Student Life

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Frequently Asked Questions


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Academic Resources

Who are my academic advisors?
As a Brandeis student, you have different types of advisors who are assigned to you. Please see the academic advising website for further information.
How can I find out about academic fellowships?
There is an advisor in Academic Services who is devoted to fellowships. Please see the Academic Fellowships FAQ for further information.
I'm the first in my family to attend college. Are there resources to help me succeed at Brandeis?
The Student Support Services Program (SSSP) offers resources to undergraduates who are the first in their families to go to college and/or have overcome significant barriers to attend Brandeis.
Where can I go if I need help with writing a paper?
The Writing Center is a resource for writing on campus. Please make an appointment if you know when you are going to need help. You must bring a draft of your paper to your appointment.
How do I find study groups?
Trained facilitators run small group study sessions through the Brandeis Undergraduate Group Study (BUGS) program. Please see the BUGS website for more information about this free service.
How do I find out the classes being offered next semester?
Please see the University Registrar website for more information.
What is a Brandeis Monday?
A Brandeis Monday (or Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday/Friday) is a day of the week when we follow that day's class schedule even though it is not actually the same calendar day. They are used to balance out the class schedule in accordance with the days off for holiday observance. For example, a Brandeis Monday can be scheduled on a Thursday; so we follow Monday's schedule despite the fact that it's actually Thursday.
I want to take a class for my own enjoyment, and I don't need it for a requirement. How does the Pass/Fail option work?

To learn more about how pass/fail works, follow these instructions to the proper University bulletin section:

  1. Navigate to the Pass/Fail webpage.
  2. In the left navigation panel, click on 'University Bulletin', which will lead you to the Bulletin Homepage.
  3. Once there, in the left navigation panel, click on 'Current Bulletin (2014-2015)', which will lead you to the Table of Contents.
  4. To the right of the Table of Contents, you should see a 'Shortcuts' panel. Click on 'Bulletin Index'.
  5. Scroll down to 'Pass/Fail Option' — which lies in between 'Parking' and 'Payment Plans, Undergraduate'.
  6. Click on 'Pass/Fail Option', which will lead you to the most updated information about the Pass/Fail Option at Brandeis.
How can I find out more information about going to medical school?
The university's pre-health advisor is available to answer your questions about medical school, including questions about the application process. Please see the website on pre-health advising for more information. 
What is Experiential Learning at Brandeis and why should I take an EL course?
Experiential learning is a process through which students develop knowledge, skills and values from hands-on experiences. Experiential learning at Brandeis includes community-engaged learning, internships and other activities including performances, lab work, and creative and studio work. Please visit the Experiential Learning website for more information.
What is the difference between Experiential Learning and Community Engaged Learning?
Community Engaged Learning is a type of experiential learning that takes place out in the community; often, this involves collaboration between students and community partners. For more information, please visit our Experiential Learning website.
When do I need to declare my major?
You need to declare one major by the end of your fourth semester at Brandeis. For further information, please see the majors and minors website.
How can I satisfy the physical education requirement?
There are several ways to satisfy the physical education requirement. Please see the PE FAQ for further information.

Career Planning

How can I find out about a career field that interests me?

The Hiatt Career Center has many resources to help you with your career-related goals, including individual counseling appointments, workshops, and tools designed to assist you with career research, selecting a major and alumni networking.

What does Hiatt do?

Hiatt helps students and alumni achieve their career goals; they work together, reflecting on personal strengths, exploring career paths, and connecting with alumni, employers, and graduate schools.  Services include resume and cover letter review, interview tips and skills, job and internship searches, internship funding, and graduate and law school application and preparation. Additionally, Hiatt conducts mock interviews, facilitates alumni networking, hosts a variety of workshops — including career forums and fairs throughout the academic year — and maintains regular drop-in hours during the week.

How can Hiatt help me if I have no idea what I want to do after Brandeis?

The first step in finding a career path is understanding who you are as an emerging professional and identifying your values, skills, interests and motivations. Hiatt offers guidance and activities to help you get to know yourself better. Please see the Hiatt website for more information.

When should a student use Hiatt Career Services?

It’s never too early or too late! Hiatt works with students as early as first-year and is full service to alumni.

When should I start thinking about an internship?

