“What if…” asked a student in an early planning meeting in 2011… “What if we had a festival of social justice? What if clubs and professors from all around campus came together to examine what ‘social justice’ really means from a variety of perspectives, and to celebrate the ways Brandeisians contribute to making the world better?”
From that meeting, ‘Deis Impact (short for Brandeis) was born.
During the first seven years, the International Center for Ethics, Justice and Public Life hosted and facilitated ‘Deis Impact. In 2019, the program shifted to the Office of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion (ODEI). In this transition year, ‘Deis Impact capitalized on momentum cultivated from previous years and endeavored to expand its impact — including more graduate student programs and increased collaborations on programming opportunities.
The program also invested in the student coordinating committee, known as the Impacters, by providing each with a stipend and intentional workshops to develop leadership skills.
A critical feature for 2019 was selecting a theme, What is Social Justice?: Consciously Exploring Oppression Power, and Privilege, giving each of the 56 programs a unifying thread. A review to assess and ultimately enhance the opportunity for impact took place in the spring and summer of 2019.
Questions to Explore During 'Deis Impact
What does social justice mean to me in theory? What about in practice?
Does trying to define the term help us think more clearly and work together more productively? Or is trying to define it a useless rhetorical exercise?
How can I get involved more effectively in social justice work?
How will I be different as a result of my learning from programs during this week?