Lara Tohme is the Associate Director of Introductory Seminars in Stanford Introductory Studies (SIS) in the office of the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education (VPUE). Lara oversees the curriculum development, faculty pedagogic support, and operations of the program. Introductory Seminars are small-group courses taught by esteemed faculty designed specifically for Stanford first-year, sophomore, and new transfer students. These discussion-based academic classes are offered in a wide range of disciplines, in more than sixty departments and programs from all seven schools.
Before joining SIS, Lara served as Associate Dean of Academic Advising in VPUE, where she oversaw the largest group of Undergraduate Advising Directors (UADs) in Academic Advising. The UADs are professional advisors assigned to specific residences and work with every Stanford undergraduate student from matriculation to graduation. They assist students with both routine and complex matters pertaining to academic requirements and policies, course selection and sequencing, investigating majors, research, fellowships, co-curricular opportunities, and post-graduate study. Also within the context and responsibilities of her role as Associate Dean, Lara supported Academic Advising through a period of significant change and uncertainty arising in part from the COVID-19 pandemic; policy and organizational changes across the university; and new patterns of on-site, remote, and hybrid work. In her tenure as Associate Dean she built better collaboration between the various units within Academic Advising and improved and helped streamline advising practice and administrative processes.
Prior to coming to Stanford to join VPUE, Lara was a faculty member in the Art Department at Wellesley College, where she also co-directed the Architecture Program. She has also taught at Dartmouth College and the Boston Architectural College. Lara has lived and worked in the Middle East, North Africa, Europe, and both coasts of the United States. She earned her PhD in Architecture: History, Theory and Criticism from MIT, and has held numerous fellowships, including the Aga Khan Award for Architectural Studies at MIT and the Samuel H. Kress Fellowship at the American Center of Research in Amman, Jordan.
Current Role at Stanford
Associate Director of Introductory Seminars