Category: Miscellaneous

Hopkins Hosting Society

Hopkins Hosting Society is comprised of a group of undergraduate volunteers who host prospective and admitted students during a typical evening on the Homewood Campus. Such students are able to experience Johns Hopkins college life first-hand by eating in the dining halls, sleeping in the dormitories, participating in on-campus programming, attending a lecture, and much more!

This year’s program will prove to be the most ambitious yet; a multitude of exciting changes will serve to expand the program both in the quantity of pre-frosh hosted and in the breadth of programming offered. The entire campus will be engaged in welcoming prospective students to Homewood (or, as some call it: Blue Jay Nation).

Overnight opportunities are offered both during the fall and spring. In the fall, prospective students (high school seniors) are invited to attend one of the following program dates:

Thursday October 14th
Thursday October 21st
Thursday October 28th
Thursday November 4th

Registration for the Fall 2010 Overnight Programs is now open! If you’re interested, please follow the link provided here to reserve your spot. Please note: space is limited and all registrations will be given priority on a first-come first-serve basis.

The Spring 2011 Overnight Programs are incorporated as part of the larger Admitted Student Program offered after regular decision notifications have been made to newly admitted students.

Should you have any questions regarding any of these programs, please contact the program coordinator, Jonathon DiTroia, at

Kinetic Sculpture Race

Johns Hopkins had its first ever entry in the Baltimore Kinetic Sculpture Race.
The team name was Twitter Jay and the Recyclists. The Baltimore Sun describes “Twitter Jay is part art installation, part sports team mascot and part community-building enterprise.”

Find out more: Baltimore Sun, JHU Gazette.

Watch a video about Twitter Jay below.

A: TV Quiz Show Where JHU Student Dominates

Q: What is Jeopardy?

Smenke Last Tuesday … Scott Menke, a Hopkins senior, dominated in the first round of this year’s Jeopardy College Championship.

Scott is from  Flemington, N.J. and is majoring in applied mathematics and minoring in the Whiting School’s W.P. Carey Program in Entrepreneurship and Management. He traveled to Los Angeles last month to tape at least one episode of the show. With his win last Tuesday, Scott returns for the semi-finals on Monday, May 11th. We are all rooting that he wins again and makes it to the finals.

In his blog for the show Scott talks about waiting in the green room:Jeopardy

“After all 15 contestants were thoroughly schooled on everything that goes on behind the scenes, we were brought back into the green room, which would become our temporary holding cell. Some of us would only have to endure it for a few minutes, while others would be locked in for hours on end. We started up Mean Girls on the DVD player, and waited for the announcement as to who would be playing first…”

Click here for the recent JHU Press Release supporting Scott.

A New President

I1m39g29 Johns Hopkins University has a new president! After an extensive search the committee has selected Ronald J Daniels. We will sadly say good-bye to President Brody this coming March but we have much to look forward to in President-elect Daniels.

He has a strong faith in higher education and understands the modern-day research institution:

“The research-intensive university is simply the most important social institution that exists today. By virtue of our ideas and our values, we are uniquely positioned to contribute to social progress and scientific understanding.  This is why I have devoted my life to higher education leadership and why I am so passionate about the cause of higher education.”

His words on undergraduate education are particularly inspiring for students on the Homewood campus:

“Great universities must offer an undergraduate experience that challenges, inspires, and educates students, and allows them to develop and hone their powers of analysis, reason, and judgment. Ideally, the opportunity to do advanced research under the supervision of faculty and graduate students would be part and parcel of this experience. Yet it is important to recognize that students yearn for more than intellectual growth; they look to our campuses for opportunities to experience moral growth, cultural understanding, and leadership development. Johns Hopkins is perfectly positioned to offer this experience, because of the breadth of its academic programs, its commitment to interdisciplinary research, and its deep and enduring ties to local, national, and international organizations.”

As Hopkins prepares to welcome a new president we must also part with the scooter riding, electrical engineering President Brody. Brody04 Martin O’Malley, governor of Maryland recently said of President Brody:

“Bill Brody has not only given Johns Hopkins a better future, he’s given Baltimore a better future. Very few people would have had the courage to see the new tomorrow that President Brody saw in the redevelopment of East Baltimore north of the hospital. All of us who love the city are very fortunate that at a critical time in Baltimore’s comeback, a man of such vision, integrity, and courage was leading Johns Hopkins.”

