Minor in Peace, Conflict and Coexistence Studies

The peace, conflict and coexistence studies (PAX) minor at Brandeis University offers you opportunities and resources to explore the rich and diverse coexistence and conflict resolution fields. It is more important than ever to understand the political, economic, religious, psychological and social underpinnings of intra- and international conflict. PAX at Brandeis examines the many meanings of "security," investigates the nature of power and political participation, contrasts "war culture" with "peace culture" and develops conflict-addressing ideas and methods that honor the integrity of all parties involved.

History of the Minor

The PAX (Latin for peace) program was founded in 1984 and initially focused on the Cold War and the nuclear threat. When the Soviet Union dissolved, attention shifted to a more universal study of coexistence and conflict resolution. The program was subsequently renamed Peace, Conflict and Coexistence Studies. 

Peace at Brandeis

Peace Room

The 2003-04 and 2004-05 Sociology of Empowerment classes created the Brandeis Peace Room. It is used for meditation, meetings of peace-related campus organizations and some PAX classes. The Peace Room is located on the first floor of the Usdan Student Center.

University Peace Monument

The Brandeis University Peace Monument was dedicated in 2002, and its mission is to serve as a physical testament to the universality of peace and the diversity at Brandeis. It is located in the circular seating area linking the Usdan Student Center, the main library and Pearlman Hall, and it is surrounded by benches and a garden. In the center of the monument is a likeness in mosaic of the Picasso peace dove, the international symbol of peace. Encircling the mosaic are tiles engraved with the word "peace" in 70 languages spoken at Brandeis and other tiles representing various symbols of peace.

Internships and Study Abroad


You are required either to write a senior honors thesis or to do an internship in a peace-oriented organization anywhere in the world. Interns are supervised by a PAX professor or staff person, keep a daily journal, present and do the reading of a bibliography on the topic of the internship and its larger framework, and write a paper of 15 to 20 pages at the end of the internship.

Study Abroad

The PAX program encourages you to study in other countries and awards up to two PAX course credits for courses taken abroad.

Awards and Fellowships

Davis Projects for Peace

The Davis Projects for Peace is an initiative that invites undergraduates to design grassroots projects to be implemented during the summer and funds eligible projects with $10,000 in grant money. The objective is to encourage and support students who wish to create and try out their own ideas for building peace.

Karpf and Hahn Peace Awards

The Karpf and Hahn Peace Awards are given annually to Brandeis students who wish to work toward coexistence and peaceful ways of addressing and resolving conflicts of many sorts. The awards are meant to enhance peace culture as it evolves in our society and elsewhere around the world. Award amounts ordinarily vary from $250 to $2,500 for each recipient.

Sorensen Fellowships

The Sorensen Fellowships offer unique opportunities for five Brandeis sophomores and juniors to integrate coursework with summer internships in the United States and overseas. Sorensen fellows receive a $4,000 stipend to cover travel and modest living expenses.

Careers and Alumni

Real Jobs
  • Forsan Hussein ’00 is the co-founder and managing director at Zaitoun Ventures.

  • Lindsay Mitnik ’16 is a campus organizer at PIRG Campus Action.

  • Shelby Magid ’15 works at the German Marshall Fund of the United States.