Aramark making baby steps

Just came across a pretty cool article about Aramark’s decision to pay a little extra for tomatoes grown in Florida in order to increase profits for the harvesters. In an attempt at non-partisanship, I’ll post the link and let you decide if it changes the way you look at our dining services provider.

“Food giant Aramark agrees to pay increase for tomato farmworkers”

And in an attempt at honesty, I’ll highlight a few dismal facts discussed in the article that reveal the agreement to be meager attempt at fair labor practices.

Continue reading “Aramark making baby steps”

Brandeis move to new e-mail service now official

Over the past few days, we’ve all been getting e-mails from Lindsay Barton regarding the move to Gmail. Beginning yesterday at 5:30 pm, students’ e-mails “migrated” from our former e-mail service Bmail to the new Gmail. See Barton’s e-mails after the jump.

Continue reading “Brandeis move to new e-mail service now official”


Running out of points? Don’t feel like spending a meal? Come enjoy a free organic and local dinner!

Students for Environmental Action is hosting an entirely free, made-from-scratch organic and local meal in Sherman Function Hall (Upper Sherman) at 6:00 pm.

There will also be a panel discussion titled “Food, the Environment and Social Justice.”

Come for the discussion, for the free food and for a really awesome time.

Paul Simon playing at commencement!

Here’s the e-mail:

From: “Jehuda Reinharz” <>
To: “undergrads graduating in May” <>
Sent: Wednesday, April 28, 2010 10:33:55 AM GMT -05:00 US/Canada Eastern
Subject: Paul Simon

Dear Seniors,

I have great news to share with you.  Thanks to your enthusiastic
advocacy, Honorary Degree Recipient Paul Simon has agreed to perform
a song at your commencement.  The decision came after we reached out
to Mr. Simon’s management and conveyed the excitement of your
“Facebook” campaign requesting that he sing.  This will certainly
contribute to making commencement a memorable moment for you and your

Additionally, Mr. Simon has agreed to speak at the School of Creative
Arts commencement at one o’clock in the Spingold Theater Center.  All
members of the Brandeis community are welcome to attend.


Jehuda Reinharz

Did anyone else see this e-mail from Jean Eddy?

Yesterday afternoon Brandeis students received a strange e-mail from Senior Vice President for Students and Enrollment Jean Eddy about the return of Vice President for Enrollment Keenyn MacFarlane. It began,

“It is my pleasure to inform you, that effective April 5, 2010, Keenyn MacFarlane returned to the Brandeis campus to serve as Vice President for Enrollment.”

Why are they just informing us now, almost a month later?

“Nearly three years ago Keenyn left Brandeis to serve as the Deputy Chief Financial Officer for the Department of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in Washington, D.C….”

There just seems something wrong with that. Please tell me I am not the only one who sees something wrong with that.

And then she just goes on with miscellaneous biographical information and an explanation of the position of Vice President for Enrollment. Such a weird e-mail.

Continue reading “Did anyone else see this e-mail from Jean Eddy?”

Good food

Cuisine is an entangled element of human social relations. Humans are separate from other members of the animal kingdom in our ability to craft cuisine. Sharing food is a beautiful thing, and we’d like to invite you to share your most passionate food experience with our Brandeis community.

Send us your favorite recipe. Tell us what about this meal makes it so important to you.

We’re picking our favorites and compiling an environmentally sustainable version of each in a cookbook.

Submit your recipe:

To get involved, contact

Why I support Sahar for President of the Student Union

I’ve made a decision this election to become informed. I want to vote for the candidate whose platform aligns with what I care about and whose vision is complementary to what I want for our university. So, I’ve read all the platforms and flyers and Facebook groups and made my decision. I’m voting for Sahar Massachi for Student Union President.

Reading through all of the other platforms, there was very little diversity–a lot of promises of greater transparency, reduction of overcrowding, increases in communication between the administration and students, and more of a focus on improving student life. Obviously these are things we all want for Brandeis, but if all the candidates promise these things, how will I choose between them? As I said before, I wanted to make my decision based on my connection to a candidates platform. Choosing between the other candidates seemed to mean choosing for the wrong reasons, and in that case I would rather just not vote at all.

Luckily, Sahar Massachi is running for President. He’s a different kind of candidate, and he has a different kind of platform. Sahar’s platform encompasses the things that all the other candidates are promising, as well as incentives that reflect a recognition of important student-run initiatives on campus. His motives are comprehensive; he’s going to pursue the goals of the Brandeis macrocosm, but he also wants to realize the vision of Brandeis imagined by all the little microcosms that make our school so diverse and exciting. He wants to bring more arts culture, improve ‘DeisBikes, empower those furthering our social justice mission, and reform Dining Services. Sahar wants to pursue the dreams the student body has for Brandeis–not only the popular ones, but the personal ones too. He’s going to effect change in an extremely positive, monumental way.

