News and Updates


ENACT Students Meet With Massachusetts Legislative Advocates

January 31, 2023

The students of the Brandeis ENACT course "Advocacy for Policy Change" (LGLS 161b) recently met in January with advocates from nine Massachusetts organizations. Each advocate discussed their issue and the related legislation being proposed at the Massachusetts State House, encouraging ENACT students to focus on the related bill in their ENACT work.

Photo of students, taken by David Weinstein

Pictured: Brandeis ENACT students meet with representatives and leaders from Citizens for Juvenile Justice, Mass NOW (the Massachusetts chapter of the National Organization for Women), the Massachusetts Immigrant & Refugee Advocacy Coalition (MIRA), Health Care For All, the Massachusetts Coalition for the Homeless, the Massachusetts Rivers Alliance, Reproductive Equity Now and the Massachusetts Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence.


Maia Lefferman ‘25 connects Brandeis University's VoteDeis Coalition, supported by ENACT, with college-based nonpartisan voter engagement efforts in greater Boston through her representation and work with Boston Votes. During the past few years, Boston Votes has held summits to gather the students, faculty and staff across the coalition to continue strengthening student and campus voter participation efforts.

Professor Myers and his students at the RI State House
ENACT Faculty Fellow Adam Myers and Students visit the Rhode Island State House

April 21, 2022

During the 2022 Spring semester, Professor Adam Myers and students from his Public Analysis and Advocacy course visited Rhode Island State House. Students were able to meet and learn from State Rep. Rebecca Kislak as well as develop a greater understanding of public policy and advocacy at the State level. Professor Myers is a part of the Political Science Department at Providence College.

ENACT Pilot Evaluation Report Cover Image

ENACT Pilot Evaluation Report Cover Image

February 1, 2022

Ethics Center Director Melissa Stimell, with Brandeis graduate student Kaitie Chakoian and Brandeis alum Charlotte Powley, PhD, surveyed and interviewed alumni from 10 years of the Brandeis ENACT Advocacy for Policy Change course (LGLS 161b), which was developed by Stimell and has been taught by her since 2011.

This course is the model for the Ethics Center's national, 50-state program ENACT: The Educational Network for Active Civic Transformation.

The results from this ENACT Pilot Evaluation Report shows the impact of Ethics Center's ENACT course on alumni civic engagement and career trajectories.

Among the conclusions:

ENACT alumni have high levels of political efficacy. They feel well-qualified to engage with the political process and believe that doing so can have an impact on political outcomes. As a result, they are much more civically engaged than the average U.S. resident. They vote at substantially higher rates and engage in various other ways. ENACT alumni retain the knowledge they learned in the class about the political process, even years after completing it. They also retain skills (speaking and writing clearly, working effectively with others, and evaluating data sources) that have helped them in their professional work — whether that work is policy-related or completely unrelated. In addition to these skills, ENACT alumni credit the networks they developed and the mentorship of ENACT faculty with the trajectories their careers have taken since leaving Brandeis.

Read the full report

Students and Legislative standing with Thomas Jefferson Statue

Randolph-Macon College ENACT students Cade Jones, Sam Dantzler and Owen Arruza at the Virginia State Capitol in January with Rhena Hicks, Legislative Aide for Virginia State Delegate Kelly Convirs-Fowler. (Also pictured: Thomas Jefferson.)

January 24, 2022

"Student-to-Student Support: The ENACT Student Delegates," ENACT Student Delegates Elaina Pevide '20 and Alison Cantor '22 explore new ways of strengthening ties between ENACT classes.

ENACT: The Educational Network for Active Civic Transformation expands to all 50 states with its first virtual institute.


Student walking down sidewalk, which has chalk messages promoting voting.

Photo Credit: Noah Zeitlin/The Justice

October 20, 2020

The Ethics Center's Leigh Swigart and David Weinstein spoke with The Justice about their role in the formation of the VoteDeis coalition, a nonpartisan campus initiative dedicated to ensuring all eligible students are registered and have a plan to vote.

October 6, 2020

The ENACT program at Brandeis University organizes nonpartisan Brandeis campus coalition supporting voter registration and participation.

homepage of ENACT's new online platform

Homepage of ENACT's new online platform.