There are many ways to gain professional experience, including internships, jobs and volunteering. These experiences are often available throughout the school year. If you are considering seeking a summer opportunity, it is good to get organized early. Bear in mind that some employers will not post internships on their websites until late spring. However, you can review past internships held by Brandeis students in the Brandeis Internship Exchange, BIX. There is a broad range of internship search resources available online to get you started.

Where can I find internship and job postings?

Where can I find internship and job postings? A great place to start is B.hired (powered by Handshake). Log in with your UNet ID and password to access job and internship postings, RSVP to career events, browse password-protected career resources and more. You can also review past internships held by Brandeis students in the Brandeis Internship Exchange, BIX.

How can I network with alumni?

There are many opportunities to network with alumni, both in-person and online. Hundreds of alumni come to campus each semester to speak with students during office hours, information session, panels, forums and more. Check the B.hired calendar for a full schedule of Hiatt events. The Hiatt Career Center moderates a professional networking group on LinkedIn for Brandeis students and alumni; visit our LinkedIn page for details.

How can I connect with employers?

There are many opportunities to connect with Hiatt's employer partners throughout the year, including participating in Hiatt's campus recruiting program; browsing jobs/internships in B.hired; and attending employer events. Hiatt hosts employer events on and off-campus, such as career fairs, employer site visits, classroom presentations and information sessions. Check the B.hired calendar for a full schedule of Hiatt events.

How can I meet with someone from Hiatt?

Hiatt offers an array of ways to get advice. Please see the Hiatt website for current in-person and online drop-in hours (HiattChat). You may also visit or call Hiatt at 781-736-3618 to schedule an appointment. Moreover, many of Hiatt’s resources are available 24/7 and are housed on our website.


Community / Housing

What is a Community Advisor?
A Community Advisor (CA) is a student leader who lives on your hall and is there as a resource for your needs. They can help you resolve any issues and point you to any other resources that are relevant.
What is my Community Advisor (CA) there to help me with?
You ask your Community Advisor any questions you may have. They can help you resolve roommate conflicts or anything else that arises.
What is an Area Coordinator?
An Area Coordinator (AC) is your quad director. They oversee the Community Advisors. Please see the Community Living website for a list of ACs.
What would my Area Coordinator want to talk to me about?
Your AC is a resource for health and wellness and may want to talk to you about any situations that arise. They are there to support you and help keep the residence halls a welcoming safe community.
Am I guaranteed housing as a junior or senior?
Juniors and seniors are not guaranteed on-campus housing, except those who plan to study abroad in the spring of the upcoming academic year. However, there is a wait list for students who are unable to acquire housing during the room selection period. In previous years, every student on the wait list has been offered on-campus housing.
What happens if I get a high lottery number in the housing lottery?
Every year room selection runs a bit differently — some spaces are more popular than others depending on who’s picking them. If you get a high lottery number, you should take a look at the housing statistics page to get an understanding of what your options are; you should also prepare multiple plans because, as stated earlier, the lottery is somewhat unpredictable from year to year.
Can sophomores and juniors live together?
No, sophomores and juniors cannot live together.
Can juniors and seniors live together?
Juniors and seniors can live together in Ziv Suites, Ridgewood Apartments, and Charles River Apartments. Only seniors can live in the Foster Mods. A room breakdown can be found on the community living website.
What is a Common Cause Community?
Do I go through the room selection process if I am in a Common Cause Community?
DCL holds a separate round of room selection for C3. Although it is run similarly, it takes place before regular room selection. For more information, check out the Common Cause Communities homepage and the C3 FAQ.
How do I know what the rules are at Brandeis?

Please download the current Rights and Responsibilities Handbook from the Student Rights and Community Standards website (the link to download the most current version is on the right-hand side of the webpage, in the 'Download the Handbook' section). The handbook contains rules and standards for the Brandeis community. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask any Brandeis staff member or your Community Advisor.

How can the Student Conduct Board help me?
Please look at the Student Rights and Community Standards website for a full overview of the conduct process.
What is a provost and what would I talk to him/her about?
The provost oversees all things academic and related to academics at the university. Please see the provost's website for more information.

