Located 30 minutes outside of Boston in Waltham, Massachusetts, sits Brandeis University, housing just over 3,600 undergraduate students from 54 different countries. Boasting a fairly decent international population, you’ll find new experiences interacting with your classmates fairly easily! The university itself is fairly big and on a sunny October day, I was able to see the leaves beginning to change their colors to the bold Fall colors. As a Californian myself, this was quite a treat.
My alumni had just began his Freshman year and was living in the Shapiro dorms as he walked me around campus. As a computer science major his course load Freshman year was quite hefty, although he enjoyed the smaller class sizes and teaching styles of the professor. Feeling challenged, yet finding his routine in studying, he was doing quite well.
Academically speaking, Brandeis offers a pretty flexible curriculum for students to explore as they move towards their major coursework. As we walked around I saw students studying, hanging out, a professor walking her dog and just an overall friendly welcoming environment. I got a sense of community here, which I can imagine as a student who is out-of-state, or even international, can be quite important.
My student was sharing the active student body participation in clubs, social activism and groups. I found the vibe of the student body to be smart, passionate and involved, while prioritizing academics…which can be perfect for the right student.
Brandeis has three chapels on campus serving faiths in Judaism, Catholicism and Protestant. Each putting on services and welcoming students. There is also quite an active Hillel on campus for Jewish students.
Side note: If you are a Jewish student and researching how active Jewish life is on college campuses, this is a GREAT resource: https://www.hillel.org/
Shuttles will take students into Waltham and Boston which is convenient, and students can also find Division III sports on campus to participate in or attend games.
Overall I found Brandeis to be quite strong in its student community, attention from professors and academics. But again, that’s ONE opinion. Visiting can be an incredible way to get a feel for a university and EACH student will prioritize different things within their college search process. So I encourage you…take the time to research, visit and ask questions. Know what you value academically, socially, culturally, etc. And dive on in!
I always encourage students and families to go DIRECTLY to a college’s website for the most up-to-date information on admissions, academics and find their regional admissions counselor for more specific guidance.