Sometimes, especially on the anniversary of a tragedy, it is nice to be reminded of the good that still exists in the world.
For me, I was reminded of this good not once, but twice over the course of finals week, a time when people tend to be stressed and a little on edge. During this difficult time for everyone, two complete strangers went out of their way to help me out, showing a great amount of care for their fellow students.
The first experience was two days ago, when I was sitting with a few friends at a table on the group study level of the library. I was working on my own, and they were studying for their exam (an upper level neuroscience class, so no way did I know what was going on). A girl I had never met had joined them, as well. Somehow, the studying quality at the table diminished and we had all forgotten that we were here to study, but a little break was much needed and welcome. I mentioned that I was studying for my Cognition final, and the girl I didn’t know mentioned that she had taken that class a while back. She asked me how it was going, to which I replied that it was going well but could be better. Without hesitation, she offered to send me her study guide that she had made when she took the class. Obviously, this would be a huge help for me, but I hesitated a bit to say yes when she mentioned that she would have to go home, find it, and scan all 10 pages in to email it to me. I insisted that it isn’t worth all that trouble, but despite my instance, she went ahead and sent it anyway. Even though it was only a few minutes, the fact that someone would go so out of their way to help someone else they had met only minutes before really shows something about people, and I think Hopkins students especially.
The second happened around 6 AM this morning, before the sun even arose. I knew I had a lot of studying to do, and that most of it would be in a group setting. Unfortunately, all the rooms you can reserve were already reserved for the day, so the only ones available were the first-come first serve ones. As I paced back and forth, peeking into the windows of study rooms hoping to find a vacant one, the door to a room I had passed several times opened. The person in the room, another complete stranger, asked if I was looking for a study room. “Yes”, I replied, but none were available. He explained to me that he had his chemistry final at 9 AM, and after that the room was all mine. Finding an open study room during finals period is like striking gold, and having a stranger give you theirs is like having a stranger give you gold, so gladly I accepted. Then came the really surprising part: he invited me in. Yes, obviously a very small gesture, and really no skin off his back other than that his one man private room became a two man room, but still one that caught me a bit off guard. Again, I accepted, and introduced myself as I sat down in the room to study. As with the first experience, I think it speaks volumes about the kindness of strangers and Hopkins students that someone who had just pulled an all nighter would offer to help out a stranger who looked confused looking for a place to study.
Now, true, these are both relatively minor things to have happen. More generous things occur every day, for sure. But in a highly stressful atmosphere, such as here during finals week, its always nice to know that your fellow students have your back and are willing to give a helping hand in anyway they can, even if they don’t know your name.
Thank you for reading,
Current track: Super Villain by Novi Novak
P.s. Have an interesting random act of kindness story? Whether it happened at JHU or elsewhere, please share it in the comments!