The Heller School for Social Policy and Management

Event Planning at Heller

Students are more than welcome to plan events at the Heller School. In order to maintain better coordination and communication of these events, we require all event plans to be submitted for approval of date, time and space, before any event or guest speaker can be confirmed. It is important not to book a speaker, or confirm a date unless you have already spoken to Student Services and the Heller Events team.

In order to keep an open line of communication with the entire community, students should follow these steps to get their event approved, then refer to other pages on this site for helpful tips (including information about flyers, posters, liquor policy, etc.):

  1. Complete an online Event Request Form at least two weeks prior to your event. 
  2. Contact the Office of the Dean (Meaghan Cummings) at least two weeks, or earlier, if you want to invite Dean David Weil to present or introduce a presenter.

Inviting Guests and Presenters to Campus

At the Heller School, we encourage faculty, staff and students to bring together scholars and public officials of all backgrounds, religions, opinions and political views and encourage a peaceful discourse.

For Heller to be responsive and supportive of your event, there are certain steps you must follow.

  1. Before inviting an outside guest to speak at Heller you must send an email to the Heller Events Team describing the event, providing information on the speaker, the audience for the event, and whether or not you would be interested in having Dean David Weil attend and/or introduce the speaker.
  2. Once the Events Team receives this email, they will contact you with potential dates for the event. You should not offer any dates to a speaker until you hear back from the Events Team.
  3. Using the dates from the Events Team you can then coordinate with the speaker to confirm the date they will be coming to Heller. If none of the dates provided by the Events Team work for the speaker please send another email to the Heller Events Team noting this. They will work with you to identify additional options that you can share with the speaker.
  4. Once the date is confirmed with the speaker, submit a Rooms and Events Request Form.

    There are certain circumstances in which you must contact the Office of the Dean before contacting Heller Events when inviting an outside speaker to campus: They include:

    • President Liebowitz or Dean David Weil would be expected to attend or participate.
    • Security issues would be involved.
    • The event may cause disruption of other university activities.
    • Heller or University funding would be requested.

     In these situations contact the Office of the Dean (Meaghan Cummings).

For Student Working Groups  

Working Groups at the Heller School, sponsored by Academic and Student Services, provide students an outside-the-classroom opportunity to work together with other students, faculty, and staff who share a commitment and common interest in an issue related to some part of Heller’s mission. Working Groups often form around issues that cut across many or all of Heller’s degree programs. Some Working Groups carry over from academic year to academic year. These groups have continuity and are ready to begin their activity when school commences in late August. Other Working Groups form during the year as new student interests emerge.

How to set up a New Working Group

If you have an area of interest that you would like to pursue further while at Heller, the first step is to consult the list of current working groups (below) to determine if you can work with an existing group. If you would like to form a new Working Group you should meet with the Assistant Dean of Academic and Student Services, Ravi Lakshmikanthan, to discuss your idea(s). Prior to the meeting you must draft a short introduction to the objectives, goals and proposed activities of the Working Group.

Guidelines for Working Groups

If possible Working Groups are asked to participate in a student opportunities fair in the fall semester to give the Heller community an opportunity to learn about the group and to join those groups that match their interest. Working Groups planning a community event can apply to student services for funds (more information below). Each Working Group can apply for up to $500 to use throughout the academic year. Event budgets must be approved by the Assistant Dean for Academic and Student Services office prior to the event and cannot be used as a one-time payment.  The process for obtaining funds is as follows:

1) After coming up with an event open to the Heller community the group should submit an Event form to the Heller Events Team. The event form can be found here: The Heller Events Team will then confirm if a room is available on the requested date.

*NOTE: You must have a confirmation email from Heller Events before inviting a speaker, creating flyers, or requesting refreshments *

2) If the group will be requesting funds for a community event, they must create a detailed budget including the name of the item(s), cost(s), and purpose(s).  If more than one working group will sponsor an event then each group must agree to pool funds, and identify individual(s) responsible for the purchases.

3) At least two weeks before the event submit a working group budget request form using this form:

4) A confirmation email will be sent to the organizer regarding funding. The group will be responsible for any amount exceeding the approved budget.

