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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Editorial: School spirit high, but why isn’t university promoting its name more?

Published: September 21, 2012
Section: Editorials

This week we’ve seen an influx in school spirit, thanks primarily to The Today Show with Kathie Lee Griffin and Hoda Kotb, and in part to Rachel Nelson ’13 and Reed Zuckerman ’13. The seniors took charge of the campaign to bring the show to Brandeis in a national collegiate contest, helping propel the school into the top six.

Under the leadership of both Nelson and Zuckerman, the student community has quickly rallied to promote Brandeis and the values for which it stands. We’re happy to see the campus this alive.

The two students and staff deserve all the credit we can give them for their work this week, and their drive is a reminder to the university’s communications team of the steps they can and should be taking to bolster the Brandeis University brand.

With the departure of Senior Vice President for Communications Andrew Gully this past summer, the search committee is currently looking for someone who is enthusiastic about new opportunities to showcase the university. Skills in publicity campaigning and the new media on which it thrives should be first on the committee’s checklist. Senior Vice President for Students and Enrollment Andrew Flagel has brought a strong skill set in this field. The university should look for a communications vice president who brings similar spirit, enthusiasm and skills.

Brandeis faculty are known for being specialists in their fields, with 97 percent holding the highest degree in their field. The faculty guide boasts of award-winning authors, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists, MacArthur Fellows and members of the national academies. The administration has an opportunity to put these professors in the spotlight, on national television with a Brandeis logo in the studio.

Many of our professors and deans are already quoted in major news sources. In respect to the news sources that aren’t contacting our professors, our provost, our deans and our president, why isn’t the university taking more steps to reach out and offer them as a resource? It’s good for public discourse, and it’s good for Brandeis’ name.