Dining

What is the difference between meals and points on the meal plan?
Meals are used as payment for entrance into either Sherman Dining Hall or Lower Usdan for an "all you care to eat meal". Points are used like cash as payments for items purchased in all other dining areas on campus (and can also be used in Sherman/Lower Usdan).
What is WhoCash?
WhoCash can be used throughout the entire campus for the following: In all laundry rooms, in the University Bookstore, paying fines or late fees at the library, copying and printing at the library, repairing your computer at the LTS repair shop and also in all dining locations on campus. WhoCash can also be used off campus at Prime Deli and South St. Market, and in all Coke Vending Machines on campus.
What are the different meal plan options offered?
All students who entered in the Fall of 2013 or later are required to have a meal plan if they live on-campus. A list of the options can be found on the campus card website.
How do I change my meal plan?
You can change your meal plan by signing in to the MyHousing website, send an email to campuscard@brandeis.edu or visit the Campus Card Office in Kutz Hall. Students have until Sept. 4, 2015 to change their fall meal plan.
Can students eat in the Faculty Club?
Students can eat in the Faculty Club and pay with Cash, Credit Card, WhoCash or points. Meals are not accepted at the club.
Where can I find a list of on-campus dining facilities?
A list of our dining facilties can be found at our dining services website. The link will bring you to a default dining hall, Sherman, but there is a drop-down menu at the top of the page, under 'Dining Choices' and there is also a list to the right of the main text, under 'In This Section'.
What is the café in the International Business School? Can I use my meal plan there?
The café in IBS is a small branch of Domenic's deli. Your meal plan is not accepted there. Domenic's does accept WhoCash.
Where can I find kosher food on campus?
Kosher food is available in several different dining halls. Sherman has a Kosher section, but there is other Kosher food available on campus. Please see the Dining Services website for more information.
Who oversees Dining Services?
Dining Services is overseen by Jim Gray, the vice president for campus operations.

Diversity and Spirituality

How do I get involved in the Intercultural Center?
Visit the events section of the ICC website.
What are the clubs that are supported by the Intercultural Center (ICC)?
Please see the ICC website for a list of clubs.
How can I get involved in Hillel?
There are many different student run clubs and a whole Hillel executive board. Please explore the website for more information.
What are the student clubs that are under Hillel?
Please see the Hillel Brandeis website for a comprehensive list of clubs under Hillel.
What Shabbat services are available on campus?
Please see the Hillel Weekly announcements to find out about what is happening this week.
How do I sign up for Shabbat dinner?
Both Chabad and Hillel host weekly Shabbat dinners for students. You can sign up for Chabad Shabbat dinner on their website, and you can sign up for Hillel Shabbat dinner either online or at Sherman Dining Hall when you swipe in for a meal.
What services are available on the High Holidays?
Please see the High Holiday services website for more information.
Do I have to pay to go to High Holy Day services?
Hillel sponsors Reform, Conservative, and Orthodox services during the High Holidays that are free to Brandeis students and children under 18. The services are open to the community, but adults not affiliated with Brandeis must fill out a ticket request form. For more information about High Holidays at Brandeis, please refer to our Hillel website.
Can anyone go to High Holiday services?
Yes. Please see the High Holiday services website for more information.
Can anyone go to Shabbat services?
Yes.
What religions do the chaplains represent?
How can I make an appointment to meet with a chaplain?
To get in touch with our current chaplains, you can email them or stop by their office to see if they are there.
How are the chaplains involved in student groups and which ones?
Please see the list of student groups on the chaplaincy website for more information.

Events and Activities

How do I find out what's happening on campus?
See the campus events calendar website. You can also connect with other students by joining the MyDeis Facebook group for your class.
What tickets does Student Activities sell at a discount?
Student Activities sells tickets to the science museum, movie theaters and more.
How can Conference and Events help me plan an event?
Please see the Conference and Events website for more information.
How can I reserve a room in the Shapiro Campus Center?
Please fill out the space request form which can be found on the Student Activities website.
How do I reserve a commons space in the residence halls?
Please follow the steps on the Community Living website.
If I am planning an event on campus, how can I get food from Dining Services?
Catering can be coordinated through Conference and Events.
How can I register a party?
Complete the event registration form and hand it in to your Area Coordinator (AC). They will want to meet with you to talk about the party before it is approved and happens.
Is there a way for me to get office space for my club?
At the end of each year, there is a lottery to get your club office space. That information is sent to all of the club leaders through our emailing list service (listserv). For more information about starting a club at Brandeis, please visit our Student Activities Club Resources page.
What is Fall Fest?
Fall Fest is a Brandeis tradition. It is Brandeis' parent's weekend and there are lots of fall themed programs.
What is Student Events?
Student Events is the for students, by students programming board at Brandeis. Please see the Student Events website for more information.
What is a JumpStart meeting?
A JumpStart meeting is for planning an event. It gets all of the different areas of campus in one room to help you with planning.

