Published by the Students of Johns Hopkins since 1896
March 2, 2021


The opinions presented below are solely the views of the author and do not represent the views of The News-Letter. If you are a member of the Hopkins community looking to submit a piece or a letter to the editor, please email

College admissions should not be race-blind

As May 1 approaches, high school seniors across the country are making the exciting and difficult decision of where they will spend the next four years of their life. Three years ago, when I was in that same position, I heard some troubling comments about how Asians are held to higher standards than other students.

Trump’s actions will not be able to help Syria

“Mission Accomplished!” No major politicians have dared to utter these words since George W. Bush famously stood by them (literally) atop an aircraft carrier 15 years ago. In this now infamous speech, Bush proclaimed the end of major combat in Iraq, right before the vast majority of casualties in the Iraq Wars, in a campaign that can hardly be called a ‘success.’ 

The publishing industry needs to stop prioritizing male writers

Recently, my friends and I went to a reading at which five finalists for a literary award presented some of their work. Three of these finalists read snippets of fiction, and the other two read selections of their poetry. Four of these finalists were women, with one man standing among them.

Don’t dismiss passions outside of your major

In my four years as a Writing Seminars major, I was often asked if I would double with something else. The answer was always no — I reveled in my specific coursework, thought the Writing Sems requirements were broad enough and thought that nothing else was so compelling that I should devote more time to it than a few classes. 

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Sophia Bush defended Hilarie Burton against EyeCon, but she shouldn’t have had to do so.

Actors shouldn’t be forced to share #MeToo experiences

Last fall, in the early days of the #MeToo movement, One Tree Hill creator Mark Schwahn was accused of sexual harassment in an open letter signed by 18 women in the cast and crew of the show. Among the accusers were stars Hilarie Burton and Sophia Bush, who played best friends Peyton Sawyer and Brooke Davis, respectively. 


Our SGA needs real influence over University decisions

But when the University makes a decision — whether it is about covered grades, fossil fuel divestment or private police — it does not have to act on SGA input, let alone consult the SGA at all. The New Horizons ticket acknowledges this problem and their solution is to generate grassroots support among students and faculty. However, we urge them and the rest of us to think broader. If we want students to have a voice in what our University does, the current system must change.

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Hopkins is one of the only hospitals in the country to still allow people to smoke on campus.

Hopkins Hospital needs to ban smoking on its premises

Last year, as I was wheeling a patient into the Hopkins Hospital, she started coughing. Normally, that wouldn’t be in an issue. We were in a hospital after all. Having gotten into an accident, she needed a lot of help from the social service group that I work with to find her a new source of income. The coughing issue spiraled quickly, becoming unexpected and uncontrollable, so I quickly rushed her inside. After drinking some water and feeling more stable, she finally spoke up.

Let’s examine the character of writers we study

Before #MeToo, I did not take a very close look at the personal lives of artists whose work I admired. I was naive enough to think that in the 21st century, I could not possibly have been conditioned to respect sexual offenders. 

We need a student center

For decades, Hopkins students have yearned for a student center: a central space for the collective pursuit of our social and mental wellbeing. Hopkins is an outlier. A student center exists at nearly every other college and university campus in the United States (including the 33 peer institutions to which Hopkins compares itself), but not here. More schools have a student center than an armed private police force.

What the University can learn from the private police bill debacle

Last Friday, Maryland state legislators announced that they are withdrawing their support for the bill that would have allowed the University to create a private police force. This announcement came as a victory for the many student and community organizers who have been working tirelessly over the past couple of weeks to defeat the bill. 

Provide students with disabilities the resources they need

The student group Advocates for Disability Awareness (ADA) released a series of demands on Monday calling for the University to address a series of deficiencies in the way Hopkins currently accommodates students with disabilities. These demands, which are addressed to senior administrators, including President Ronald J. Daniels, were made in the wake of the dismissal of Dr. Brent Mosser. Mosser was the former director of academic support and disability services and served as an important advocate for students with disabilities on campus.

Grading on a curve promotes toxic competition

It doesn’t matter if you successfully learned 95 percent of the material if 50 percent of your class successfully learned 96 percent. Rather than earning the A you deserve on a test, a bell curve could downgrade you to a C. In a scenario like this, what incentive is there to cooperate? 

Working as an RA should not reduce one’s financial aid package

Residential Advisors (RAs) are some of the first people we meet upon arriving at Hopkins. They shape our first year experience and ease us through the transition from high school to college. The responsibilities of an RA go beyond just the hours they spend on duty. The job is vital to the emotional wellbeing of students and the position can often be emotionally, physically and psychologically taxing on RAs themselves.

The March in Washington, D.C. on March 24 was one of the largest gatherings in the country.

Parkland students are using their privilege for change

Do those speakers accurately represent decades of people of color who have spoken out against gun violence and been silenced? No. But was it clear to me that these kids made a real effort to include a diverse range of voices and center those who often don’t get the chance to speak.

We cannot take local journalism for granted

At a time when local publications across the nation are facing increasing financial pressures, it’s more important than ever to pay attention to these local outlets. We are in a city that is grappling with how it is telling its own story. 

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