5) Once funding is confirmed contact Victoria Corpian ( in Student Services to access your funds. Please note funds are given on a reimbursement basis, so it is important to keep all receipts *Purchases should not be made before approval

6) Flyers: Student Services can provide up to 2 color copies of flyers for an event (need to provide a PDF version at least one week prior to the event). Once the event has been approved please email with a PDF of the flyer.

Examples of approved funding expenses include:

  • Food for a community event
  • Rental of a movie to show during a community movie event

Examples of unapproved expenses include:

  • Food for the group meeting
  • Honorarium for a speaker
  • Gift Cards
  • Any group exclusive events/meetings (i.e. a group trip to the movies would not be approved for funding)


For more information on planning an event at Heller please visit this website:

To invite all Heller students to your event, please send the invitation email to


Ravi Lakshmikanthan, Assistant Dean Academic and Student Services (

19-20 Working Groups and Contacts:

#1619 Project

Contact Kaleigh Mency,, and Cheyenne Evans,


The #1619 Project from The New York Times re-examines the history and legacy of slavery in the United States and its impacts on the country today. This working group creates space for students to dissect and reflect on the articles together and analyze how the issues talked about in the Project manifests in our everyday lives and what we can do to solve them. If you want to learn about the United States' history, the true history, then this working group is perfect for you!

4th Annual Hult Prize Challenge

Contact Max Brodsky,


The Hult Prize is a worldwide student social enterprise competition for those interested in changing the world. Participants will present an idea for a social impact venture to a panel of judges at Brandeis with an accelerated track to the regional competition in Boston. See a video from last year's competition. Register here.  

7th Annual Heller Startup Challenge, October 18-20, 2019

Contact Elizabeth Nguyen,, or Joel Pugh,  


The startup challenge is a 3-day event for students to innovate, collaborate, develop, and pitch their startup social enterprise ideas. Teams of participants will present an idea for a social impact venture to a panel of esteemed judges at Brandeis. The winning team receives prize money! Register here.  


Asian Baptist Student Koinonia (ABSK)

Contact Ziqi Zhang,


Grad Asian Baptist Student Koinonia (ABSK) is a student group dedicated to the pursuit of Jesus Christ in our everyday lives as graduate students! We conduct weekly Bible studies on campus to help the graduate students understand about the meaning of life from God’s perspective.

Black Graduate Student Association (BGSA)

Contact Adrianna Shy,


The Black Graduate Student Association (BGSA) at Brandeis is an interdisciplinary graduate student organization designed for Black graduate students to know and support each other both on and off campus. Membership is open to any graduate student at Brandeis. BGSA aims to meet the professional, academic, and social needs of Black graduate students through the following three avenues: (1) by providing professional networking opportunities and scholarly activities on and off campus; (2) by providing social opportunities for members to relax and relate through recreational entertainment (Black Joy), and (3) by connecting with the black undergraduate community to foster a pipeline to graduate school through mentorship and social activities.

Brandeis University African Forum

Contact Professor Assan,


The Brandeis University African Forum is a working group of African students and other members of Heller who are interested in African history and culture. Some of its activities include 1) organizing various panels with a focus on African socio-economic and political context; 2) coordinating cultural events that reflect African and African descent culture and history; 3) creating a network with other African Student Associations in the U.S. 

Brandeis Graduate Christian Fellowship

Contact Danielle Chun,


We are a multi-ethnic community, gathering for food, friendship, and conversation about life and the intersection of faith and profession. We meet weekly from 5-6 pm on Thursdays in the Harlan Chapel to study different passages of the Bible together and talk about integrating faith in our work and learning. We welcome everyone and would love to get to know you!

Brandeis Queer Graduate Student Union

Contact Margo Worman,


Brandeis Queer Graduate Student Union is a student organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, and asexual graduate students. The group builds community among LGBTQ+ graduate students at all three graduate schools (Heller, IBS, GSAS). In addition to monthly meetings, BQGSU organizes social events including potlucks, board game nights, and happy hours.

Critical Discussions Working Group

Contact Jeffri Navarro,


Description not available.

DisABILITY Working Group

Contact Mel Ptacek,


The Heller Disability Working Group meets regularly to discuss issues facing Heller students with disabilities, both visible and invisible. We participate in a wide range of Heller School and Brandeis-wide events and we bring important issues and concerns to the attention of the Heller and wider communities. Most fundamentally, we work for positive change. 

