Division of Students and Enrollment


The Office of the Senior Vice President for Students and Enrollment serves the needs and interests of students and has broad responsibility for the services and activities that enhance the quality of student life outside the classroom.

Among its areas of concern are undergraduate admissions, financial aid and student employment, academic advising and orientation, registrar, institutional research, student accounts and student services, including residence life, career services, student activities, intercultural programs, counseling, health services, religious life and athletics.

The senior vice president serves as an advocate for students, strives to ensure the quality of their overall cocurricular experience at the university and promotes opportunities for students to engage in leadership activities and to experience personal, social and emotional growth and development.

Academic Services

Office of Academic Services

The staff in the Office of Academic Services assist individual students in planning their undergraduate careers at Brandeis and in addressing their problems and concerns through the Committee on Academic Standing. Guidance is available in program planning and the selection of a major field of study. The office monitors the progress being made by all undergraduates toward completion of degree requirements. It coordinates academic accommodations for students with disabilities, cross-registration, premedical/prehealth advising and study abroad.

The office provides advising for Brandeis undergraduate students who seek to enrich their education through a period of study abroad. It also maintains a resource library of materials on available programs. The office provides information and assistance in obtaining international study grants available through Fulbright, Rhodes, Marshall and other scholarship and fellowship programs, including the Brandeis University Study Abroad Scholarships.

Academic Advising

Each first-year student is assigned a member of the faculty or staff to serve as a formal academic adviser during the first year. Upon declaring a major, students receive faculty advisers in their own disciplines. Each department designates an advising chair to serve the needs of all students interested in learning more about academic opportunities within the department.

Brandeis University Group Study (BUGS)
Evening drop-in tutorial assistance is offered for more than 30 courses in the university, including the 10-, 20-, and 30-levels for languages, economics and several introductory science courses.

Academic Enrichment
Workshops and individual appointments are offered on such learning strategies as time management, reading college texts, note-taking skills and exam strategies. Workshops are generally offered at the beginning of the fall and spring semesters, and individual appointments are offered throughout the academic year.

Student Support Services Program (SSSP)
The SSSP provides intensive academic advising, tutoring, mentoring and career and graduate school counseling to students who are the first in their families to attend college. Students must meet certain federal eligibility criteria to enroll in this federally funded TRIO program.

Posse Program
Posse is a four-year leadership scholarship awarded to talented high school seniors from New York City. Scholars are selected in the fall of their senior year in high school and work together to promote teamwork, communication and awareness of a diverse range of current issues on campus.

Transitional Year Program
The Transitional Year Program at Brandeis enrolls 20 talented students in a year-long academic program. Because these students have not had access to well-resourced high schools, the TYP gives them the opportunity to take both undergraduate courses and exclusive classes. These students become part of the Brandeis community upon joining the program and many stay at the university beyond the transitional year.

Writing Center
Consultants at the Writing Center assist students with their writing skills. Consultants work with students on areas such as focusing ideas, defining topics, preparing well-organized outlines, revising rough drafts and improving stylistic elements. The Writing Center is located in the Goldfarb Library. Services are available on a drop-in basis. Students may also sign up for a session online.

Information and Services for Students with Disabilities

Brandeis is committed to creating a diverse community that includes students with documented disabilities who may require reasonable accommodations in order to fully participate in the college experience and to develop their maximum academic potential.

Because admission to the university is based on the academic qualifications of the applicant, admissions procedures remain the same for all applicants, regardless of disability. Once accepted, a student seeking reasonable accommodations must provide documentation of a learning or physical disability in order to receive appropriate services at Brandeis.

Documentation of the disability should be submitted to the University Health Center or to the Psychological Counseling Center for review and evaluation. Following certification of a disability, the student should confer with the director of disabilities services and support in the Office of Academic Services, or with the disability coordinator in each of the graduate schools, regarding academic accommodations.

