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Last Friday, Blue Jays walked out of their morning classes to a 60-degree day, ready to relax and recharge in the sunshine. Alas, the weather was short-lived: Dreams of lounging on the Beach all weekend quickly came to an end as another round of snow brought us back to reality.
Students have long criticized the University’s Office of Institutional Equity (OIE). Tasked with fostering an environment free from harassment and discrimination, OIE should be a useful and effective resource for the Hopkins community. Instead, it is underfunded, understaffed and unproductive.
February is Black History Month — as students, we should take this time to celebrate the achievements and heritage of Black people at Hopkins and beyond. As residents of Baltimore, we can support local Black-owned businesses and learn about Black history and culture in the city.
Hopkins hasn’t experienced a “normal” semester since fall 2019, and we return this spring with an all-too-familiar sense of uncertainty. Once again, we spent a break sorting through seemingly contradictory messaging from administrators which often brought more confusion than peace of mind. For example, although masking and testing requirements have been increased, Hodson 110 and Gilman 50 are packed with students returning for spring classes.
We have come to the end of another semester at Hopkins. Reflecting on the past three months, we ask the question: Has the University eased our transition to a “new normal?”
We have a problem with trash on campus.
Since the onset of the pandemic, the University has continued to prioritize its own financial health over the needs of the people it exists to support.
On Monday, the University informed students of a reported intentional drugging incident at a Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity party over the weekend.
If you take the University’s word for it, Hopkins is a beacon of inclusivity. Alongside stunning views of campus, pictures meant to exemplify diversity feature prominently in the University’s promotional materials. This image is too rosy. The environment surrounding disability on campus exemplifies this inconsistency.
Hopkins often feels distant from the city it calls home. Community engagement efforts are largely concentrated in the areas surrounding the Homewood and East Baltimore campuses. Firmly entrenched in the Hopkins Bubble, we rarely stray far from the University.
Last week, the family of Henrietta Lacks filed a lawsuit against biotech company Thermo Fisher Scientific. Seventy years ago, Lacks sought treatment for cervical cancer at Hopkins Hospital, where doctors harvested her cells without her knowledge. Following her death, her immortal cells, known as the HeLa cell line, would revolutionize modern medicine. Yet the Lacks family was kept in the dark about the mass production and commercialization of her cells for over two decades; to this day, her family has not received monetary compensation.
As the winter season approaches and people increasingly opt to stay indoors, flu season has made its presence known on campus. With friends, fellow students, and even professors falling ill, it seems that everyone has been feeling under the weather. In a normal year, this might not be a cause for particular alarm. In a new normal year, however, this is concerning.
This semester feels like a never-ending marathon. With midterm season upon us, students must constantly juggle exams, papers, applications and extracurriculars. To add to this stress, there are no formal breaks this semester in the 11 weeks between Labor Day and Thanksgiving.
Changes to vaccine guidelines is just one of the recent announcements increasing students’ anxieties due to the lack of communication from the University, leaving many still wanting more transparency from the Hopkins administration.
Once again, Hopkins is tied for ninth place in the U.S. News and World Report’s “Best National Universities” category. While we are grateful to attend a University that affords us so many incredible resources, one very basic resource doesn’t live up to this standard: transportation.
After a year and a half of logging onto Zoom meetings, most of us had our first in-person class last week. With students lounging on the Beach, studying at Brody and indulging in the grilled cheese at the FFC, it’s clear: we have achieved some sense of pre-Pandemic normalcy.
It truly was another unprecedented summer. As vaccines became more readily available and COVID-19 cases in Baltimore declined this past June, Hopkins relaxed its indoor mask mandate and weekly testing policies. Many students felt optimistic that the fall would represent as close a return to normal as possible.
Under the pseudonym Zhang, a master’s student at Hopkins recounted the mishandling of her sexual assault case by the Office of Institutional Equity (OIE) to The News-Letter. Unfortunately, OIE has failed yet another complainant in its Title IX procedures.
Today, we celebrate the 51st annual Earth Day. Since President Joe Biden’s inauguration, the U.S. has made some progress in the fight against climate change. The country rejoined the Paris Climate Agreement in one of Biden’s first executive orders. With the new administration’s recently unveiled $2 trillion infrastructure plan promoting cleaner energy sources and racial equity, there is reason to be optimistic.
During Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin’s trial regarding the murder of George Floyd, the city was brought to the forefront of national news once again. Last Sunday, Daunte Wright, a 20-year-old Black man, was shot and killed by a white police officer.