Brandeis University is a private, coeducational, nonsectarian institution of higher learning and research. Located in Waltham, Massachusetts, it has more than 3,600 undergraduate students — drawn from more than 50 states and territories and over 120 countries — and more than 2,000 graduate students. Its 366 full-time faculty includes nationally and internationally recognized teachers, scholars and researchers.
Founded in 1948 by members of the American Jewish community, Brandeis brings to American higher education a unique cultural perspective reflecting Jewish traditions of scholarship and community service and the commitment to social justice personified by Louis Dembitz Brandeis, the distinguished Supreme Court justice for whom the university is named. Although Brandeis maintains a special relationship with the Jewish community, it is not affiliated with any religious organization, it offers no theological instruction and it welcomes students and faculty of all backgrounds and beliefs.
Through a comprehensive curriculum and co-curricular activities, Brandeis presents students with a diverse array of issues and approaches to learning. At the undergraduate level, the academic focus is on the liberal arts and sciences, and no formal professional training is conducted. However, undergraduate courses are offered in legal studies, education, business, film studies, premedical studies, health policy, journalism and other areas that help students prepare for later professional training. At the graduate level, Brandeis University offers professional programs in business management, nonprofit management, international business and Jewish communal service, as well as graduate programs in the disciplines.
Brandeis is a member of the Association of American Universities, which represents the 62 leading research institutions in North America, and is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (formerly the Commission on Institutions of Higher Education of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Inc.). The research interests of the faculty span a wide range of disciplines in the sciences, social sciences, humanities and creative arts.
The university's principal components are the undergraduate School of Arts and Sciences, the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, the Heller School for Social Policy and Management, Brandeis International Business School and the Rabb School of Continuing Studies.
In addition its schools, Brandeis has more than 30 research institutes and centers that help define the unique identity of the university and make essential contributions to its academic life.
Recreational facilities include the Shapiro Campus Center, Usdan Student Center, the Sherman Student Center and the Gosman Sports and Convocation Center, one of the largest of its kind in the region. The university has an active intramural and club program and fields intercollegiate teams in eight men's and nine women's sports. Brandeis is one of eight NCAA Division III schools that compete in the University Athletic Association.
Section 2B of Chapter 151C of the Massachusetts General Laws provides that:
"Any student [...] who is unable, because of his religious beliefs, to attend classes or to participate in any examination, study or work requirement on a particular day shall be [so] excused...and shall be provided with an opportunity to make up such examination, study or work requirement which he may have missed because of such absence on any particular day; provided, however, that such makeup examination or work shall not create an unreasonable burden upon such school. No fees of any kind shall be charged [...] for making available to the said student such opportunity. No adverse or prejudicial effects shall result to any student because of his availing himself of the provisions of this section."