Staff

Laura Bellows - Senior Jewish Educator, Director of BIMA and Genesis
Laura Bellows
Senior Jewish Educator / Director of BIMA and Genesis

Laura is an educator, community builder, and artist focusing on the intersection of Torah, ecology, gender, and justice issues. She pioneered the Teva Learning Alliance’s Jewish environmental community programs for teens and youth nationally, worked as an educator and rabbinic presence at the Brandeis Collegiate Institute (in California), and has taught at and designed curriculum for Jewish high school programs across the country. Laura is an alumna of the American Jewish World Service’s Global Justice Fellowship and is the founder of the Hebrew College Eco-Ritual Lab. She has a B.A. from Oberlin College and received rabbinic ordination from the Rabbinical School of Hebrew College in Boston. When not immersed in building a more whole world with teens and young adults, Laura can be found hiking, making music, or cooking up a storm for Shabbat with her family.

Portrait photo of Lydia. In front of grayish background.
Lydia Casmier
Director, Global Youth Summit on the Future of Medicine

As Director of the Summit, Lydia works closely with all sites, partners, faculty and program staff to ensure a robust educational experience.  Her background is in social-emotional learning and college and career readiness training. Her approach to program management is driven by the Positive Youth Development (PYD) framework and her commitment to expanding college access to under-resourced and first generation students.

Prior to joining Brandeis, Lydia taught high school in Medellin, Colombia, and served six years as Senior Youth Development Coordinator at the Mary's Center Teen Program in Washington, D.C. Lydia received her Bachelor's degree from Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Lisa DeBenedictis
Director of App Design, QAA, and Service Corps

As Director, Lisa oversees the educational, co-curricular, and residential experience for three Brandeis Precollege Programs. Her background in education includes experience working with high school and college students, alumni, and community partners focusing on the arts, technology, adolescent and adult learning and development, and community engagement.

Prior to joining Brandeis, Lisa managed visual art and design courses and programs at Lesley University and, previously, worked in alumni affairs and development at Harvard University. Her background also includes teaching design courses, and serving as a residential and academic adviser at Harvard College.

Lisa has a Bachelor’s degree from Harvard College and a Master’s degree from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.