Environmental Working Group

Contact Omar Saho,, and Joel Pugh,


The Environmental Justice Working Group brings students together to raise awareness around local and global environmental issues and to promote environmental justice and sustainable practices on- and off-campus. 

Gender Working Group

Contact Professor Espinosa,


The GWG approaches development from a gender perspective by making space in the development dialogue for discourse surrounding gender inequality, gender identity, and sexuality. Our goal is to be as inclusive and intersectional as possible, and to foster important and meaningful discussions through speakers, movie screenings, discussion groups, and campaigns.

Global Goals Working Group (GGWG)

Contact Omotoyosi Oyebanji,


The Global Goals Working Group exist to promote and create awareness about the Sustainable Development Goals on campus, taking action through creative activities. We share knowledge as global goals ambassadors in the Heller Community and Brandeis as a whole. We have organized events such as the International Women’s Day 2019 and movie screenings in the past. We hope new students can join us this fall.

Net Impact – Heller Chapter

Contact Elizabeth Nguyen,, and Francis Hwang,


Net Impact is an international network of professional and student networks focused on using business for environmental sustainability and social impact through topics such as corporate social responsibility and social entrepreneurship. It serves as one of the largest MBA organizations in the world. Net Impact Heller partners with the IBS and Boston Net Impact chapters to host a variety of professional and networking events such as the Impact Summit in Boston and the Triple Bottom Line speaker series.

Also, please note that funding approval is separate from event approval. The date, time and location of your event still needs to be approved by the Heller Events Team by submitting details using the Events Request Form, include all the events, if you are planning more than one (as part of a series), even if they are not happening at the Heller School.

What are the policies for reserving Heller space for meetings?

  • Same Day Room Requests: You may write your name into a room schedule located outside each room.
  • Working Groups: Please designate one representative from your group to reserve space. Each group is allowed to reserve space for meetings one module at a time (approx. 7 weeks). If any meetings are canceled you must inform
  • Student Study Groups: For students seeking to request classrooms for group study sessions, Teaching Assistant sessions, etc., use the Classroom Reservation Request Form. We ask that room reservation requests be submitted at minimum 24 hours prior. If you find you need a room urgently, please complete the form and follow up with an email to Janie Marsan (
    The request form can be found at the Heller School website in Current Students under Student Life.
  • Teaching Assistant Session(s): Please use the Classroom Reservation Request Form to request a room for TA sessions. We ask that room reservation requests be submitted at minimum 24 hours prior. If you find you need a room urgently, please complete the form and follow up with an email to Janie Marsan (
    The request form can be found at the Heller School website in Current Students under Student Life.

Food Policy

If you don't use Conference and Events (x6-4300) but will serve food or use additional chairs and tables, set up and cleanup of all food and furniture will be your responsibility. You must clean up after your event, especially in the evening and on the weekend. If you are having a major event on the weekend, you must hire a custodian before and after in order to assure clean rooms for the event and then for classes Monday morning. Any excessive trash (stacks of empty pizza boxes or food trays) should be taken out to the large trash bins at the side entrance/loading dock of the Heller-Brown building (near student mailboxes). It is not acceptable to leave trash overflowing trash bins.

Liquor Policy

You are strictly forbidden to serve your own alcohol to event attendees. CES attends hearings on the fourth Tuesday of the month to apply for one day liquor permits, so contact CES accordingly if you want to serve alcohol at an event in the Heller buildings.

Building Policies

  • Balloons and candles are not permitted for events taking place in the Heller School.
  • If you hang items or use any sort of tape, all tape must be removed immediately following your event.
  • Flyers – There are five places in Heller where you can post flyers on bulletin boards.  The bulletin boards are located: at the student mailboxes, to the left and right of the library entrance, the large board near Zinner Forum, the space between G6 and G5, and the large board outside room 147. You may also put one flyer on small common tables in the Zinner Forum or small seating areas. Flyers are not allowed on painted or textured walls, windows, or doors. They are allowed on the entrance of the building on the day of your event only if they are used to direct attendees. You are required to dispose of flyers after your event is over.
  • Posters – You are allowed to display your poster two weeks prior to your event at the entrance of the Heller Brown and Schneider Buildings.