To find out more about President-elect Daniels check out:

Baltimore Sun Article
Washington Post Article

More to follow in the coming months.

Geniuses and Innovators

Geniuses and Innovators roam the hall of Hopkins. That person speed walking on the quad could very well be one. They live in the labs and behind office doors on the Hopkins’ campuses.  The are an elusive breed of thinker. They are often humble and hidden.  Until now.

Professors Peter Pronovost of the School of Medicine and Adam Riess of the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences were announced as two of the 25 winners of MacArthur Fellowships for 2008.

These grants are also known as “genius grants”. They provide funding with no strings attached for five years.  Nice to geniuses are well paid.

“Peter Pronovost is perhaps the foremost leader anywhere in research on patient safety and on the application of research findings in hospitals. He saves lives. He prevents unnecessary illness. And he helps fellow physicians around the world to do the same.

Adam Riess is an astrophysicist with (you’ll pardon the expression) stellar imagination and insight. His work to quantify the rate at which the universe is expanding led to shocking results and opened the door to significantly increased understanding of the cosmos and how it operates.” (from the JHU announcement about the awards) Find out more here.

A genius is not always an astrophysicist as demonstrated by alumnus Chimamanda Adichie who received an award for her writing. “Inspired by events in her native Nigeria, Adichie’s writing explores the intersection of the personal and the public by placing the intimate details of the lives of her characters within the larger social and political forces in contemporary Nigeria.” Find out more here.

GraciasWe are not just geniuses. We are also innovators (as proven by recent NIH grants to members of the Hopkins Community).

“The NIH grants, each covering $1.5 million in direct research costs over five years, were awarded to  Ronald Cohn, assistant professor of  pediatrics and  neurology,  McKusick- Nathans Institute of Genetic Medicine, in the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine; and  David Gracias, assistant professor of  chemical and biomolecular engineering in the university’s Whiting School of Engineering.” (from the Hopkins press release at

Are you a math whiz?

Or do you just have good math sense?

Demo2 Researchers from the Kreiger School of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences recently investigated how humans perceive numbers. Justin Halberda and Lisa Feigenson, both assistant professors of psychological and brain sciences, teamed with Michele Mazzocco, professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences in the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and researcher at the Kennedy Krieger Institute in attempting to find a connection between “good math sense” and academic success. The results of their research will be published in Nature.

Check out the New York Times’ article on their research and the JHU Press Release for even more information.

If you’re not sure whether or not you have good math sense (here’s a chance for the Writing Seminars majors to show up their Civil Engineering friends) play the New York Time’s game, which simulates the Johns Hopkins study.

Breaking News: President Brody to Retire

It was just announced today that on December 31, 2008 President William R. Brody will retire as 13th President of the Johns Hopkins University. A web site has been created (click here) that recognizes President Brody’s accomplishments and includes to video messages to Hopkins faculty, staff, students, alumni, and friends.

The Office of New and Information has issued the following news release:


William R. Brody, who has led The Johns Hopkins University to a deepened commitment to undergraduate education, diversity, the community, and research that advances human society, and who has directed a transformative renewal of its facilities, will retire as president on Dec. 31, he informed the board of trustees today.

Brody, 64, will have led the university for more than 12 years, the fifth-longest tenure among Johns Hopkins’ 13 presidents. His retirement will coincide with the conclusion of the $3.2 billion Johns Hopkins: Knowledge for the World campaign.

"I simply love this job," Brody said in a message to students, faculty, staff and alumni. "But leaving is inevitable. And I feel, moreover, that there comes a point when leaving is most natural, least disruptive and, in a way, most constructive. I feel we are about to reach such a point."

"Twelve years is a great run," he said, "and stepping down at the completion of my second campaign will allow the trustees to recruit a highly talented and able leader who will take Johns Hopkins to the next level."

Pamela P. Flaherty, chair of the board of trustees, said that Brody has the university in "excellent shape" and well-prepared for a presidential transition.

"Bill Brody has been an extremely successful leader at Johns Hopkins University," Flaherty said. "We’re fortunate to have had him for more than a dozen years."

Morris W. Offit, a trustee emeritus who was chairman of the board when Brody was elected president in 1996, agreed.

"When the search committee identified Bill as its candidate for the presidency, we obviously thought he would rank among the finest Johns Hopkins presidents," Offit said. "Our expectations were exceeded beyond our fondest dreams."

