Class of 2016
Major: political science, African/African-American studies
The summer before he was set to start at Stanford, Brandon Hill was de-accepted by the university for a bad grade in physics. He decided to take a year off — something he later dubbed "Year On" during a TEDx talk — to travel more than 30,000 miles across the world on a full scholarship through Semester at Sea.
He made it to Stanford and is now vice president of the school's more than 16,000 undergraduate and graduate students.
Hill is passionate about helping youths of color maximize their creative potential through his startup, Enza Academy. Over the last two years, Enza has trained more than 150 kids nationwide at its innovation, tech, and entrepreneurship "hack-camps," which have been sponsored by Google, Stanford, Columbia University, and Facebook. Last December, Hill and his cofounder spoke about Enza Academy at the White House, where Hill interned the summer after his freshman year at Stanford.
He's also interned at Google on the YouTube star-management team, at UNICEF in Tanzania, and for the US Department of Education. When he graduates in June, Hill plans to work full-time on his "TED meets Twitter" idea-sharing platform.