I spent the entire summer of 2016 giving campus tours. There were days when I gave over four hours of tours in the Baltimore heat. If you don’t know, the summer weather here averages a million degrees with a million percent humidity. This is all to say: I got really blunt by the end. Here are a few thoughts inspired by heat exhaustion that I shared on tours.
“A political moment in Charleston is a fight in a Walmart.”
Pretty accurate. There was a fist fight between a few women in my hometown Walmart the year I left for college. Everyone involved was caught, the Charleston Police Department sent out a notice on their Facebook page, no damages, no biggie. For some reason that this political science major can’t figure out, this event caused Charleston citizens to rage about neighborhood crime like no other.
The contrast I was making between the chance to study Baltimore Real Politics instead of Charleston ~politics~ got lost with giggles about my ridiculous hometown.
“You don’t even have to be smart to be safe here! I left my backpack in an open foyer with cash, apartment keys, office keys, my student ID, my driver’s license, my credit cards, prescription meds, and my phone. When I came back for it an hour later, security had sent out an alert for me and was about to call my mom to tell her that I’d been kidnapped or something since no one would purposefully leave a bag like that unattended.”
My point telling this mess of a story was: security has your back even if you actively do dumb things! even you were raised in the rural midwest! security is so great, right?!
But from that point on, I could tell that everyone on the tour just thought i was a moron. So it goes.
In response to a question about my least favorite thing about JHU: “The administration took away covered grades for the class of 2021. As someone who did not come from a fancy private school, I found this choice poor…”
I’ll spare you from the rest of the speech. It was apparently pretty passionate and persuasive, though. Later in the tour, we passed JHU President Ron Daniels outside of his office building. I pointed President Daniels out to the group and exchanged pleasantries with him. As I made to continue the tour, a man from my group shouts, “Hey, so what’s the deal with taking away covered grades??”
My rant about covered grades made a guy heckle the President of Johns Hopkins.
Finally, here’s a bit of an email I got from a student on one of my tours.
Once I’m inevitably fired from tour guiding for some future departure from script, at least I’ll be able to say that I was honest?