The student should confer with the Office of Residence Life for housing accommodations. Reasonable accommodations are determined on a case-by-case basis in consultation with the director, the student and, if appropriate, with the faculty. Services such as housing assistance, extra time on exams, note-takers, adaptive technology and special parking arrangements are some of the possible accommodations that might be utilized.

International Students and Scholars Office

The International Students and Scholars Office (ISSO), located in Kutz Hall, serves international graduate and undergraduate students as well as scholars (e.g., faculty, short-term lecturers and researchers) and alumni. The staff members of the ISSO provide all necessary immigration documents and advise international students and scholars on matters concerning their legal status in the United States, including extensions of stay, employment, transfers to and from Brandeis and leaves of absence. Advisers are available daily through drop-in visits, or by appointment, to counsel students and scholars on personal, academic and immigration-related matters throughout the year, including the summer months.

The ISSO sponsors a range of programs, including workshops on employment and immigration issues, coordinates host/student matching programs, annual trips and other events of international interest. The ISSO publishes a newsletter and maintains a web site for the international community. The ISSO supports activities that allow students and scholars to share their cultures with the entire Brandeis community.

English as a Second Language (ESL) Program

Classes and tutorials are offered in written and spoken English to students whose first language is not English. These ESL services support students in their efforts to meet the English proficiency standards necessary for their success as students and teaching assistants. Certain students are required to have their oral and written English skills evaluated during Orientation, before the beginning of classes. These students are notified in advance. On the basis of the evaluation process, a student may be advised to enroll in the English as a Second Language program.

International graduate students who are not exempted because of previous study in the United States or in other countries where the medium of instruction was English will be given an oral proficiency interview on which they must rank at least "advanced low." Graduate students who do not achieve this rank will be advised to take ESL 200a (English for Academic Purposes), an oral skills course and/or have individual tutorials. Students who rank "advanced low" or higher may still take ESL 200a and/or have individual tutorials.

The ESL program provides individual tutorial instruction to undergraduate students and individual and/or class instruction to graduate students throughout the academic year. Students do not earn course credit toward their degrees for this instruction.

Program in Library Research Strategies

As the information environment becomes more complex, instruction in the effective use of information resources becomes an increasingly integral part of education at Brandeis. Reference librarians provide classroom sessions for students at various levels.

The First-Year Library Instruction Program is part of the University Seminar curriculum. Each first-year student participates in a formal session conducted by a librarian in basic library research skills and strategies. Students learn methods for analyzing and approaching research questions and gain some experience in using basic resources, such as the online catalog and general periodicals indexes.

The Library Intensive Program serves the needs of students in more advanced courses. Selected upper-level and graduate courses incorporate library sessions geared specifically to the course or program content.

These courses offer instruction in the use of more specialized resources, such as scientific databases, full-text electronic databases, specialized abstract and indexing services, archival resources and Internet resources. Students are thus equipped to find and evaluate information from a wide variety of sources. A list of participating courses appears in the courses of instruction.

Office of the University Registrar

The Office of the University Registrar, located in Kutz Hall, is the official repository of academic records. As such, it issues official transcripts of students' records upon written request, performs other certification functions of service to students and audits the progress of students toward degree completion.

The office conducts activities in which all students participate: registration and course enrollment at the beginning of each term, and pre-enrollment in advance of each term. Staff members in the office are useful sources of information concerning registration, course enrollment regulations, summer school and transfer of credit policies and final examination procedures.

Student Life

The vice president for student affairs and dean of student life is accountable to the senior vice president for students and enrollment for coordinating the services of the following departments:

Division of Student Affairs

With offices located in the Shapiro Campus Center and in the Usdan Student Center, the Division of Student Affairs is responsible for campus programming; advising, supporting and coordinating student groups and activities; residential programs and services; the smooth operation of the Shapiro Campus Center, Usdan Student Center and Intercultural Center; a vibrant community service effort; and other campus programs such as Orientation and Family Weekend. The division offices include student development and conduct, residence life, student activities, community service, the Intercultural Center, Orientation and First-Year Programs, Athletics, the Chaplaincy, Health Services, the Counseling Center, and the dean of student life. The division staff, in conjunction with students and faculty, provides integrated learning opportunities through a variety of social, cultural and intellectual events during the academic year.

