The concept for the minor in Creativity, the Arts, and Social Transformation (CAST) was proposed by Dr. Cynthia Cohen (pictured), director of the Program in Peacebuilding and the Arts based at the International Center for Ethics, Justice and Public Life. Cohen's initial ideas were discussed and strengthened by a group of students involved in her courses and projects. A preliminary proposal was reviewed and strengthened by many members of the faculty. The Brandeis faculty approved the minor in its current form in May 2014, and Jennifer Cleary of the Department of Theater Arts joined the advisory committee as co-chair. The first students enrolled in the fall of 2014, and the introductory course was taught for the first time in the spring of 2015.
CAST is governed by an advisory committee, and is administratively hosted by the International Center for Ethics, Justice and Public Life. A student advisory committee has formed to assist with the launch of the minor and to bring students' perspectives to the shaping of the program.
The minor has received generous support to develop a community of inquiry from the Max and Sunny Howard Memorial Foundation. This funding is being used, among other things, for faculty research and creative projects, and to for events that strengthen conversations among students and faculty. This support has been made possible through the vision of Naomi Sinnreich, P'13.