I know Sahar will be this type of president because he is already this type of person. I’ve gotten to know him both through my work on Innermost Parts and on his campaign, and overwhelmingly what I see is his passion for pursuing and realizing the goals of anyone willing to accept his help and support. To illustrate this I’m going to explain how Sahar and I met:

It was only my first week on campus, and I was feeling really lost. He introduced himself to me and handed me his business card, and when he walked away I figured we’d probably never talk again. Instead, he contacted me shortly after and started introducing me to people he knew with interests similar to mine. He made it his business to get me as involved as possible with the pieces of Brandeis that I admired and wanted to be a part of. I was just a brand-new first year and Sahar had no reason to help me, but he did anyway.

That’s the kind of president I know Sahar is going to be.

So I’m voting for Sahar and I encourage anyone to vote for him who wants to see real change at Brandeis. If you know the incredible potential that our university holds, then you need to know that he does too and that a vote for Sahar is a vote for this vision.

Why do you support Sahar? Tell us here or on facebook.

There is no such thing as a vegan

There is no such thing as a vegan, or at least there shouldn’t be.

There is nothing distinctively inaccessible about vegan food. Everyone is able to eat vegan food, so shouldn’t it be more approachable than a hamburger or a glass of milk?

The labeling of products as vegan is functional because it saves time spent scanning ingredient labels. A product with a vegan label is declaring the lack of animal products in its constitution so that a consumer does not need to sort through each ingredient.

But now we have people labeling themselves as “vegans.” With the existence of vegan people, vegan food has an assumed destination so that it functionally transcends its ingredients (or lack thereof) to become an entirely new category of sustenance. It’s sustenance that’s become unreachable to the majority of people.

Vegan exclusivity has created aversion in the meat- and dairy-eating population toward vegan food. This is kind of ridiculous, considering vegan food is theoretically the most all-inclusive, and it’s seriously delicious.

In an effort to prove this, Students for Environmental Action’s Food Policy group will be giving away free vegan food on the following dates (locations TBA):

April 12

April 20

April 22

Come by, enjoy our food, and help break down useless stereotypes.

First Semester at Brandeis

As a first-year in the class of 2013, I’m experiencing something unique.  Because this first-year class is so large, we don’t fit the stereotypes normally associated with the “typical” Brandeis student. Still, I feel like I had a pretty typical first semester here.

In this past semester I realized exciting things about this campus. Brandeis professors want to help us and students want to get involved. There is an energy in our student population that I haven’t experience before, one that reveals itself in opinionated theological discussions over dinner in Usdan or the in myriad number of student-organized events going on all over campus at any given point in time. And it’s not just the students—this spirit permeates Brandeis faculty and staff in a very similar way.

After only one semester here I’ve come to a few conclusions.  First and most immediately recognizable is Brandeis is thankfully a lot more diverse (and a lot less “Jewish”) than the widely published statistics make it sound. Second, (despite my first realization) taking Hebrew at Brandeis is the equivalent of taking a math class at MIT. Third, this place somehow attracts an extremely unique, astonishingly dynamic bunch of people who come together and form the earnest, intellectual, activist-minded fabric of this university.

Greening the Ivory Tower: Brandeis Garden groundbreaking!

Some of you may have heard about the Greening the Ivory Tower class at Brandeis, taught by Environmental Studies professor Laura Goldin. For those of you who haven’t, its a community-involved learning class which works on environmental projects dealing with the University and surrounding community. This year, the class has teamed up with other students, staff, professors, and community members to start a co-op community garden on campus. This is a very exciting step in the right direction for Brandeis dining! The project’s aims are to connect the University with our source of food and to unite our community under a common goal.

The Brandeis Garden project aims to create a vegetable garden that may work as a source of food for the University. The project will hopefully be supported during the summer by students in the Justice Brandeis Semester, with help from Healthy Waltham. It will be up to our community, however, to sustain the garden and make sure it thrives, so let’s all get involved!

The first opportunity to volunteer will be at the groundbreaking event, held October 18 from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm in the field across from the Chapels. Local bands are invited to perform, and there will be food and tee shirts for sale! Throughout the day, there will be numerous activities (and numerous opportunities to get your hands dirty!) so be sure to stop by.

Aramark at Brandeis

From its founding in 1948 until August 31, 1998, all Brandeis dining was in-house.

Beginning July 1, 1991, Brandeis began outsourcing to Aramark.

In a letter to Brandeis from Jehuda Reinharz, dated May, 1998:
“I am pleased to report that Executive Vice President Peter French created an open process of review involving students, faculty and staff, which resulted in the selection of Aramark to operate dining services beginning July 1, 1998.”

Hi Innermost Parts readers!

My name is Liat Zabludovsky and I’m a first-year student here at Brandeis. I am familiar with Innermost Parts due mostly to Sahar and partly to my own personal interest with the University, so I am extremely excited to begin contributing to this blog.

I plan to cover dining-related news, and would like to be as inclusive as possible, so if you have any information regarding dining/food at Brandeis, please don’t hesitate to send me an e-mail ( I am familiar with the controversies that stirred around here in recent years involving dining, and I think it’s definitely about time we all started paying attention.

Look out for a time line of Brandeis dining over the last 61 years, which I will be posting in the near future!