Residence Life

More than 85 percent of undergraduate students live in residence halls. As with all indoor space at the university, residence halls are smoke-free. First-year students are assigned to double rooms or lofted tripled rooms on corridors with shared bathrooms. The university accepts requests but cannot promise to assign entering students to specific roommates or honor requests for assignment with another student with a particular religious or cultural background. Returning students choose accommodations through a housing selection process held each spring.

With the exception of the entering midyear class, incoming students are guaranteed four consecutive semesters of on-campus living. For the purposes of room selection, the midyear class is considered a part of the rising sophomore class and is guaranteed three consecutive semesters of on-campus living.

In recent years, upperclass students not housed through the lottery found off-campus housing or were eventually accommodated on campus through a waiting list process. Entering transfer students are admitted with the understanding that they may not be eligible for on-campus housing.

The Department of Residence Life is responsible for the effective administrative operation, as well as advising and programming activities, within all residence halls. Residence halls are grouped into 10 living areas ranging in size from 200 to 500 students. Each area is under the supervision of a professional, full-time community development coordinator.

In addition, student resident staff, known as community advisors, live in the residence halls and assist with the development of student-directed communities, as well as administrative tasks. Staff members are available to provide assistance to students on academic, personal and social matters.

Brandeis offers a limited number of housing units to graduate students. The apartment units offered include two-, three-, and five-bedroom apartments. These units are designed to allow use as separate bedrooms with a shared kitchen and bath. Some of the larger units also have living rooms. All of the apartments come furnished.

Housing applications are sent to eligible graduate students by May 1 and must be returned to the individual graduate schools by May 31.

In addition, the Department of Residence Life maintains a listing of available housing in the off-campus area. For additional information, please visit the Department of Residence Life office in the Usdan Student Center, call 781-736-5060, or consult the Web site.

The first-year experience programs are a year-long series of programs that complement and extend the educational mission of the university and focus on first-year student development, transfer connections and commuter involvement in the Brandeis community. First-year programs provide opportunities for and encourage increased contact between first-year students, their advisers, faculty, staff and the community as a whole.

The programs specifically address the core values developed within the Division of Student Affairs and focus on developing the whole student. These programs prepare new students for the challenges of an intellectual and academically rigorous environment, as well as for living and learning in a pluralistic and diverse community.

First-Year Experience: Spirit, Mind, and Body, is a class taught under the PE umbrella and offered to first-year students. The class is offered for 15 students each semester and fulfills one of their two PE requirements. It provides new students with the background and skills needed to become effective and engaged citizens in a variety of fields and disciplines; creates positive relationships with students, faculty and staff; and exercises their spirit, mind and body.

New students will be educated and empowered to transfer the skills learned in the classroom to the real world and personal interactions, and the course will help them become contributing citizens of the Brandeis community and beyond throughout their lives.

Community Service

The Department of Community Service is dedicated to providing students, faculty and staff with relevant volunteer experiences that match the needs of our neighbors, as well as the skills and interests of the Brandeis population. The department seeks to establish sustainable and reciprocal partnerships with local social service, governmental, educational and cultural agencies as we advise and support community service initiatives.

Endeavors include fostering a community member who is civically engaged as an advocate, volunteer and educated citizen. We strive to embody the pillars of the university and core values of the Division of Student Affairs through experiential service opportunities, collaboration with the academy on Community-Engaged Learning initiatives and intentional reflection.

Student service outreach is done primarily through the Waltham Group, Brandeis' student-led community service organization. The Waltham Group was founded in 1966 in response to student activism and in recognition of the university's responsibility to be engaged citizens of the community. Over 500 students volunteer each year through the 17 Waltham Group programs, making it the largest student organization on campus.

