Stephanie Peng, MBA ’14: Finding Connections in the Momentous and the Mundane

Looking for community in matters big and small brings fulfillment on and off campus.

June 13, 2014

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Stephanie Peng, MBA ’14 | ToniBird Photography

This series features our students’ reflections on their aspirations, learnings, challenges, and joys. Here, Stephanie shares what she’s discovered about personal and professional fulfillment while contemplating happiness.

What brings me joy is a question that I’ve examined a lot in the last few months.

In preparation for my TALK [in which Stanford GSB students share their stories with their peers], I had to do a lot of introspection into what I value in life. I’ve also been doing the 100-day happiness challenge, where you have to send in a photo every day of what made you happy that day. I’m on day 30.

What I’ve learned is that feeling connected to people and community brings me joy. This can be a big thing, like being part of the Stanford GSB community or a volunteer group for Kiva [which connects borrowers and lenders online to alleviate poverty]. It can be a little thing, like being one of a twinkling row of bike lights when I’m riding across campus at night.

Those connections make me feel grounded and fulfilled. This is something I seek out not only in my personal life, but also in my professional life. I enjoy being part of a community of social innovators with a passion and a vision for what the world should look like.

From my happiness challenge, I’ve also learned something simpler that makes me happy: good food!

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