Off to Stanford we go!

by Reedz on September 13, 2007

[Addendum 6th March 2008:]

I’m not sure how many Bruneians actually know about Stanford University, but its a crying shame to me if we know all about Oxford and Harvard, but then havent the faintest about Stanford. Here’s the low down:

Stanford is one of the most selective universities in the U.S. In 2006, Stanford’s undergraduate admission rate was 10.8 percent, from a pool of 22,223 applicants—the lowest rate of undergraduate admission in the history of the university. The acceptance rates at the university’s law school (7.7 percent), medical school (3.3 percent), and business school (10 percent) are also among the lowest in the country. For the Class of 2011, Stanford admitted 10.29 percent of an undergraduate applicant pool of 23,956 students; the lowest percentage in University history. The entering transfer class of 2009 was 20 students, with a selectivity rate of 1.4 percent.

Stanford’s current community of scholars includes: 18 (YES EIGHTEEN) Nobel Prize laureates; 135 members of the National Academy of Sciences; 82 members of National Academy of Engineering. Stanford built its international reputation as the pioneering Silicon Valley institution through top programs in business, engineering and the sciences, spawning such companies as Hewlett-Packard, Cisco Systems, VMware, Yahoo!, Google, and Sun Microsystems—indeed, “Sun” originally stood for “Stanford University Network.” In addition, the Stanford Research Institute operated one of the four original nodes that comprised ARPANET, predecessor to the Internet.

10.8 percent, from a pool of 22,223 applicants?? International acceptance into undergraduate at Stanford is much less than 10%. Only a hundred or so international students make up the almost 1700 undergraduate intakes per year. CHARLENE, YOU ROCK!!! I just know that you’re gonna be contributing tremendously to building our beloved nation when you return!

[end of addendum]


Yesterday while sending my old buddy Louis off at the airport, I met Charlene Bong and her family who were off to California where Charlene is due to begin her studies in Physics at Stanford University. Her dad (who’s a fellow St.Margaret’s Alumni) and I are friends and I could see the joy in his eyes when I spoke to him. I couldn’t help feeling so proud of her for being the first Bruneian scholar to be awarded a scholarship to study in the US by Brunei Shell.

Her long list of accomplishments include representing Brunei in the Asian-Pacific Children Convention in Fukuoka, Japan in 2000, SEAMEO Maths Olympiad in Penang in 2005, and the International Physics Olympiad in Singapore in 2006.

Charlene was first featured in the Borneo Bulletin in 1989 for being the first baby to be conceived in Brunei through the IVF treatment. Charlene is one of the earliest IVF (test-tube) babies born in Borneo and her birth in December 1988 at Panaga Hospital was particularly significant at that time.

JS January 18, 2008 at 11:32 am


My name is Jefri.I’m a Brunei living and working in Cali with my family.I sure would like to get to know the Bong Family and their daughter who’s studying in Stanford USA. I guess i’m the only Bruneian family is Cali. I’m also ex St Margaret student.

Hopefully you can lead them to me.My email is

ivfdad May 21, 2008 at 11:10 pm

JS, it’s been very nice getting to know you and your family. I forgot to thank you for getting in touch. Thank-you and do keep in touch.

Finally Rano and the gang have visited Silicon Valley. From all account on his site, it looks like they are most impressed with that part of the world and as a techie who would not be?

And to AnakBrunei, thank-you for writing this article!

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