Intercultural Center

The Intercultural Center (ICC), located in the Swig Student Center, fosters an atmosphere for learning about the histories and cultures of people of color; provides a healthy framework and meeting space for discovery and strengthening of cultural commonalities; enables the university to address issues of race; and provides a structure for the Brandeis community to interact from an intercultural perspective.

With a student programming board and a faculty/staff/alumni/community advisory board, the ICC sponsors cultural, social and intellectual programs open to all members of the Brandeis community. Some academic classes meet in the center.

Orientation Programs

The department develops, advises, manages and evaluates all elements of a comprehensive new student orientation program for the fall arrivals and the midyear students.

The Orientation program is designed, coordinated and implemented by an Orientation core committee of student leaders who are chosen through a selective process in the fall. They participate in leadership training and work during the year, as well as throughout the summer, to create a week-long series of educational and social programs that help new students with their transition into Brandeis.

The Orientation core committee also selects over one hundred Orientation leaders, who come back two weeks early for an orientation leader training program to help implement the Orientation program itself.

Religious Life on Campus

Religious activities and related programs are centered in the three chapels and are conducted by the student religious organizations: Berlin Chapel/Hillel at Brandeis University, the Bethlehem Chapel Community, and the Harlan Chapel Christian Community. Interfaith dialogue is an integral part of the programs of the three chapels.

Hillel, the foundation of the Jewish student community on campus, is a multifaceted and pluralistic undertaking that embraces and welcomes Jews of all persuasions and interests. Hillel actively seeks to engage Jewish students on their own terms: to provide them with opportunities to express themselves "Jewishly" that are meaningful and appealing to them.

Students are empowered to take responsibility for their Jewish identity, whether they wish to participate in a community service project, express themselves artistically, participate in a social event, engage in informal Jewish learning or attend religious services. Any student may participate in Hillel – no membership is required. Hillel is committed to a pluralistic vision of Judaism that embraces all movements.

The Bethlehem Chapel Community serves the total Catholic community at Brandeis: students, faculty and staff. There are Sunday and daily Masses, hours for private and group consultation, seminars, study groups, holy day and feast day programs and other events.

The Harlan Chapel Christian Community serves the Protestant community at Brandeis and presents a variety of services and programs including religious services, poetry readings, films, and speakers. The Christian Fellowship and the Brandeis University Gospel Choir are under the sponsorship of the Harlan Chapel Christian Community.

Brandeis has an active Muslim Students Association that works to meet the social and religious needs of the Muslim community on campus. With the leadership of a professional adviser, Friday Jumma Prayers, Islam Awareness Weeks and other activities are planned to accommodate our Muslim community, while educating other members of the Brandeis community regarding Islam and Muslims. Today, there is a dedicated prayer room for the Muslim community that is also home to the Muslim Student Association.

The campus chaplains and the Muslim cleric serve as advisers to these groups and are available to all persons within the university community for personal and religious counseling and informal exchange.

Hiatt Career Center

Located in Usdan Student Center, the Hiatt Career Center purposely and rigorously prepares students and recent alumni to transform their unique backgrounds and academic and experiential learning into meaningful professional futures, and to position themselves as highly desirable candidates for employers and graduate schools both domestically and throughout the world.

Hiatt staff members assist students and young alumni in assessing their interests and skills and exploring how these can translate into meaningful career paths. Students receive individual counseling to identify specific career goals within the wide range of opportunities available to liberal arts graduates.

The center also conducts a wide array of career development programs in cooperation with faculty, the Office of Academic Services and other departments to assist students with their career development and graduate school preparation. The staff includes a pre-law adviser dedicated to working with students interested in law school and law careers.

In addition to personalized assistance with resumes, cover letters and mock interviews, the Hiatt staff works with students to assess their skills, values and interests; to explore a wide array of career paths using different mediums such as in-depth research tools, access to alumni networking opportunities, career panels and other events; and to help connect them to meaningful work and graduate school opportunities through an on-campus recruitment program, job postings and a comprehensive internship program.

