Johns Hopkins University 2023-24 Supplemental Essay Prompt Guide
Johns Hopkins University 2023-24 Application Essay Question Explanations
The Requirements: 1 essay of 300 words.
Supplemental Essay Type(s): Why
Tell us about an aspect of your identity (e.g. race, gender, sexuality, religion, community, etc.) or a life experience that has shaped you as an individual and how that influenced what you’d like to pursue in college at Hopkins.? (This can be a future goal or experience that is either academic, extracurricular, or social). 300 word limit.
JHU is purposefully leaving this question super open-ended, so you can write about any facet of your identity or background that has been most integral in shaping who you are. Admissions also wants to know how this aspect of your life experience has impacted what you want to gain from your time attending Hopkins. Start by thinking about your identity. You can write down some words that you would use to describe yourself or work backward by thinking about what you hope to pursue at Hopkins, then consider how that relates to your identity, background, or community.
Maybe you dream of becoming a surgeon, specializing in gender-affirming surgery, to combine your interest in science and medicine with your passion for helping members of the trans community. Perhaps you don’t know what you want to major in yet, but you hope to expand your horizons at JHU as a first-generation student, bringing what you learn back home to share with your family and community. As long as you put aside time to brainstorm freely and edit meticulously, we’re confident you’ll impress admissions with your response!
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Don’t Sweat the Supp Stuff: Advice for Crafting Your Supplemental Essay
It can feel daunting to choose what to write about in your college application essays. How do you sum up the complex, dynamic individual you are with such limited space?
The short answer: You can’t. But that’s OK.
The goal of your application is not to share every detail of your multifaceted life. Rather, the process allows you to share your story with the admissions committee about what makes you a strong match for the institution. Each piece of the application reveals something about your academic experiences and personal journey that shows us how you might contribute to the Hopkins community.
In some ways, the essays help tie together the rest of the application. They offer space for you to tell stories that represent the most important parts of your identity, which provide context for other components of the application.
Let’s zero in on the supplemental essay .
The supplemental essay portion of the application is specific to each school. Each institution has intentionally crafted a question (or multiple) to help determine whether a student might be a good match. We look for individuals who share Hopkins’ institutional values but will also bring unique experiences and perspectives to the community.
Below is the supplemental essay prompt for students applying for entry to Hopkins in the fall of 2024:
Tell us about an aspect of your identity (e.g., race, gender, sexuality, religion, community, etc.) or a life experience that has shaped you as an individual and how that influenced what you’d like to pursue in college at Hopkins. This can be a future goal or experience that is either academic, extracurricular, or social. (350-word limit) *
Picture your life in college. What does your community look like? Which aspects of your identity are most important for you to develop and nurture?
Now jot down some thoughts about experiences or parts of your identity that have had a significant effect on your life. Maybe it’s a hobby you love, a cultural tradition, or an instance when you discovered something new about yourself.
Once you have a list, think about how each of these will continue to play a role in your college life. Choose one to focus on and spend some time building it out.
Keep in mind this essay is not an exercise in “tell us everything you know about Hopkins.” While it’s important for the admissions committee to see you’ve done your research and understand what Hopkins has to offer, simply listing what you hope to pursue on campus is only half of the puzzle. Be sure to connect the dots by explaining why you wish to pursue those things, and how they’ll help you remain connected to and grow in your identity.
If you’re having trouble coming up with ideas or crafting your essay, reach out to your school counselor or an English teacher. They can help you brainstorm and ensure your piece is answering the prompt in a meaningful way.
* An important note about the essay: In this essay question, we are looking for how an aspect of your identity or background has contributed to your personal story—your character, values, perspectives, or skills—and how you think it may shape your approach to college as a scholar, leader, or community member.
Please note that the U.S. Supreme Court recently limited the consideration of race in college admissions decisions but specifically permitted consideration of “an applicant’s discussion of how race affected his or her life” so long as the student is “treated based on his or her experiences as an individual—not on the basis of race.” Therefore, any part of your background, including but not limited to your race, may be discussed in your response to this essay if you so choose, but will be considered by the university based solely on how it has affected your life and your experiences as an individual.
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How to Write the Johns Hopkins University Essay 2023-2024
Johns Hopkins University has just one supplemental essay, which all applicants are required to respond to. However, while other schools you’re applying to may have more supplements, you want to make sure you dedicate enough time to this essay, as Hopkins is one of the most competitive schools in the country, especially for students interested in medicine.
In this post, we’ll break down how to brainstorm for and actually write your Hopkins essay, as well as common mistakes you want to be sure to avoid.
Read these Johns Hopkins essay examples to inspire your writing.
