Published by the Students of Johns Hopkins since 1896
December 4, 2022

Voices

Hopkins is a diverse university where an incredible mix of cultures, academic interests and personalities coexist and thrive. Here is the section where you can publish your unique thoughts, ideas and perspectives on life at Hopkins and beyond.



COURTESY OF ANNI FAN
Fan discusses how her experiences at Hopkins led her to decide to move on from swim.

Why I decided to quit swim

I spent most of my freshman and sophomore years weighed down by a constant sense of tiredness in my bones. But that was to be expected since I woke up at 5:30 a.m. three times a week to jump into a cold pool. 


COURTESY OF MADELYN KYE
As she prepares to study abroad, Kye discusses her excitement to explore a new culture and her fears in losing time with her friends.

Preparing to study abroad

I am preparing to study abroad next semester. So far, this has mainly consisted of curating a new wardrobe on Pinterest, applying for a visa and — on a sadder note — grappling with the knowledge that this would be my last semester with many of my best friends at Hopkins.


COURTESY OF SHIHUA CHEN
Looking back on her experiences applying to medical school, Chen considers how her culture plays a role in her professional life.

How my culture affects my professional life

When I interviewed at a medical school earlier this year, I felt the interview had gone ok. In preparation I practiced my answers with multiple mock interviewers, watched countless videos from past applicants and researched extensively on the school.


COURTESY OF GABRIEL LESSER
As he adjusts to a new Spanish-speaking environment, Lesser reflects on his family’s different languages and how they have influenced him.

What my family has taught me about language

My mom was younger than I am now when she moved from Brazil to the United States. She met my dad, who is from New York, while they were both studying abroad at Tel Aviv University. At the age of 19, she left her home in Rio de Janeiro and transferred to college in New York to be with my dad.


COURTESY OF ALIZA LI
Li considers the events in her life that led her to major in Writing Seminars at Hopkins.

Why I chose writing

In some sense, I write as a form of embodiment, a way for me to make real the things I cannot express outwardly. Writing is no longer something I want but something I need. I need it, just as much as I need water or shoes. 




Dear extroverts, introverts are normal too

One of the most obvious things that we notice in our everyday lives is that people are distinctly different. There are 7 billion people sharing the earth. But how many are considered normal? When are people considered abnormal? 


COURTESY OF ROWAN LIU
Liu reflects on her time at Hopkins, her volunteering experiences with a refugee family and what it means to move forward into a new and unfamiliar space.

Onward and upwards: Helping a refugee family move in

Before the pandemic, I was a freshman still trying to figure out what I wanted to do with my time at Hopkins. I was preoccupied with my grades, my resume and being the best I could be.  By the start of spring of 2020, I began to volunteer with the Baltimore chapter of the International Refugee Committee (IRC). I thought it was an excellent activity to get involved in, since I wanted to work with international organizations or the State Department in the future. 


COURTESY OF MOLLY GREEN
Green recounts her experiences as a summer camp counselor and the joy of mentoring young campers.

The camp counselor life

June 6 was the day my summer truly began. At 6:30 I woke up, put on my bathing suit and sweats and drove to my favorite place: work. My coworkers and I greeted each other in the parking lot, blinking away the mist of the early morning as we started our trek down the hill to the beach. 


COURTESY OF MADELYN KYE
Kye reflects on the ups and downs of her tumultuous relationship with running.

My relationship with running

I have an on-again, off-again relationship with running. The cycle began when I joined the track and field team in seventh grade. I already played a fall sport and was looking for a way to stay active in the spring. That year I tried out sprinting, hurdles and triple jump; I found myself extremely motivated by the prospect of progress in these various events.


COURTESY OF JACKIE RITTENHOUSE
Rittenhouse describes all the memories, rituals and feelings that come with Sunday.

A Sunday kind of love

It’s Sunday, a day made for living slowly, for taking care of yourself and your space and for recharging all of the little aspects of yourself that are expended every other day of the week. It’s Sunday, and I choose to rest.



COURTESY OF MICHELLE LIMPE
In anticipation of The News-Letter’s return to print, Limpe and Gahagen discuss the paper’s production history.

Back in black and white

The return to “normal” has been gradual for all, The News-Letter included. The pandemic forced us to move our print publication, a tradition on campus for over 120 years, to a fully online, daily production with our last print edition published on March 12, 2020.



COURTESY OF ALIZA LI
Li discusses her mother’s influence on her decision to pursue writing.

My mother’s hand in my life

This past summer, I watched a matinee with my mom every Monday at our local AMC Theater. We picked our movies almost arbitrarily. One week an indie film about a slow-burn romance set in foggy London. The next a major action blockbuster (think: Yakuza and locomotives) upon which my mother — who usually prefers drama over action — awarded the glowing review of not bad.


COURTESY OF SUDHA YADAV
Feeling the effects of burnout, Yadav adjusts her mindset on breaks and takes life one day at a time.

Breaking the habit of not taking a break

Looking back at 21-year-old Sudha, I always used to be in so much of a rush. With everything I did — whether it was academics, research or even hobbies — I wanted to be the best. But now that I’m in graduate school, with almost the exact same schedule every day, I have begun to feel like my progress is plateauing. 


COURTESY OF JAMIE KIM
Recounting her decision to take a break from school, Kim emphasizes the importance of healthy, restful living.

Letter to myself: surviving as a returning student

The struggle is real. I never thought I’d find myself in a situation where I would be “a returning student.” But here I am, proud of the leap of faith I took to come back but also feeling wildly out of place. No one would be able to tell what kind of student I am, and frankly no one should care, but my own intrusive thoughts tell me that I stick out like a sore thumb. 


COURTESY OF MICHELLE LIMPE
Limpe emphasizes the importance of trying new things as she reminisces on her summer in California.

A summer spent chasing sunsets and changing mindsets

At the beginning of my summer, this is what I had attributed my opportunity to live and intern in California to — luck. My experiences over the past summer were never something that I had considered for my personal plan nor were they a possibility that I thought could be on my radar. But when I received the call from my recruiter during spring break, I knew it was something that I had to take. 


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