Students are encouraged early in their Brandeis experience to participate in various experiential programs to gain real-world perspective through the alumni network, the shadowing program and the internship program. Beginning as early as the first year, the Hiatt shadowing experience allows students to spend a day with Brandeis alumni in the workplace.

The internship program, most often pursued in the sophomore and junior years, offers students hundreds of opportunities in a full range of professional areas. The Hiatt Career Center also oversees several programs that provide substantial grants to students to fund internships that would otherwise be unpaid. Internships provide important experiences that complement liberal arts course work and may be eligible for academic credit or transcript notation (see Internships for Credit section).

The center strives to combine individualized attention with state-of-the-art online resources and databases. Students are constantly advised of upcoming events and career opportunities so that they can select those appropriate to their goals.

The Hiatt Center is open during the week for both individual and walk-in appointments.


Recognizing the importance of physical activity in a sound educational program, Brandeis offers a wide variety of competitive and recreational opportunities. The intercollegiate athletic program provides a challenging and enjoyable growth experience for Brandeis student-athletes, as well as providing a focus for campus spirit and pride. All full-time students may participate in annual varsity team tryouts.

The university fields varsity teams for men in baseball, basketball, cross country, fencing, golf, indoor and outdoor track, soccer, swimming and diving, and tennis. Women compete in varsity basketball, cross country, fencing, indoor and outdoor track, soccer, softball, swimming and diving, tennis, and volleyball. The varsity squads compete against teams representing colleges and universities that regard athletics in the same spirit as Brandeis.

In addition, the university offers a club sports program with 22 teams ranging from crew to Tae Kwon Do. Brandeis is a member of the NCAA (Division III), Eastern College Athletic Conference and the University Athletic Association, which provides national competition among its eight-member private research universities. The university has fielded conference and national championship teams as well as many national-caliber individual competitors.

Believing in the value of athletic participation for conditioning and relaxation, the university maintains a full array of intramural and recreation programs. The intramural program has included basketball, flag football, soccer, softball, squash, tennis, and volleyball. Recently, nontraditional sports such as dodge ball and whiffle ball have been added. The new lighted artificial turf athletic field has stimulated additional activity. Residence hall and commuter teams have been organized in these sports with the competitive aspects adding to the enjoyment of the game.

Health Center

The Brandeis Health Center is operated by Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. A health center fee, mandatory for undergraduates and optional for graduate students, entitles students to medical services at the Golding Health Center without additional charge during the academic year. This annual health fee does not cover off-campus medical consultations, dental care, medications, laboratory tests, drugs, X-rays, reusable supplies, psychological testing or hospital admission. These costs are billed to the student’s insurer. Students are responsible for these charges if rejected by the insurer.

During the academic year, the Health Center is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. The center is closed between noon and 1:15 p.m. on the first and third Thursday of each month. Hours of operation change during intersession, midterm, spring recesses and the summer months.

In addition, and separate from the health center fee, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts requires each student to have personal health insurance. Undergraduate students may elect to participate in the Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP) offered through the university or may have private insurance. SHIP is an accident or illness plan. Graduate students may elect to participate in one of two different insurance plans offered through the university or may have private insurance. For additional information on SHIP, please contact the Health Center at 781-736-3677.

Prospective students planning to matriculate in the college and graduate schools must submit a Health Examination Report (HER) completed by the personal physician prior to registration.

In addition to information about previous health and details of the physical examination, evidence of immunization against tetanus, measles, mumps, rubella, hepatitis B and meningococcal meningitis is required. A skin test for tuberculosis is recommended.

As students may not register for courses in the fall until the requirements have been satisfied, it is strongly recommended that the Health Examination Report be submitted by July 30.

