic development, community resilience, and climate change? Are you eager to make friends among housemates who are charged up for the energy revolutions shaping the future?

The mission of Explore Energy House is to provide an integrated experiential learning and living environment that fosters a culture of informed inquiry and curiosity, personal and social responsibility, and fluent engagement with both the imperatives and opportunities for faster energy transitions. More than 20 countries on five continents are represented among the residents, creating a highly multi-cultural community of residents with shared interests in climate justice, taking solutions to scale, and exchanging knowledge from around the world.

What's happening at the Explore Energy House?

Through the interactive Explore Energy Seminar each week, the House connects residents with field leaders and on-ramps to opportunities across campus and beyond.  More than 80% of the seminars are co-hosted with other theme houses or university centers, and half of the co-host partners are student-led organizations.  Explore Energy Seminars are led by faculty, alumni, and students, delving into a wide range of topics from law and policy to technology and investment.  (Have an idea to propose? Be in touch!)  

Enrollment in the Explore Energy Seminar is open to anyone registered at any level of degree progress in any school (law, business, engineering, sustainability, humanities). Every seminar session is also open to drop-in or walk-up participants who are enrolled at Stanford.  The quality of experience in this high-caliber series regularly draws non-residents to participate, expanding the diverse networks that residents enjoy across campus.  Pro-tip:  Because some weeks feature “destination seminars” outside of the House, check the syllabus for special locations or email to request to be an Observer on Canvas in order to receive announcements.

In addition to the weekly seminar series, Explore Energy House curates field trips to energy-related destinations that are often very difficult to access otherwise.  The residents attest that these are peak experiences, as reflected in read-outs on touring an electric vehicle factory and visiting grid control centers in California.  House Leaders also lead field trips to Yosemite National Park, Monterrey, San Francisco, and a side-trip to Tahoe en route to the Gigafactory.

Explore Energy House is supported by the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education and the Explore Energy program based in the Precourt Institute for Energy at the Stanford Doerr School of Sustainability. The best way to stay current is to subscribe to the bi-weekly Explore Energy Newsletter.

Applying to Live at Explore Energy House

Explore Energy House is open to any undergraduate residents in any year of degree progress and any major. House Leaders are dedicated to building a joyful and diverse community where residents feel a sense of authenticity, belonging, and inspiration, where we center the values of  curiosity, exploration, equity and inclusion. The most compelling applicants to the theme house have a strong commitment to contributing to the qualities of this vibrant community and actively exploring any aspect of energy transitions, such as international relations, technology innovation, data science, finance, history, social science, and advancing equity for faster and more just transitions.

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Theme Requirements

Expectations of a Resident in Explore Energy House

  1. Explore energy! It is not expected that applicants arrive with domain knowledge, but rather that they have a desire to engage each other as we explore a wide range of energy ecosystems together. Examples of ecosystems are featured in the Explore Energy Seminar, which is produced in partnership with dozens of co-hosts throughout the year.
  2. Create a vibrant, supportive, engaged and inclusive community at Explore Energy House by building new friendships, participating in House activities, and actively providing feedback to House Leaders and the Resident Fellow.
  3. Assisting fellow residents in learning about and accessing campus resources, and building cross-campus relationships. Older residents can also look forward to becoming mentors to and friends with residents who are first year students.

Pledged Commitments by Applicants in Upper Classes

  1. Participate in a half day Community Kickoff at the beginning of Fall Quarter (tentatively Sunday, 9/29) and at least one energy related field trip during the year.
  2. Work with one or more other residents, the Resident Fellow and the Explore Energy House Leaders to plan, execute, and evaluate at least one theme-related workshop/event/trip during the academic year.
  3. Participate in any 8 or more sessions of the weekly Explore Energy Seminar throughout the year or enroll in at least one quarter.
  4. Reliably participate in periodic house meetings that foster community and dispatch with decisions that affect the experiences offered to all residents.

Why seek assignment to Explore Energy House?

  • Assured of housing in a community of active residents who are avidly pursuing interests that intersect with clean energy revolutions in many contexts around the world.
  • In-house programming featuring springboard opportunities in on-campus activities, stellar summer jobs, and professional development support.
  • Exceptional access to experiential learning via fun field trips.
  • Residents who seek assignment in April at the first opportunity (“pre-assignment”) will have priority access to highly sought field trips to places such as the Tesla Fremont Auto-factory, the Tesla Gigafactory, Redwood Materials, SLAC national lab, etc.
  • Priority for registration to limited opportunities to attend invitation-only events hosted by Precourt Institute for Energy.
  • Excellent location on campus for interests in recreation (pool, rock climbing wall, outdoor gear, courts), arts & dance, mind-clearing open space around the Lake Lagunita basin, and proximity to the School of Sustainability and the Science & Engineering Quad.
  • If you are a rising sophomore, junior, or senior, you are also assured to live in a two-room double.

For inquiries seeking more information or to propose an engaging activity, email


Want to learn more about what our house is like?

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Leadership Team 

  • Yi Cui, Director, Precourt Institute for Energy; Professor, Materials Science and Engineering; Senior Fellow, Precourt Institute for Energy
  • Bruce Cain, Director, Bill Lane Center for the American West; Professor, Political Science
  • Mark Jacobson, Director, Atmosphere/Energy Program; Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Sally Benson, Precourt Family Professor, Professor of Energy Resources Engineering and Senior Fellow at the Precourt Institute for Energy
  • Jane Woodward, Adjunct Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering; Founder and Managing Partner, MAP
  • Diana Gragg, Managing Director, Explore Energy program at the Precourt Institute for Energy; Core Lecturer, Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Bianca Patel, Assistant Director, Explore Energy program at the Precourt Institute for Energy
  • Wahila Wilkie, Program Manager, Explore Energy program at the Precourt Institute for Energy
  • Holmes Hummel, Lecturer, Civil and Environmental Engineering; Founder of Clean Energy Works
  • Anthony Kinslow, Lecturer, Civil and Environmental Engineering; Founder and CEO of Gemini Energy Solutions
  • Kirsten Stasio, Adjunct Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering; VP at MAP
  • Sarah Weaver, Program Manager, Experiential Learning at the Precourt Institute for Energy
  • Katie Taflan Cerneka, Program Manager, Sustainable Finance Initiative (SFI) and Shultz Energy Fellowships
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Potter is located in...


550 Lasuen, Adams, EAST, Murray, Potter, Robinson, Schiff, Sigma Phi Epsilon, Suites, Synergy, Yost, and apartments in Mirrielees and Duan.

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For more information about Governor’s Corner residences visit the Residential & Dining Enterprises website.