After final exams and graduation in May, students head home to take a break from the school year. Some will vacation and visit friends, while others will work. Some will volunteer, while others will study abroad. For a few short weeks, campus is quiet. The quads are bare, the dining halls are empty, and only a handful of guests come to the visitor center for information sessions and tours. Then, with the start of June, things really pick up. While we have many high school students on campus taking classes through our various Summer Programs or the Center for Talented Youth (CTY), participating in Engineering Innovation, or attending one of our athletic camps, we also have many current undergraduates that return for a variety of different reasons. Whether it is to take a class, work, participate in an internship, or just hang around, there are many things to do both at Johns Hopkins and in Baltimore for the summer.
Since I am in charge of student workers in the office and also oversee the tour guides, I get to chat with a lot of students about all of the great opportunities available to them. Here are some students who are really taking advantage of their summers:
Jessie – Class of 2013 – studying Behavioral Biology from Phoenix, AZ
Currently, Jessie is tackling the second summer session of Organic Chemistry. Since she heard the course was a pretty difficult one, she decided to take it in now so she could really focus on the topic. While it can be a bit intense because it is so fast paced, she is happy that she can get it out of the way and not have to worry about it during the school year. On top of taking Orgo, she has also been working in admissions, giving tours, and conducting interviews for our office. When I asked Jessie what she liked about being in Baltimore during the summer, she said:
“One of my favorite things about being in Baltimore is the food! The restaurant scene here is awesome, and it’s so fun trying new restaurants and learning about great deals on great food. My friends and I recently discovered RA Sushi happy hour and we’re able to get really good sushi for pretty cheap (The Las Vegas Roll is probably the best sushi ever!). Plus going downtown is fun because you’re able to get off campus and explore more places around Baltimore like the Inner Harbor, Harbor East, and Fell’s Point. Restaurant Week is coming up soon and I’m excited about being able to try even more great restaurants.”
Jessie has also managed to make it to Philadelphia for the 4th of July with her sister and to Washington, DC, where she has not only obtained her visa for her study abroad program next semester in Madrid, but also visited Georgetown Cupcake which is featured in the show “DC Cupcakes”!
Corey – Class of 2012 – studying Political Science from Cedar Grove, NJ
While Corey did not take classes like Jessie this summer, he has certainly taken advantage of several job opportunities. Similar to Jessie, he has been an office intern, giving tours and interviews and assisting with daily office tasks. In addition, at the beginning of this week, he started a four-week internship in Washington, DC, working for Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama. Since he can take the train from Baltimore to DC, he will be living in Baltimore and commuting each day to his new job. Through this internship, he is hoping to make some great connections that will help him after graduation as he looks for a job and eventually heads to law school (he hopes to go to school in Alabama where some of his family is from!) In addition to working, Corey is also a soccer player at Hopkins. To keep in shape, he says,:
“As an athlete with a season in the fall, most of my summer is dedicated to training hard for the season. I run and lift six days a week with some of my fellow teammates who are also living in Baltimore for the summer. Our main goal is to pass our fitness test on the first night of preseason, which happens to take place at midnight. In order to pass, I have to complete a 300 yard shuttle (10 yards back…20 back…30 back…40 back…50 back) in 58 seconds with a two minute rest, ten times. We try to play some pickup games as much as possible on Homewood Field when our schedules allow it. The start of preseason is coming up soon (August 19th), but we all are doing our best to get better every day so we can take part in the NCAA tournament again.”
Richard – Class of 2013 – studying Public Health from Accra, Ghana
As one of our international students, Richard decided to not to go home this summer, and has stayed on campus to work and learn more about the city. As a tour guide, he walks around families every morning at 11am (if you visit at this time, Richard may be your guide!) Also on campus, he has been working with WJHU radio to paint, move furniture, and fix up the studio for the fall semester. During the school year, he actually has his own show! To learn more about the city, Richard has gone to concerts with friends and joined the Baltimore Beach Volleyball League in the Inner Harbor. He plays 2 vs. 2 on Thursdays with some of his friends who play on his club team here at Hopkins. For the 4th of July, he headed out on the Chesapeake Bay to see the fireworks. He said:
“The highlight of my summer by a long shot was watching my first 4th of July fireworks show in front of the Chesapeake. The largest fireworks show up until that point was one at Spring Fair and although that one was great, it wasn’t even in the same league as the 30-minute extravaganza I witnessed on the Bay.”
As you can see, summers at Johns Hopkins can be full of new experiences. Students really do make the most of their time on campus and in the city!