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Photos: Move-In and the first week on campus for the Class of 2025

Move-In Day at Brandeis had been scheduled for August 23, but nature had other ideas.

The forecast of Hurricane Henri prompted university leadership to urge first-year students to avoid coming to campus that Sunday. Instead, they either arrived Saturday or later in the week. But that didn’t stop the incoming class from bringing new energy and optimism to campus.

Photo/Mike Lovett

In Renfield Residence Hall, Amna Arif '25  got a hand decorating her room from Maddie Bagdade '25 before her roommate arrived on Aug. 24. Arif and Bagdade became fast friends during Pre-Orientation, which started the previous week.

"It's so exciting," Bagdade said. "There's a lot going on."

A group of first years and orientation leaders took a break on Monday to enjoy lunch in the shade near Sherman Dining Hall. From left: Jake Smith '22, Weini Xue '25, Leah Beltran '22, Lin Lin Hutchinson '25, Miriam Fisch '25 and Kristen Man '25. 

"I'm really looking forward to meeting new people," Fisch said. "It's been so wonderful so far. Everyone is so nice here."

Photo/Mike Lovett

Caitlin Gresko '25 got some help moving her things into Deroy Hall from her parents, Chris and Maria, and her brother, Matthew. They drove up on Sunday from Howell, New Jersey. Caitlin moved in on a sunny morning on Monday and is getting ready for her first season as a member of the Judges women’s basketball team.

"We're glad it worked out," Chris Gresko said.

Photo/Mike Lovett

Max Finkelstein '24, helped his brother, Sam Finkelstein '25 move into his room in Renfield Hall on Monday, along with their parents, Jen and Matt of Sharon, Mass.

"I love having them here," Jen Finkelstein said. "It's a great fit for them both."

Photo/Mike Lovett

Daniel Block '25 and Jaqueline Floro '25 tried to find their way back to their rooms at Cable Hall after wandering out on a campus adventure Monday. 

“Which one is ours?” Block said with a laugh as he looked out on North Quad.

Photo/Mike Lovett

Orientation Leaders and members of the Department of Community Living (DCL) team worked throughout the week to make sure everyone was welcomed and got what they needed. 

Photo/Mike Lovett

Alan Hawkins '25 stopped by the DCL tent in the theater lot to pick up his room key. He and his parents drove up from Weston, Conn. on Monday.

Photo/Mary Horan

Since the regular move-in schedule had to be changed, some activities were done remotely so all members of the incoming class could participate. But there were still many opportunities to meet new people and get to know campus. 

Photo/Mary Horan

On Tuesday Aug. 22, the Class of 2025 gathered outside the Rose Art Museum for the annual Light the Night event, where they hoisted candles in the sky next to the “Light of Reason” art installation.

Photo/Mary Horan

Inflatable games and slides and a mini-golf course were set up on Chapel’s Field and the Great Lawn during the week. For the first time, the university also held an Orientation for sophomores, who did not get the typical first-year orientation experience last year due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Photo/Mary Horan

By the middle of the week, any concern about Hurricane Henri had passed. The blue skies and warm weather made for a perfect environment to enjoy the activities on the Great Lawn.

Photo/Mary Horan

First-years played classic games like the three-legged race, the egg-and-spoon race and musical chairs during “First-year Face-Off” on Friday night.

At the Involvement Fair, new students had an opportunity to learn about clubs and activities around campus.

The Class of 2025 gathered for Convocation on the Great Lawn on August 29, where University President Ron Liebowitz described the values they would find at Brandeis.

“You will discover a community of diverse, bright, inquisitive, energetic, and eager learners and doers,” Liebowitz said. “Since the university’s founding in 1948, Brandeisians have been bound by some common values: a reverence for learning, the practice of critical thinking, and a commitment to tikkun olam—the Hebrew saying that roughly translates into using one’s intellectual and material gifts to help heal the world. In joining this community, you, too, have become a Brandeisian, and as you live and grow throughout your time on campus, you will find that these values will shape not only your experience here—but also your lives well after you receive your degree.”

He also encouraged them to embrace what is known in Jewish tradition as engaging in argument “for the sake of heaven” - that through intense argument and debate, one can discover the truth and better hone their personal views.

“I urge you to never enforce or condone the silence of others in your pursuit of this important undertaking—no matter how intense your disagreement with others may be,” Liebowitz said. “I encourage you to enter into such debate for the sake of heaven, so that you and those with whom you disagree come closer to the truth, and so that the lessons you take from such arguments will endure.”

Read President Liebowitz’ full Convocation remarks

Learn more about the Class of 2025

Learn about what’s new, what’s back and what’s keeping us safe on campus

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