In his message today to the campus community, Brody expressed his gratitude to the university’s students, faculty and staff and to the trustees, alumni and friends of the university from the public and private sectors who support its work.

"When I started as president in 1996," he wrote, "Wendy and I made building a better sense of community among all of us at Johns Hopkins a top priority. I wanted to focus on the undergraduate experience. I wanted to make real and significant progress on ensuring that our campuses are diverse and inclusive. I wanted to reposition Johns Hopkins Medicine with a new governance structure so that it could continue to provide excellent, compassionate service to the sick in an era of managed care.

"I hope and believe that we have made great strides in all these areas," he wrote. "I hope and believe that, together, we have enhanced Johns Hopkins’ ability to teach and to mentor, to discover and to heal, and to share the gift of knowledge with the world."

During Brody’s presidency, the university has:
* established the Carey Business School, the School of Education and numerous interdisciplinary centers such as the Institute for NanoBioTechnology, the Center for Africana Studies, the Center for Global Health, the Office of Critical Event Preparedness and Response, the Information Security Institute, the Institute for Cell Engineering and the Malaria Research Institute.

* focused attention on the undergraduate experience both in and outside the classroom, by building new residential, art and recreational facilities; enhancing programs aimed at building a sense of campus community; inaugurating popular academic programs such as museum studies, theater, and entrepreneurship and management; strengthening security measures on campus and in adjacent neighborhoods; and creating new opportunities for undergraduates to take part in original research.

* created and largely built out a master plan for its Homewood campus in northern Baltimore that emphasized a serene outdoor environment; modern, interdisciplinary research facilities; and a welcoming new entrance and visitor center.

* expanded and modernized the research and education facilities of the health professions schools on the East Baltimore campus as part of a master plan that also has led to the construction, now under way, of two new clinical towers at The Johns Hopkins Hospital.

* revitalized the aging Mount Vernon campus of the Peabody Institute, creating one of the finest music conservatory facilities in the world.

* expanded its presence in locations from Rockville, Md., to Washington, D.C., to Nanjing, China.

* celebrated Nobel Prizes to two full-time faculty members and three graduates; also celebrated NCAA Division I men’s lacrosse championships in 2005 and 2007.

* made significant progress in the diversification of its student body, faculty and administration; committed to aggressive continued improvement in the recruitment of women and underrepresented minorities.

* completed a $1.52 billion campaign (original goal: $900 million) in 2000 and raised more than $3.1 billion to date in the Knowledge for the World campaign (original goal $2 billion; current goal $3.2 billion; closing date Dec. 31).

"The accomplishments of my time as president have truly been a team effort," Brody said, "involving scores of thousands of faculty, staff and students. And they could not have occurred without the generous support of alumni and friends and the wonderful partnerships Johns Hopkins has forged with the city of Baltimore, the state of Maryland, a number of foundations and many agencies of the federal government."

Under Brody’s direction, the university, often working in close partnership with its sister institution the Johns Hopkins Hospital and Health System, also has focused financial support, time and talent on solutions to problems in the neighborhoods surrounding its campuses and in the Baltimore region in general.

Johns Hopkins has contributed significantly to the New EastSide project, an urban revitalization effort initiated by a team of institutional, philanthropic and governmental partners and now under way north of the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions campus in East Baltimore. Brody established the Urban Health Institute to focus Johns Hopkins resources on community health problems in East Baltimore. To support the Baltimore public schools, he created the Baltimore Scholars Program, which now invests more than $2 million a year in tuition waivers for graduates of city schools. The university supports community and civic organizations, provides community health services and in numerous programs provides mentoring and other support for Baltimore youth.

"Bill Brody has not only given Johns Hopkins a better future, he’s given Baltimore a better future," said Martin O’Malley, governor of Maryland and former Baltimore mayor. "All of us who love the city are very fortunate that at a critical time in Baltimore’s comeback, a man of such vision, integrity, and courage was leading Johns Hopkins."

Brody became president of The Johns Hopkins University on Sept. 1, 1996, returning to Baltimore from the University of Minnesota, where he had served for two years as provost of the Academic Health Center. From 1987 to 1994, he had been the Martin Donner Professor and director of the Department of Radiology, professor of electrical and computer engineering, and professor of biomedical engineering at Johns Hopkins, and radiologist-in-chief of The Johns Hopkins Hospital.

