Brandeis at 75

Exceptional Results

The Brandeis method of creating science superstars is exquisitely simple: Attract great talent, nurture raw curiosity, provide keen mentorship, and cheer pioneering advances.

Graduate student researcher uses equipment in a lab

Photo Credit: Dan Holmes

By Lawrence Goodman

Over Brandeis’ short 75-year history, an astonishing number of alumni have made consequential scientific discoveries, many receiving the highest accolades in their fields, including the Nobel Prize.

How do they do it? Impressive talent and boundless curiosity are always in the mix, along with persistence, especially in the face of inevitable, sometimes yearslong setbacks.

Drew Weissman, Bonnie Berger, Leslie Lam­port, Roderick MacKinnon, Karen Uhlenbeck, and Eve Marder are in the vanguard of alumni scientists who have made discoveries that benefited human health and society, and revolutionized our understanding of nature’s mysteries.

Each of them found the joy of discovery — and self-discovery — at Brandeis.

This story originally appeared in the Summer 2023 edition of Brandeis Magazine.

‘Trying to Understand the Unknown’

By Drew Weissman ’81, GSAS MA’81, P’15, H’23

‘I Was Worth Trying to Help’

By Leslie Lamport, GSAS MA’63, PhD’72, H’17

‘Science Was More Intellectually Stimulating’

By Roderick MacKinnon ’78, H’05

‘The Best Option’

By Karen Uhlenbeck, GSAS MA’67, PhD’68, H’08