Johns Hopkins University is an exciting place to pursue an engineering degree. With 14 programs available in 9 different departments, there are infinitely many learning and research opportunities available for undergraduates. The Whiting School of Engineering has incredible resources; undergraduates can even work one-on-one with full-time faculty their freshman year—a rare opportunity. To assist with helping you determine Why Hopkins Engineering may be right for you, here are a number of characteristics that set the Whiting School apart from its peers.
The Unique Freshmen Experience
As a freshman in Whiting, you’ll be assigned an academic advisor, who is also a faculty member of your degree of interest. Since Hopkins is a medium-sized school (less than 5,000 undergraduates and just about 1/3 are engineering students), one of the things you can look forward to is getting to know your advisor on a first-name basis and meet with them at least once a semester. You can also ask them for advice and they can use their connections to set you up with research opportunities or internships. As mentioned before, many students begin research their freshmen year. The choice is yours, all you have to do is find a lab that strikes your interest and apply.
Many engineering departments include freshmen only seminars and courses, like Chemical Engineering Today, a seminar series of chemical engineers from all fields in the real world from medicine to law. If you are undecided on which field of engineering to major in, you can take What is Engineering?, a fun, lab-based course that showcases a lab on each discipline of engineering.
One of the true strengths of Johns Hopkins University and the Whiting School is the wealth of opportunities for undergraduates to conduct research. Research integrates the principles you learn in your courses and provides the opportunity to apply you skills to real world problems. Topics range from new techniques to revive cardiac muscle or stem cell scaffold construction to mechanical devices to assist eye surgeons or novel methods of chemical synthesis.
The engineering departments here at Johns Hopkins are interdisciplinary and often closely interlink with Hopkins’ other institutions: the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, the Bloomberg School of Public Health and the School of Medicine. It is not uncommon for engineering students to be conducting research at the Medical Campus. Great examples of cooperation among departments are the Institute for NanoBioTechnology, located in the newly renovated New Engineering Building on the Homewood Campus and the Center for NanoMedicine located in Smith Hall at the Medical Campus.
At Hopkins, many engineering students groups such as Engineers Without Borders bring these innovations, as well as other engineered necessities all over the world. Some of the most recent expeditions include trips to South Africa or Guatemala.
Liberal Arts and Engineering
One of the other great attributes of studying engineering at Hopkins is the connections one has with the liberal arts programs; it is possible to take classes and minor in lots of different subjects ranging from French to African Studies or Economics. As an engineering student, you will have to fulfill distribution requirements within the humanities, so some engineers focus on earning a minor or double major within a liberal arts discipline. Hopkins is not an institute of technology but rather an engineering and liberal arts school sharing one campus and one interdisciplinary experience. Typical engineers are like Cate W. a junior double-majoring in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and Mathematics or Kate T. a sophomore ChemBe major with a minor in French Cultural Studies, or Nick G. a sophomore Computer Science and Economics double major, or even Ian H., a freshman who has declared a double major in Materials Science & Engineering as well as Chemistry.
Although Hopkins engineers have the opportunity to explore their academic interests, it is the small and devoted departments that create the amazing atmosphere. Hopkins still today is a school where the departments are intimate, where copious amounts of research are available, and more importantly, where students can pursue engineering but also have the feel of a small liberal arts university. As a student of The Whiting School, you’ll have the chance to get to know everyone in your major, connect deeply with faculty, get opportunities to work on the world’s most cutting-edge research, and still be able to pursue interests outside of engineering.
The Whiting School prepares students for a career in virtually whatever they desire. Students take classes in humanities, social sciences, technical writing, math, and science along with classes in a specific engineering discipline. The analytical skills developed here allow Hopkins engineers to go on to be lawyers, doctors, pharmacists, professors, research scientists, and professional engineers, or even businessmen. Most majors within Whiting allow a five-year masters program, where you can pursue a Master’s Degree in your fifth year, and tuition is half price!
If you want to know more about Engineering at Hopkins, feel free to ask us questions on the Hopkins Forums:
- Ask JHU_Cate: a junior studying ChemBe and Math from Minnesota
- Ask JHU_Greco: a junior studying ChemBe from South Korea
- Ask JHU_KateT: a ChemBe sophomore from Connecticut
- Ask JHU_Nick: a sophomore from Connecticut studying Computer Science and Economics
- Ask JHU_Sydney: a BME sophomore from Wisconsin
- Ask JHU_Ian: a Materials Science & Engineering freshman from Milan, Italy
- Ask JHU_Tanmay: a 2009 BME graduate originally from Houston, TX and currently in medical school at Duke.
Additionally, these resources can assist further in your exploration of the opportunities available to students in the Whiting School of Engineering:
But truly the best way to experience the Whiting School of Engineering is to visit campus this April. If you visit during SOHOP there will be ample chances to explore the whole campus, engineering classes, and meet with engineering students. However, if you are visit on a non-SOHOP day you should consider participating in an Engineering Tour or Lunch with a Student. Check out our Other April Visit Options page for details, dates, and RSVP form.
Come back tomorrow to learn about another side of the unique academics at Johns Hopkins University … the Humanities.