Johns Hopkins Supplemental Essay Prompt
Tell us about an aspect of your identity (e.g. race, gender, sexuality, religion, community, etc.) or a life experience that has shaped you as an individual and how that influenced what you’d like to pursue in college at hopkins. (this can be a future goal or experience that is either academic, extracurricular, or social). (200-350 words).
Brainstorming Your Topic
This prompt is a version of the common Diversity Essay , with the added layer of explicitly connecting your identity to one of your goals for your time at Hopkins.
The first thing to note is that the way colleges factor race into their admissions processes will be different this year, after the Supreme Court struck down affirmative action in June.
Colleges can still consider race on an individual level, however, so if you would like to respond to this prompt by talking about how your racial background has impacted you, you are welcome to do so.
You are also welcome to write about a wide range of other aspects of your identity. As the prompt itself highlights, an individual is more than just their race, gender, sexuality, and other attributes that typically come to mind when you hear the word “diversity.” We are also shaped by the communities we’re in, the hobbies we enjoy, our interests, and so on. So, if you are having a hard time coming up with a topic for this prompt, shift to that line of thinking. Here are some examples of less traditional topics that could work:
- The people you see every day while walking your dog before school
- A group sea kayaking trip you did one summer
- Your passion for the color purple
The main requirement for your topic is that it has “shaped you as an individual,” per Hopkins’ request. There is one other thing you want to consider, though. Namely, can you connect this aspect of your identity to one of your goals for Hopkins?
Note that this connection doesn’t have to be direct. If your parents immigrated to the United States from Korea, you don’t have to write about wanting to do research on international migration with Professor Erin Chung. You can, of course, if you genuinely are interested in that line of research. But the connection you make can also be more nuanced.
For example, say that some of your relatives still in Korea don’t speak English, but you have developed a relationship with them through visits to museums and famous architectural sites, as you have a shared love of art. These experiences have shown you the unifying power of art, which is a phenomenon you’d like to explore more through Hopkins’ Renaissance Art History study abroad program in Florence.
Although this connection may not be one your reader was expecting, it works, as you explain it in a clear, easy-to-follow way. Plus, this essay is on the longer side for a supplement. You have 350 words at your disposal, so you have plenty of space to draw more sophisticated connections.
Tips for Writing Your Essay
If you have done your brainstorming well, writing the actual essay should be pretty straightforward: you want to describe the aspect of your identity you’re focusing on, and then connect it to the goal you’ve chosen to highlight. As just noted above, you have room to work with, so there’s no need to rush anything.
The only real rule here is that the connection you’re drawing is explained clearly. For a rather extreme example, if you just said “I have family in Korea, which makes me want to study abroad in Florence,” your reader would have no idea what you’re talking about. So, just make sure you’re able to articulate the link you see, so admissions officers understand how we got from A to B.
If you’re having a hard time with that, maybe take a step back from your essay, and come back the next day with a clear head. Sometimes, spending too much time on an essay will bog you down, and make it hard to see where to go next.
If you’re still having trouble the next day, you might want to return to the brainstorming stage, and either focus on a different aspect of your identity, or connect it to a different goal you have for college. There’s no shame in hitting rewind. Most students do at some point in their essay-writing process, as even topics that seem perfect at first can prove to be not quite right once you start trying to actually write about them.
Finally, like with any college essay, your writing will be stronger if you show, rather than tell. That means you want to rely on specific anecdotes and experiences to support your points, as that will make your essay more engaging. You can compare the two approaches below:
Telling: “I have quite a few family members still in Korea. Most of them live in Seoul, but some of them live in more remote areas.”
Showing: “I press my nose against the car window to get one last look at the glittering skyscrapers of Seoul, before my dad turns onto the winding, tree-lined road which leads to my uncle’s house.”
The information communicated is basically the same, but the showing approach paints us a picture, rather than reading us a list of facts like the telling approach. Because we are immersed in the student’s story, we feel much closer to them, and the whole point of college essays is to get admissions officers to understand who you are.
Mistakes to Avoid
The biggest potential pitfall here is answering the second half of the prompt (the “how that influenced what you’d like to pursue in college at Hopkins” part) in a way that isn’t specific enough to Hopkins. This subset of the prompt is essentially a mini “Why This College?” essay, which means you don’t want to just share a goal you have for college in general, but rather something you hope to achieve at Hopkins specifically.
The examples above show the level of specificity you want to get to. Contrast those examples with vague versions of the same goals: “At Hopkins, I hope to research migration from Asia,” or “At Hopkins, I hope to do a study abroad program that will allow me to pursue my interest in art.” These goals would be fine to share with a family member at Thanksgiving, but for Hopkins admissions officers, they’re too general, as these are things you could do in some form at plenty of other schools around the country.
