Maybe it’s not so bad to have some “Brandesian” pride
This editorial board acknowledges that there are many challenges and problems that we, as the Brandeis community, face at our university.
However, this board feels it is important to acknowledge and highlight some of the positive parts of this university as well. Many of the challenges that we face are largely due to structural, administrative problems, so it can feel impossible for any one individual to incite change. With that being said, this board wants to emphasize the importance of coming together as a student body in order to make Brandeis University a place that we can all be proud of. This starts with students.
At times we tend to adopt self-deprecating ideas about the school we attend. This has created a domino effect of negativity on campus that almost everyone, including members of the Justice editorial board, are guilty of contributing to. With our peers and upperclassmen pointing out the flaws of this institution, sometimes remarking that this wasn’t their first choice, it can be hard to see the University in a positive light.
However, students have the power to make this a more comfortable campus for all. Perhaps the first step in doing this is to embrace the community that already exists here. The University already has the reputation of having very kind and respectful students. In many regards, we live up to this reputation. For example, have you noticed that many students at Brandeis feel comfortable leaving their expensive belongings behind because they know their peers are respectful enough to not steal or tamper with their personal items?
Students can capitalize on this reputation by interacting with their fellow students and professors. While it can be challenging to find ways to put yourself out there, the student body has worked to create a welcoming environment.
One way that students have created a welcoming environment to everyone is by explicitly calling out discrimination and unfair treatment carried out by the administration. There are student run clubs that specifically do this work. This shows that the students truly care about fostering a safe, inclusive environment.
This board understands that the administration is far from perfect, but there have been efforts from the administration to cultivate community. Taking advantage of this structure can help create more school spirit and begin to create a sunnier outlook on life as a “Brandeisian.”
The University has subscribed to an app, called We The Jury Rewards App, which is solely dedicated to encouraging students to attend athletic events. Students can earn points by attending games that can be traded in for free merchandise. Attending an athletic event is an easy way to come together as a community and support one another, thus improving school spirit.
There are also countless ways that students have already attempted to create a fun environment. For instance, individual students have created Instagram accounts, such as @brandeis_overheard, that can help create a shared experience among students. Additionally, there are many clubs that host events that are open to all students, even if they are not members.
Many put on culture shows every year with free food. This is a great opportunity for students to take pride in the Brandeis community. There are countless clubs here on campus, and it’s worthwhile to continue to look for new clubs. A good way to discover new clubs is through CampusGroups, which is a centralized location for all clubs.
The 75th anniversary of Brandeis and Homecoming will provide opportunities for students to express school pride and spirit. Many alumni who loved their experiences at the University can help students see Brandeis in a new light. This is an amazing community and having past students express this can create a new, more positive narrative of life at Brandeis. With hundreds of clubs, incredible faculty, and a welcoming community, Brandeis students have a lot to be proud of.
The student body has leaned into a cycle of negative thoughts regarding the University, but this board wants to help remind students that there is much to take advantage of here on campus. This opens up a world of possibilities that can help make the time spent at Brandeis an enjoyable experience.