Facilities

I don’t have a recycling bin in my room, where can I get one?
Please request one from your Eco Rep.
Furniture in my room is broken. How can I get it fixed?
Please fill out a work order request form. If you have other questions, please see the facilities website.
I live in a suite on campus; do I have to pay for toilet paper?
No, you can pick up toilet paper from facilities.

Health

What can I do if I have a psychological emergency?
There is a 24-hour psychological counseling hotline. If you have an emergency, call public safety. Please refer to the website for more information.
If there is something on my mind late at night, is there someone for me to talk to?
Brandeis 6-TALK (781-736-8255) is the Rape and Crisis hotline. They are available from 10 p.m.-2 a.m. every night and it is confidential and anonymous.
How do I make an appointment in the Psychological Counseling Center?
Please refer to the Psychological Counseling Center website for information about how to make an appointment.
What if I can’t afford it, but I need counseling?
Students are entitled to a number of free counseling sessions every year, please refer to the Psychological Counseling Center website for more information.
I feel that I need to talk to someone about sexuality, where can I go?
TRISK and QRC are resources for LGBTQ students and anyone else on campus. Please check the Sexualities and Gender Diversity website for more information.
What resources are available on campus for me to learn about alcohol consumption?
Please see the Health Center's website for information about drug and alcohol education.
How can I make an appointment at the Health Center?
Students are encouraged to call the Health Center at (781) 736-3677 to schedule same-day appointments. Although it is possible to schedule appointments in advance, most will be made same-day. Walk-ins are only accepted in emergency situations and students are otherwise asked to call ahead. During the academic year the Health Center is open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information about the university Health Center, please see their FAQ page.
If I need to see a doctor do I need an appointment?
Please see the Health Center's FAQ.
What specialists can I make appointments with at the Health Center?
Please see the Health Center's FAQ.
How can I get my prescription delivered to Brandeis?
The Health Center does not operate a pharmacy, but it is possible to have prescriptions delivered to the Health Center with Keyes Drugs. For more information, about Keyes and other local pharmacies, please consult the additional resources page.
What is BEMCo?
BEMCo is Brandeis' Emergency Medical Core. Please see the BEMCo website for more information.
When are flu shots usually offered?
For information about flu shots, please see the Health Center's Medical Services page.
How can I schedule a vaccine?
For information about vaccinations at the university Health Center, please see the Medical Services page.
How much do vaccines cost?
For a list of vaccination costs, please visit the Health Center's Immunization webpage.
Can anyone go to the nutritionist?
Yes, anyone can make an appointment with the nutritionist.
How much does it cost to have an appointment with the nutritionist?
There is no fee.
What are the recreational facilities on campus?
There are many recreational facilities available for students. Please see the facilities schedule and tour!
Can I really have personal training on campus?
Yes! Please see the personal training website for more information.
Can I just go to the pool for fun and is it free?
Yes! Please see the facilities schedule!
Are group fitness classes free for the Brandeis community?

Most of the Group Exercise classes are free with the exception of Cycle, Faculty/Staff Yoga and TRX (or any other specialty classes that we hold each semester). In the summer we normally only offer Cycle (fee based), F/S Yoga (fee based) and often one other Yoga (open to all) — and sometimes a boot camp/cardio sculpt (open to all). Each summer varies depending on what instructors are available to teach the classes. For more information about group fitness, cost of classes, and personal training, check out the Brandeis Athletics fitness page!