By going a level deeper, to a particular professor who does the kind of research you’re interested in, and a particular program that will allow you to study art, you show Hopkins admissions officers that you’ve really done your homework on their school, which gives them confidence you’re ready to hit the ground running when you arrive on campus.
If you’re not sure about how to get to this level of specificity, hop onto Hopkins’ website, and skim their course offerings, faculty directory, study abroad programs, club pages, and so on. Odds are, you’ll see something there that aligns with the general goal you’ve identified for yourself, which will take you from the big picture to the narrower focus you want.
Where to Get Your Johns Hopkins Essay Edited
Do you want feedback on your Johns Hopkins essay? After rereading your essays countless times, it can be difficult to evaluate your writing objectively. That’s why we created our free Peer Essay Review tool , where you can get a free review of your essay from another student. You can also improve your own writing skills by reviewing other students’ essays.
If you want a college admissions expert to review your essay, advisors on CollegeVine have helped students refine their writing and submit successful applications to top schools. Find the right advisor for you to improve your chances of getting into your dream school!
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Johns Hopkins Supplemental Essays (2023-24) Prompts and Advice
September 3, 2023
In the most recent admissions cycle, Johns Hopkins University admitted approximately 6% of applicants into the Class of 2027. As a school that rejects thousands of applicants each year with 1500+ SATs and impeccable transcripts, those hoping for a positive result at JHU need to find additional ways to shine in the eyes of the admissions committee. The Johns Hopkins supplemental essay is one such opportunity.
(Want to learn more about How to Get Into Johns Hopkins University? Visit our blog entitled: How to Get Into Johns Hopkins for all of the most recent admissions data as well as tips for gaining acceptance.)
Given that 19 of every 20 RD applicants to Johns Hopkins University are ultimately unsuccessful, you need to do everything you can to stand out amidst a sea of uber-qualified teens from around the globe. Through its one mandatory essay prompt, Johns Hopkins University’s supplemental section still affords applicants an opportunity to highlight what makes them uniquely qualified for admission. Below is Johns Hopkins’s supplemental prompt for the 2023-24 admissions cycle. Additionally, you’ll find our tips on how to write a winning composition.
Johns Hopkins Supplemental Essay Prompt
Tell us about an aspect of your identity (e.g. race, gender, sexuality, religion, community, etc.) or a life experience that has shaped you as an individual and how that influenced what you’d like to pursue in college at Hopkins. (This can be a future goal or experience that is either academic, extracurricular, or social). (300 word limit)
JHU is inviting you to share more about your background/identity/community through the lens of how that will impact your experience at the university. Take note of the wide-open nature of this prompt. You are essentially invited to talk about any of the following topics:
- A perspective you hold
- An experience/challenge you had
- A community you belong to
- Your cultural background
- Your religious background
- Your family background
- Your sexual orientation or gender identity
Johns Hopkins Supplemental Essays (Continued)
Although this prompt’s open floor plan may feel daunting, a good tactic is to first consider what has already been communicated within your Common App personal statement and activities list. What important aspect(s) of yourself have not been shared (or sufficiently discussed)? The admissions officer reading your essay is hoping to connect with you through your written words, so—within your essay’s reflection—be open, humble, thoughtful, inquisitive, emotionally honest, mature, and/or insightful about what you learned and how you grew.
You’ll then need to discuss how your background/identity/experiences have influenced your academic, social, or extracurricular college goals. As such, think about what you learned and how it relates to one of the previously mentioned areas. For example, perhaps growing up in Northern California has made you passionate about post-wildfire ecosystem restoration, which you hope to pursue further through Johns Hopkins’ environmental science program. Or, perhaps your experience as a tutor has made you interested in The Tutorial Project , or the discrimination you watched your sibling face after revealing their gender identity has informed your desire to be part of initiatives like the Safe Zone Program .
To that end, be sure you address how you will take advantage of Johns Hopkins’s immense resources. The includes both inside and/or outside of the classroom. You can accomplish this by citing specific academic programs , professors , research opportunities , internship/externship programs , study abroad programs , student-run organizations , etc.
How important are the Johns Hopkins supplemental essays?
Johns Hopkins University considers six factors “very important” in evaluating a candidate. The essays are among them. In addition to the essays, Johns Hopkins gives the greatest consideration to the rigor of one’s school record, GPA, standardized test scores, recommendations, and character/personal qualities.
Want personalized assistance?
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Johns Hopkins Supplemental Essay Examples for
Looking at Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples can be very helpful for students getting ready to write their own college supplemental essays . Whether you are planning on applying to Hopkins- one of the most competitive schools in the United States, or a different highly ranked institution like Brown University , for example, you will benefit from looking at a variety of other essays.