Brody was professor of radiology and electrical engineering at Stanford University from 1977 to 1986. He has been a co-founder of three medical device companies, and was president and chief executive officer of Resonex Inc. from 1984 to 1987. He has more than 100 publications and two U.S. patents in the field of medical imaging and has made research contributions in medical acoustics, computed tomography, digital radiography and magnetic resonance imaging.

A native of Stockton, Calif., Brody received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in electrical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1965 and 1966. He earned his M.D. in 1970 and Ph.D. in electrical engineering in 1972, both from Stanford University.

Brody was the first Johns Hopkins president to live in Nichols House on the Homewood campus since 1971. He and his wife, Wendy, are often seen on campus, notably at basketball and lacrosse games and other student events. They also have made it a point each year to greet incoming freshmen and their parents during move-in days, variously using in-line skates, scooters and — one year — Segway Human Transporters to move quickly from one residence hall to another.

Wendy Brody has been a force for change within the university and in the Baltimore community. She has spearheaded the work of the Johns Hopkins Women’s Club to renew the library at the Barclay School and helped to spread the Experience Corps model in the public schools. She is deeply interested in the arts, serving on the advisory council of Homewood Museum and founding the Friends of the Peabody to better connect the Baltimore community with the talented student musicians of the Peabody Institute. She has also worked to strengthen the bonds between Johns Hopkins and the Walters Art Museum.

"She has been my true partner at Johns Hopkins," Brody said in his message to the campus community. "She has done so much in so many ways to better unite the university with those it serves. … I cannot say how grateful I am to her."

Scanning the Johns Hopkins Magazine (Feb. 2008)

One of the great ways to learn about a school is to peruse the pages of the school magazines. We at Hopkins Interactive looked through the recent edition of the Johns Hopkins Magazine (the university’s alumni magazine) and selected some articles for your reading pleasure.Lightbulb_2


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At Johns Hopkins a lot of things get invented. In the past 132 years a variety of inventions have come out of Johns Hopkins. This article celebrates twenty of the innovations for 2007.


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The universe is a complex place with many, as of yet unsolved, problems. This article looks at how physicists and astrophysicists view the world and how something called “dark energy” could help explain some of the mystery.



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Students interested in applying for top scholarships, like the Fulbright or Rhodes Scholarship, have to go through a rigorous application process. This article explains how Hopkins deans stage mock interviews to help students prepare for the real thing .


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In presidential campaigns media coverage matters but often times the coverage is not equal. Erica Falk, the associate program chair for the master’s degree in communication at the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, discusses how gender plays a role in how much media coverage presidential candidates get.


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Investigations looks at recent research done by Hopkins undergraduates. This  edition’s includes profiles of work done by students taking a fall seminar entitled “Material Culture: Pregnancy, Childbirth, and Family in Early America.”


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Sometimes Hopkins students don’t really know what they want to do after college. That’s perfectly okay and as one student from the class of 1994 learned it can be a lot of fun.

Scanning the Recent JHU Magazines

Happy Holidays everyone. One of the great ways to learn about Johns Hopkins is to read our various University magazines. There is the Johns Hopkins Magazine which is the university’s alumni magazine, the Arts and Sciences Magazine which is the publication for the Krieger School, and the Johns Hopkins Engineering Magazine which is the publication for the Whiting School. We at the Blue Jay Buffet have perused all three of the recent editions of these magazines and selected some of the top, most interesting stories to share with you. Enjoy!


ONE THING IN COMMON – The Johns Hopkins Magazine

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A collection of student profiles featuring 12 new students who began their Hopkins experience this fall. The article is a distinct look at how diverse the student population is between all the divisions that make up Johns Hopkins University. From first year freshmen students to masters students, nursing and medical students, the collection of profiles represents a University with many different parts but certain qualities in common too.

JOBS BECKON NEW GRADUATES – The Johns Hopkins Magazine

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The “Wholly Hopkins” section of the Johns Hopkins Magazine which features short notes on stories around all of the Hopkins universe, discusses how more and more Hopkins undergraduates are looking the job market post-graduation rather than graduate school. The story details some new trends that were discovered by the most recent Johns Hopkins Career Center survey.

