Twain is an all-frosh house, consisting of two two-story wings. We have two single gender floors and two floors for students of all genders. Close to the heart of campus, it is adjacent to volleyball and basketball courts, and expansive lawns for lounging and relaxing.
Together with the RFs, the Twain staff work hard at creating an inclusive, welcoming, warm, supportive and safe environment for everyone. This effort takes a variety of forms, from dinners at the RFs’ apartment to house concerts, fireside chats hosted by the staff, and trips exploring some of the natural and cultural wonders of our area. Informally, residents regularly roll out to support each other in theater and sports, concerts, and other parts of campus life.
When not out and about, you’ll find Twainiacs in the East Lounge relaxing playing pool or table tennis, video or board games, or watching movies on the big screen. North Lounge it typically quieter, hosting study groups, quiet conversation, and impromptu piano performances.
Hari Manoharan: I’ve been a professor at Stanford in the Physics department since 01-01-01. My family comes from Sri Lanka (formerly Ceylon). While most of my family fled Sri Lanka as minority refugees admitted into countries such as Mexico, Canada, and Australia, my parents earlier witnessed turmoil that presaged war and this later exodus, and came to America to attend graduate school. Following their pursuit for higher education, their one-way journey away from home and family, and joining the workforce, I was born in Milwaukee, and grew up in Oklahoma City. As a kid I fixed cars, helped my parents build and program the very first microcomputers (Altair 8080 and Sphere 1), dodged tornados in my Ford Pinto, played violin, sacked groceries, and liked to run long distances to think. In an endless quest for knowledge, I always knew I wanted to work with my hands and create things that push the boundaries of what is possible. At Stanford I built the lab for Manipulation of the Atom, where my research group explores quantum physics and nanoscience using matter assembled by hand from the building blocks of nature—single molecules, atoms, nuclei, and electrons. I have been a director of undergraduate studies and do pre-major and major advising. I have most recently been teaching quantum mechanics, statistical mechanics, and condensed matter physics to undergraduate and graduate students.
Luisa Bozano: I was born in Genova, Italy and have been living in the USA since 1996 and recently became a U.S. Citizen. A few days after received my Laurea (Master’s) degree from the University of Genova, I got on an airplane to America to work at Brookhaven National Laboratory. After spending a few months there for a Master’s thesis, my passion for diving and my coding and physics experience lured me to St. John, Virgin Islands, where I worked on a closed-circuit underwater rebreather apparatus. From there I flew to California where I joined a small startup developing a tabletop free-electron laser. I was hired at U.C. Santa Cruz as a research assistant and later obtained my Ph.D. in Physics there. I was recruited by IBM Research Division before graduation and have worked at IBM Almaden Research Center in Silicon Valley ever since, currently managing the nanofabrication program and running a research lab. While I was a student, I could not afford to go back to Italy, so I spent long periods of time away from my family. I made those sacrifices because I was committed to completing graduate school and achieving my dream of becoming a scientist. For as long as I remember I have always volunteered, mentored, or tutored other students (I was 14 when I formally tutored my first student). Perhaps because of my personal experience I have been an avid promoter at IBM of student internship activities as well as outreach to women and minorities around the world.
What’s cool about this frosh house?
What’s cool is a house that is at times both welcoming and challenging, as everyone is experiencing being Stanford students for the first time. What’s cool is being supported by a staff that knows how to take a more-or-less random assortment of first year students and turn them into a family, a community, and a home. What’s cool is creating a community with love for diversity, a respect for people wherever they’re at, and the willingness to address the frictions that might arise as a result. Like everywhere else, we put on programs and host guests, and we do all the things that make frosh year special, but with a little Twain magic. Loving and appreciating how great, fun, exciting and complicated frosh year can be -- and sharing that love -- is the coolest.
Our house is meaningful to the Stanford community because…
We are students’ first home at Stanford, and we are the epicenter for many of the relationships and experiences that come to define students’ Stanford experience. We try to foster student growth in a variety of ways: by creating rich arts and wellness programs; by providing spaces for residents (and staff) to think critically and act sensitively about race, gender, class, politics, sexuality, and other realms of identity and difference; by offering a sanctuary from the pressures of classes and clubs; and by modeling what it is like to be brilliant, funny, resilient, authentic, goofy, loving, kind, patient, forgiving, and respectful members of our campus community and the world beyond.