Safety

Who do I call if I have an emergency?
If you have an emergency on campus please call public safety's emergency number at 781-736-3333.
If I am on campus, do I still call 911?
Please call public safety directly (781-736-3333) because it will limit the response time.
Where can I report sexual misconduct?
Please see the Department of Student Rights and Community Standards website for full information about reporting sexual misconduct.
What happens when I report sexual misconduct on campus?
Please see the various websites that are about reporting sexual misconduct. If you have any other questions please contact the Director of Student Rights and Community Standards directly.
If I feel uncomfortable walking around campus by myself at night, is there anyone who can help me?
Please see Escort Services website for more information.
What does Escort Services do?
Please see the Escort Services website for more information.
What is the Bran Van?
Both our on-campus and Waltham shuttles have colloquially come to be called the Bran Van. However, the name “Bran Van” itself is not an official title.
How does the Bran Van work?
The shuttle, or Bran Van, transports students on and off campus, and runs on a specific schedule.
Where can the Bran Van take me?
The Bran Van can take you around campus and into Waltham. Additionally, on the weekends there is a bus into Cambridge and Boston (operated by a transportation company with which the university contracts).
I really want to go into Boston, how can I get there? Do I have to pay?
Please see Escort Services website for more information.
What are the different shuttle options on campus?
Please see Escort Services website for more information.
Do I have to pay for the campus shuttles?
No, shuttle services are free to all Brandeis students.

Student Leadership & Involvement

How can I get involved in volunteering in the Waltham community?
There are many different ways to volunteer on campus. There are Waltham Group programs and also other volunteer clubs outside of Waltham Group. Please see the Waltham Group website for more information.
How can I find out what organizations in the Waltham community Brandeis already works with?
Contact the Department of Community Service.
What is Waltham Group?
Waltham Group is the umbrella organization for community service on Brandeis' campus. Please see the Waltham Group website for more information.
What is a CORI form?
A CORI is a background check. CORI stands for criminal offender record information.
I run a service club, that is not part of Waltham Group, how can I get the guidance I need?
Contact the Department of Community Service and they will be able to help you.
I run a community service program and want a way to get other clubs involved. How can I do that?
Please contact Clubs In Service. Clubs In Service is a partnership between the Student Union, the Department of Community Service and Waltham Group to help get non-service clubs involved in service opportunities.
What is the Commitment to Service Award program?
Why does Brandeis want to track my community service hours?
Tracking your community service hours aids the larger mission of quantifying and summarizing the impact that the collective community at Brandeis makes, which helps us secure funding, as well as set future goals and standards. For a full list of the benefits to tracking your hours, please visit our Community Service ‘Tracking Hours’ page.
Why would I want to track my community service hours?
What is Student Events and how can I get involved?
Student Events is the student programming board. You can subscribe to the listserv for volunteer opportunities. The applications to join the Student Events staff are sent to the student community in the spring.
How do I plan an event on campus?
Please visit the Department of Student Activities website or attend a JumpStart meeting with your event idea.
How can I get support for leading a club?
The Department of Student Activities offers a variety of resources for student clubs and organizations.
How can I get involved in Fall Fest?
Please check the Fall Fest website to find out about student leadership and volunteer opportunities.
I love Brandeis. How can I become a tour guide?
Please contact Undergraduate Admissions for information about becoming a campus tour guide.
What is an Orientation Leader (OL) and how do I become an OL?

An Orientation Leader is a student who helps guide incoming students through their first few days at Brandeis. Being an Orientation Leader is a great leadership opportunity. Please contact the Department of Orientation for more information about the application process.

What is the Student Conduct Board and how can I get involved?
Please see the Student Rights and Community Standards website for a full description of the Student Conduct Board. There is usually an application process. Please look out for it in campus wide emails or contact the director of Student Rights and Community Standards.
Who represents me in the Student Union?
There is a senator for each class and quad.
Who are the student representatives to the Board of Trustees and Alumni Board?
There is a junior and a senior representative to each of these boards. Please see the Student Union website for the names of these student representatives.
What is the Student Service Bureau?
The Student Service Bureau is a student-run organization that offers services like summer storage, laundry and mini-fridge rentals.
Who helps to advise the Student Union president?
The Student Union President is advised by the Student Union Vice President, Chief of Staff, Treasurer, and other appointed members of the Student Union Executive Branch who are nominated by the Student Union President and confirmed by the Student Union Senate. For more information about the Brandeis Student Union, please visit the Student Union website.