September 15, 2020

Brandeis students Hangyu Du ’21 and Nicole (Huiyan) Zhang ’21 create, a custom digital resource sharing platform for the national ENACT network, with support from a grant from the New York-based Teagle Foundation.


ENACT event puts spotlight on young political leadership

March 10, 2020

The forum at Brandeis discussed of the challenges and opportunities for young people in politics, and the politics and political advocacy careers of four young state legislators: Connecticut state Rep. Quentin Phipps, Maine state Rep. Harold "Trey" Stewart III, Massachusetts state Sen. Diana DiZoglio and Massachusetts state Rep. Maria Duaime Robinson.

State senator, city councilor appear at 'Voting and Democracy' panel

March 9, 2020

The panel, "Voting and Democracy in 2020 and Beyond," featured a discussion by Boston City Councilor Lydia Edwards and Massachusetts state Sen. Becca Rausch ’01 on voter engagement, access and suppression.

March 5, 2020

In the seminar "Civic Engagement in Action: Citizens and Policy Advocacy," Associate Professor Stella Rouse at the University of Maryland split students into teams to choose, study and advocate for specific bills now under consideration in Annapolis.

August 28, 2019

ENACT Faculty Fellow Candis Watts Smith was quoted in the New York Times opinion piece "We Aren't Seeing White Support for Trump for What It Is."

August 7, 2019

Three students from the University of Maine will join students from three states to join the national pilot program of the ENACT Labor Network to engage with lawmakers and study policy and advocacy on state and national levels.


May 28, 2019

"Brandeisians Leading Through Legislation" looks at the ENACT program and student participation in classes and events.

May 17, 2019

"We are delighted to support expansion of the ENACT program," said Andrew Delbanco, president of the Teagle Foundation, whose $350,000 gift will make the expansion possible. "Helping young people to understand and engage in deliberative democracy is an urgent task, and Brandeis is showing a way forward."

April 8, 2019

Massachusetts state Sens. Diana DiZoglio and Cindy Friedman and Kentucky state Rep. Attica Scott discussed their careers in politics and political advocacy, as well as their perspectives on political engagement — particularly at the state level — in conversation with the students from ENACT courses around the United States.

ENACT joins CivXNow Coalition

April 5, 2019

ENACT has affiliated with the CivXNow coalition, a task foce that aims to prepare youth across America to be active participants of civic life. They support civic education through advocacy and investment. ENACT joins a cohort of over 100 member organizations, academic and research institutions, and other supporters from across the political spectrum.

March 22, 2019

ENACT has been awarded a Multi-Institutional Innovation Project grant by Bringing Theory to Practice. The award will support ENACT's work engaging undergraduates across the Unites States directly in the process of state legislative change.

February 25, 2019

ENACT students from Brandeis and the University of Louisville participated in a conversation with Massachusetts state Sen. and Senate Pro Tempore Will Brownsberger (D-Suffolk/Middlesex) regarding the role of committees in the legislative process. The students in Kentucky joined the class, which took place at Brandeis live via Zoom.

February 13, 2019

Students discussed the bills they are working on this semester, gained insight into where these bills stand in the legislative process and discussed how they might help move the bills forward.

November 27, 2018

In a recent Urban Affairs Review article, Mead discussed his graduate-level policy course at Cleveland State University, which requires students to lobby on a public-policy issue, and recognizes ENACT as a similar opportunity for undergraduate students.

jacket of "Black Politics in Transition"

September 12, 2018

ENACT congratulates Smith, an assistant professor of public policy at the University of North Carolina, and co-editor Christina M. Greer of Fordham University on the publication of "Black Politics in Transition: Immigration, Suburbanization and Gentrification" (Routledge).

jacket of "The Politics of Millennials"

August 9, 2018

ENACT congratulates Rouse, an associate professor of government and politics at the University of Maryland, and co-editor Ashley D. Ross of Texas A&M University on the publication of "The Politics of Millennials: Political Beliefs and Policy Preferences of America's Most Diverse Generation" (University of Michigan Press).

Female student, seated at table, speaks with her adviser

July 24, 2018

Sage Rosenthal ’19 reflects on how ENACT prepared her for a Capitol Hill congressional internship.

July 16, 2018

Myeisha Boyd, Marian Gardner, Mark Hickey and Miranda Robert found a lot to like about their year as ENACT student delegates.