DR. FOOTBALL – The Johns Hopkins Magazine

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A fantastic feature on Coach Jim Margraff, the most Margraffvictorious coach in Johns Hopkins football history. A 1982 Hopkins graduate, Coach Margraff returned in 1990 to become head coach of Hopkins Division III football squad. An excerpt:

When Margraff returned to Homewood in 1990 to take over as head coach, Hopkins had never won a Centennial Conference football title, had never qualified for the NCAA Division III championship tournament, had not had a winning season in five years, and had won only two of its last 20 games. In the 17 years Margraff has been in charge, the Jays have recorded 12 winning seasons, four Centennial Conference titles, and three post-season East Coast Athletic Conference championships. In 2005, Hopkins earned its first trip to the NCAA tournament. And Margraff has not won by recruiting one-dimensional athletes for whom classes are merely a distraction from the gridiron. In its history, Hopkins football has produced 10 academic all-Americans; Margraff has coached eight of them, as well as five of the program’s seven recipients of NCAA Postgraduate Scholarships. In 1997, the university recognized his contributions as a player by inducting him into the Johns Hopkins Athletics Hall of Fame.

DECISIONS, DECISIONS, DECISIONS – The Johns Hopkins Engineering Magazine

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An behind-the-scences feature of the final few days in the Admissions Office this past spring before the release of Regular Decision notifications. Follow along as the Admissions staff makes final decisions, discusses in committee the last remaining applications, and the process behind releasing 14,000+ decisions. The process is known as March Madness, and after reading this article you will know why.

OBJECTS OF ADMIRATION – The Johns Hopkins Engineering MagazineCreasytivo

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Engineers love their objects. This article features 8 members of the Whiting School of Engineering, including students, faculty members, and even the Dean, sharing their thoughts on their favorite engineered object. Click here for even more contributions to the best engineered objects discussion.

DEFINING WORKS – Arts and Sciences Magazine

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A special collection of stories that feature the great works of four of Hopkins greatest faculty members: Lou Galambos, Alan Shapiro, Frances Ferguson, and John Irwin. “They each recount the intellectual, emotional, and professional challenges they confronted while completing the project that’s been most important to their careers. What were the defining personal moments behind their defining academic works?”

GILMAN HALL – THE RENOVATION BEGINS – Arts and Sciences Magazine

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One of the most exciting pieces of news to come out of the Kriegers school in the last decade has been the decision to renovate Gilman Hall into a truly state-of-the-art Humanities Center. This news items discuss the initial stages of the project which commenced this fall semester. It also provides and array of links for those who want even more details on this fantastic project (see the right column titled Related Links).


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The strengthening of the Arts at Hopkins continues with the awarding of the first round of Arts Innovation Grants this past spring. Two of the winners were Kriegers School groups who will use the $2000 arts grants to create a new general-interest arts journal and expanded dance class offerings for the full Homewood campus.

STUDENT RESEARCH FROM THE FIELD – Arts and Sciences Magazine

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This special feature discusses the projects being worked on by a number of current Woodrow Wilson Research fellows. As explained in the article, “The Woodrow Wilson Undergraduate Research Fellowship Program awards grants of up to $10,000 to incoming freshmen and up to $7,500 to rising sophomores for original, independent research projects in the humanities, natural sciences, and social sciences. Students use grants to pay for equipment, travel, or other research expenses.”

Introduction to the Buffet

Welcome to the newest blog in the Hopkins Interactive collection. The Blue_jayBlue  Jay Buffet will not be a blog about food at Hopkins, but will rather be a collection of entries that reflect many aspects of Hopkins life. We will approach this cornucopia of stories with an “everything-but-the-kitchen-sink” style, meaning that everything and anything goes.

In the coming weeks and months we will feature a variety of entries:

  • Each month we will publish a “This Month at Hopkins” entry that looks back at all the news-worthy stories from the previous months.
  • Each month we will also publish our “Engineering News Briefs” which will provide a glimpse into our Whiting School of Engineering.
  • Periodically we will feature guest entries from recent ALUMNI, who will want to fill you in on what life is like after Hopkins.
  • We also plan to have current PARENTS of Hopkins students writing guest entries on how it is to be a JHU Parent and advice for future parents.
  • You’ll also find remnants of our old JHU Fun Blog as we re-introduce our Hopkins Interactive Mascot Series.Dave1

In addition to all that, we are leaving the door open for even more unique, unusual, and entertaining content. So check back weekly, as we provide you with a 360 degree view of all that makes up the Johns Hopkins University experience.