Published by the Students of Johns Hopkins since 1896
September 19, 2020

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.



Mobilizing privilege during a pandemic

It is time to stop pretending that finances do not matter. That America is a land of equal opportunity. That anywhere in the world is a land of equal opportunity. We have heard that “with great power comes great responsibility,” but never that with money comes the greatest responsibility of all. 


Finding time to be spontaneous while abroad

I love to fill out my iCal with blocks of things to do. It gives me the peace of mind that I have set a time for that particular task. Unfortunately, as Introduction to Psychology taught me, and as I have personally experienced, humans overestimate their productivity. Often I end up shifting my plans around because life likes to throw curve balls. For example, last week I took a spontaneous day trip to Paris to visit my friend.


Ask Arden: Accepting the uncertainty of the future

It’s tough to figure out a plan for your life: It involves risk, decisiveness and commitment. Hopefully the following points give you a good starting place in helping you figure out what you want to do with your life, but know that the process is highly subjective. Only you can know what you want to do with the rest of your life, and no one can give you those answers. 


COURTESY OF CLAIRE BEAVER
With Bieber’s resurgence, Beaver wishes we could leave him in the past.

Justin Bieber just will not let his fame go in peace

Ayo, I’m back with more of my opinions! This week I’m tackling the one and only Canadian dreamboat turned criminal turned whatever he is now, Justin Drew Bieber. I must preface this by telling you one of my more embarrassing traits: I was a Justin Bieber Fan Girl. I feel like there should be a support group for all of us now college aged people who had to ride that crazy rollercoaster with our boy.


COURTESY OF LAUREN PAULET
Paulet and Geada reused decorations to save on both waste and money.

Working to make a more sustainable sorority secret week

The University’s panhellenic sororities have an annual tradition of pairing their newest members, “littles,” with a mentor, known as a “big.” Once paired, the big meticulously plans a “secret week” of surprises for the little, leading up to their exciting reveal at the end of the week. 



COURTESY OF ZUBIA HASAN
Hasan remembers her after-school trips to markets with her amma.

Remembering my childhood in Pakistan while I study in America

Evening meant clutching Amma’s hand and crossing Kachi Gali to reach the neighbors’ houses. After visiting Mehwish, it was Akbar ki amma’s (Akbar’s mom), as she was referred to, turn. We would stop by her house and the dusty living room, filled with placards she had embroidered herself. (“Welcome,” and, “Have a good day!” they proclaimed.) Akbar ki amma was old, and I never knew her name; she was always just Akbar ki amma, and her house seemed very lonely and empty. Amma reminded me that is why we must always visit her.


COURTESY OF SAM FARRAR
Attending IvyG gave Farrar a broader perspective on the FLI experience.

Experiencing an inter-collegiate FLI community

Over this past leap-weekend, I attended the sixth annual IvyG at Cornell University, a conference for first-generation and low-income (FLI) students that attend so-called “elite” or selective universities and colleges. While this was the second or even third time that some of the other students I went with were attending, this was my first time. Naturally, I was really excited (and equally stressed) for a three-day respite from Hopkins, but the conference ended up being more of a mixed bag — I was really appreciative of some aspects of our scheduling, but felt others fell short and failed to create an inclusive environment.


COURTESY OF DIVA PAREKH AND SAM FARRAR
During a tough time, Parekh finds importance in some of the small things.

Finding meaning in some little blue gloves

About 15 years ago, in December 2005, my dad first came to America. I had just turned eight, and it was the first time in my life that one of my parents had been gone for an extended period of time like that. He was going there to start the process of becoming a U.S. permanent resident, which is the only reason I even can apply to be a citizen today.



FILE PHOTO
Mongia is savoring her time in college before she has to learn how to cook.

Clinging to my youth (and my dining plan)

Frankly speaking, one of this University’s most unrealistic expectations of upperclassmen students is that they should cook for themselves. Most of my peers, far braver than I, have indeed begun attempting to hone this life skill. Some of these peers include my roommates, whose pots and pans piling up in the sink are a reminder of this learning process (If you’re reading this, it’s NOT too late to clean up!).


COURTESY OF JASON HELFER
Helfer’s experience as a non-traditional student presents unique challenges.

Juggling fatherhood, my career and graduate school

My days begin early. At 5:15 a.m. my alarm wakes me. This is the only way I can spend a few precious minutes with my wife in the morning before she begins work at her preschool. Our routine is the 45 minutes of coffee and news we have together before the marathon of each day begins.


COURTESY OF SOPHIA LOLA
Two injuries last semester taught Lola the lesson of listening to her body.

On forging a deeper relationship with my body (and Union Memorial)

Over the past few months, I’ve had so many X-rays and other imaging done that I’m a little disappointed the radiation hasn’t yet given me superpowers. They all happened during the 20 or so ER trips, doctor’s visits and physical therapy appointments that I had as a result of two injuries last semester.


Learning the importance of financial adulting

One of the trickier parts about growing up is figuring out what to do with money. In high school I worked at an ice cream shop and got paid 10 dollars an hour. To me, money directly correlated with time. When I would buy something, I didn’t ask myself, “Is this cup of coffee worth five dollars?” but I would ask myself, “Is this cup of coffee worth 30 minutes of scooping ice cream?”


BOHEMIAN BALTIMORE CC  BY/SA 4.0
This weekend, Perlman was able to explore Baltimore through a retreat.

Taking a day off for an adventure in Baltimore

If your student organization has a retreat, go. Many are scheduled for all day, and at Hopkins, an all-day activity during the weekend immediately induces a heart attack. But you should go. Spending a whole day with people helps you bond with them.


PUBLIC DOMAIN
After four years at Hopkins, Qian feels disillusioned with the field of AI.

Reflecting on the moral qualms surrounding AI

I came to Hopkins in 2016. That year, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) were making waves around the world. It seemed like yesterday when we saw machines like IBM’s Watson triumph over humans. Self-driving cars, AI-augmented medicine and smart cities were among the many applications promised to save millions and bring prosperity to many more.



Finding the beauty in moments of grief

The sun has not been out in days, the rain seems to never stop and the dull ache in your heart is a constant, ceaseless pounding. Letting go is one of the hardest things a human being has to experience, but letting go is probably also the most universally human experience. It is not possible to navigate life without loss or grief — so one day or another we all have to let go of something or someone.


EDA INCEKARA/PHOTOGRAPHY EDITOR 
According to Beaver, Sandler plays the same dumb husband in every movie.

Reflecting on the perpetual cringe of Adam Sandler

In the wake of the Oscars and the incredible wins for Parasite and Reneé Zellweger’s amazing performance in Judy, I decided to take this week to think of some of the worst acting I have seen. A name that comes to mind — and I will stand by this — is Adam Sandler. 


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