Psychological Counseling Center

Established in 1952 as one of the first university counseling centers in the United States, the Brandeis Psychological Counseling Center, located in Mailman House, has continued to serve as a model for others of its kind. Founded on the premise that the best learning occurs in an environment that supports individual growth, the center strives to help students integrate new information and experiences and expand their understanding of themselves in the world.

The center offers the services of a diverse and accomplished staff that endorses a twofold approach to working with students. It promotes a "wellness" model of care, which is aimed at helping students anticipate times of stress and encourages them to ask for help with their most immediate concerns.

No concern is too large or too small to be met with respect and care. In addition, the staff brings skill and expertise to the deeper developmental and psychological issues that confront our student population and is prepared to address these more difficult emotional conflicts. As an essential and integral aspect of our efforts to provide an environment where students are free to seek help, the center maintains the strictest standards of privacy and confidentiality.

Student Conduct System

The university establishes standards of student behavior and reserves the right to take appropriate disciplinary action, including suspension or dismissal, when a student's conduct warrants such action. The university will give notice and, if requested, a hearing before the appropriate body.

The student conduct system is administered by the Department of Student Development and Conduct. Standards, policies and procedures are published in the booklet "Rights and Responsibilities" and can be found online.

Student Activities

Staff in the Department of Student Activities offers and provides leadership development, training and guidance to student leaders and to clubs and organizations. The department is involved in supporting major programming efforts on campus and in providing a number of leadership opportunities for Brandeis students.

The student programming board, Student Events, has the responsibility for the allocation of a portion of the student activities fee to support social, cultural and educational programs.

The Department of Student Activities is committed to enhancing the student experience outside the classroom; supporting university-recognized clubs and organizations; and encouraging creative learning and leadership development.

For programs such as Fall Fest, our Family Weekend program, and SunDeis, the student film festival, the department integrates student planning committees into every aspect of the program planning to increase leadership skills and to provide lifelong learning. In addition to developing leaders and citizens, one of the mainstays of any university is its social life. The staff within the department of Student Activities work alongside the leaders of our 250 clubs and organizations to create a vibrant and diverse social environment. 

In addition to working with major programming and student organizations, Student Activities also manages several student-oriented facilities. The staff manages the Shapiro Campus Center, the Usdan Student Center, the Student Service Bureau, Usdan Game Room, and Cholmondeley's Coffeehouse. These facilities along with several others, meet the demands of our community throughout the academic year. Find out more about the programs and services the department of Student Activities provides.

Student Organizations

A variety of student organizations exist for all who are interested. Organizations are open to any matriculated student on the basis of competency or interest. For a more extensive look at the clubs and organizations that are active on campus, please visit http://my.brandeis.edu/clubs/

Exclusive or secret societies are inconsistent with the principles of openness to which the university is committed. Therefore, social fraternities and sororities, in particular, are neither recognized nor permitted to hold activities on campus, use university facilities or use the name of the university.

Student Government

Brandeis students consider themselves part of a community dedicated to the advancement of liberal values, the enrichment of life experience and the broadening of knowledge. Organized through the undergraduate Student Union and the Graduate Student Association, their prime responsibilities are to create a democratic student organization, increase the flow of new ideas and provide enjoyable and creative recreational and cultural activities for all students.

The Student Union is the assembly of the entire undergraduate student body. The Student Senate, funded through the mandatory student activities fee, consists of elected officers and elected representatives from each class and each residence quadrangle, who meet regularly to conduct its business and supervise its programs.

The Graduate Student Association (GSA) is the assembly of all graduate students. The Graduate Student Senate consists of elected officers and elected representatives from each academic department offering a graduate degree. Cultural, social and educational programs are organized by the GSA throughout the year. There is a GSA lounge in Kutz Hall.

Students also serve as members of a variety of university committees, including the University Curriculum Committee, the Personal Safety Committee, the Parking Appeals Board, the Community Relations Committee, and the Conservation Committee. Two undergraduates and one graduate student also serve as representatives to the Board of Trustees and the National Alumni Association Board of Directors.