Published by the Students of Johns Hopkins since 1896
April 3, 2020 | °F in Baltimore

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 BONNIE JIN
Jin says that our hard work matters more than the prestige of our schools.

The ways we perpetuate academic elitism

I. I sat as the youngest between seven cousins and countless relatives, eating our own version of a belated Thanksgiving. Between mouthfuls of dumplings and rice cakes, I saw my aunt’s eyes crinkling into a smile.



Why Urdu is still so important to my identity

I cannot understand Urdu literature. I cannot read Urdu poems. And I feel like a part of me has been taken from me. Urdu is the language of love, the language of the sufis, the language of the poets and now the language that has been snatched from me because of my colonized history. 


Talking money can help limited-income students

As I begin the second year of this column, I think it is fair to say that I really have no problem discussing my limited-income status. It has always been strange to me that people discuss finances in hushed tones. It is seen as rude to ask about anything related to income or economic standing. But why? 


Remembering my grandmother’s food

My grandma couldn’t cook. This may come as a shock to anyone who’s watched me prepare, order or eat a meal, since by most accounts I resemble a jaded nonna in those moments, but it’s true. Her kids and grandkids with especially generous palates may object (I can already hear the 30+ member family group chat clamoring in protest), but in my humble opinion, Patricia Guerriero was a decidedly lousy cook.


NEHA SANGANA / PHOTOGRAPHY EDITOR
After leaving The News-Letter, Parekh reflects on the pride she feels for what she helped build.

Why I spent four years working on The News-Letter and what it feels like to leave

Here at Hopkins, you can always find people ready to talk about the journey they took to find the clubs that are important to them. They’ll tell you how they walked around the Student Involvement Fair (SIF); became completely overwhelmed by the sheer amount of clubs trying to recruit them; signed up for 50 different club mailing lists; followed up with five; and then finally found the two or three groups that were the most important to them.


PUBLIC DOMAIN
For Ramchandani, saying “no” is one way to stand up for yourself.

Learning to set boundaries and put my needs first

With the beginning of classes comes the inevitable internal struggle between focusing on academics, being social and getting enough sleep. We all go through the same thing; classwork piles up, and somehow every single party is held on the same night every single lab is due, while every friend you’ve ever made crawls out of the woodwork and wants to catch up over coffee. 


COURTESY OF ALEX WALINSKAS
Walinskas reflects on how D.C. compares to Baltimore, her longtime home.

Why I missed Baltimore during a summer in D.C.

Baltimore, I have a confession: I snuck away and spent my summer in Washington D.C. Our nation’s capital may be a quick MARC train ride away, but the city and its culture lies in stark contrast to our home here in Charm City. 


Exploring and trying new things as a senior

Everybody tells you when you’re a freshman that college is a time to explore, try new things and discover who you really are. Everybody tells you to talk to everyone you meet during O-Week, explore every major at Hopkins and sign up for the thousands of clubs that are at the Student Involvement Fair.


COURTESY OF GABI SWISTARA
In this political climate, Swistara has no room for bigotry in her life.

Why I can’t separate the political from the personal

To borrow a phrase coined during a “simpler” time, that the personal is political, I dare to claim the opposite is true today: the political is personal. In an era of sad nihilism, when bigotry and discrimination are boiled into our everyday lexicon and we have become self-obsessed with our national concerns — of which there is no shortage — to me, the political has truly become just that. Personal. 



Financial aid creates toxic situations for single parent families

Every year, a good portion of this campus fills out their financial aid forms. Nobody has ever described this process as fun. For many of us our future at Hopkins is determined by the amount of aid we get, and that’s stressful. You have to be on top of all the different release dates, due dates, processing times and so on, and that’s stressful. Many times the financial aid office can be hard to reach as they take their time to respond to emails or forget to return calls all together, and that’s stressful. 



COURTESY OF EDA INCEKARA
Beaver asks if Lover can really be a good album with lyrics like these.

Lover got good reviews, but it is definitely not good

As the new school year is ushered in, it is accompanied by a slew of new music. And the breakup of Miley and Liam (RIP for real this time). But I digress. We recently were blessed with Lana del Rey’s Norman Fucking Rockwell and Miley Cyrus’ new single, “Slide Away.” Both are dreamy, soft summer bops.


COURTESY OF ELIZABETH IM
Im reflects on the importance of representation of minorities in the media.

Looking at the importance of representation in media

On August 4, I woke up at 7:30 a.m., even though it was a Sunday. Still not quite awake, I took the MARC train down to D.C with two friends. Our destination was Eaton D.C., the most artsy hotel I’ve seen: The entrance was decked with vintage vinyl, and it even had its own radio studio. That was where the 2019 Asian American Literature Festival was held.



Your place is here too: Adjusting to Hopkins as a limited income student

No matter where you go, or who you are, the beginning of a college career is always filled with anxiety. Am I smart enough to be here? Will people like me here? Did I make the right choice? These are ideas going through everyone’s heads, and for the most part, we are all aware of how they can shape our acclimation to Hopkins. 


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