If you want to get into a top college, being at the top of your class and having the right extracurricular activities on your high school resume is no longer enough. College admissions have gotten more competitive, and the admissions process has become more holistic. In other words, if you want to stand out, you need to submit compelling essays that show the admissions committee why you deserve a spot in their next class.
Reviewing different college essay examples can help you do that. So, without much further ado, let's look at these five Johns Hopkins supplementary essay examples.
>> Want us to help you get accepted? Schedule a free strategy call here . <<
Article Contents 10 min read
Prompt: Founded on a spirit of exploration and discovery, Johns Hopkins University encourages students to share their perspectives, develop their interests and pursue new experiences. Use this space to share something you’d like the admissions committee to know about you (your interests, your background, your identity, or your community) and how it has shaped what you want to get out of your college experience at Hopkins. (300-400 words)
Johns Hopkins supplemental essay example #1
I always have a book in my purse. Technically, I always have several because I carry a physical copy of a book and my Kindle, which gives me access to thousands of books. I don't remember when I started doing this, but I remember every single time that I found myself outside with nothing to do, and a book was there for me to escape into.
As you probably guess, I am an avid reader. I read an average of four novels every week, and then I talk about it with the community that I have built through my blog online. I enjoy telling others about the books I am reading, what I liked about them, the tools the writer used to drive their point home, and what they could have done better.
I first started reading when my family and I moved to the United States from Brazil. I spoke fluent Portuguese and very little English, so my ESL (English as a Second Language) teacher suggested I start reading English books to improve my vocabulary.
I will admit that the first few months were challenging. I was grateful for the kindle feature that allows you to check the definition of a word by double-clicking on it because I needed to look up so many words. I started setting challenges for myself. I would reward myself with a matcha latte if I could read three chapters without having to look up a single word, or I would get to watch telenovelas instead of reading if I managed to read a book within a certain amount of time.
Eventually, not only did my English improve significantly, but I started looking forward to reading. I had fallen in love with fictional worlds and the complex characters that inhabit those worlds. I have often found myself finding refuge in books, and I believe that there are so many others who could benefit from them.
My goal is to teach others about the wonderful world of literature and introduce others to books as my teacher did for me. Johns Hopkins not only offers an entire course on one of my favorite authors - Virginia Wolf-, but it also provides a rigorous English major that would allow me to strengthen my foundational understanding of formal literary criticism while also increasing my knowledge of modern literature.
I can't imagine exploring my love for literature anywhere else.
“Are clouds heavy? They don’t look heavy, but they have to be because you said that’s where rain comes from. Right?”
That is one of the many questions that I asked as a child. I have always had what my mother calls a curious spirit. I was that annoying child who preferred asking a million odd questions instead of playing games. So, to keep me busy, my mother would let me play games like Trivia and 20Q on her iPad. I developed a particular interest in 20Q when I realized that it would guess what I was thinking. I wanted to know why, and that is how my fascination with technology began.
Initially, I set out to understand how the game was guessing correctly, but my research led me to the fantastic world of Artificial Intelligence. I had more than twenty questions about how they work and what they can be used for, and as usual, I made sure to ask everyone around me. It was, therefore, not surprising when I signed up for a computer programming class as soon as I could in middle school. I was so excited to finally learn from a teacher who could answer some of my questions.
In middle school, I learned about artificial neural networks and how they use algorithms to recognize hidden patterns and correlations in raw data, how these networks can cluster and classify that data, and – over time – continuously learn and improve. I applied these same principles to my work as a student. Even though I was passionate about the topic and understood the principles behind computer programming, coding did not come naturally to me. I would stay behind after class to get some help from my teacher and other students. I would also spend my free periods practicing and watching tutorials.
“you’ll need to do some more living, first, and learn about things outside of literature.”
That’s what my grandmother told me when I first told her that I wanted to become a writer. At first, her words didn’t make much sense to me. I felt that to become a better writer; I have to study writers and the art of writing, nothing more. That said, my grandmother is one of the wisest people I know, and she is usually right, so I kept an open mind and thought about what she said often.
It first started making sense to me when I learned that Agatha Christie was a nurse and that Mark Twain was a steamboat pilot. It helped me realize that the best writers were not only capable of writing beautifully, but they also combined their knowledge of literature with outside information and personal experiences to create masterpieces that we are still learning from today. As an aspiring journalist and novelist, learning this made me wonder about my own interests outside of literature.
I have spent most of my free time in middle and high school focusing on improving my writing and research abilities through the school newspaper which I write for, the debate club that I am a part of as a researcher, and the book club that I meet with every other Saturday. My grandmother’s words and my recent discovery propelled me into action. I decided to “do some more living,” as my grandmother had called it. I joined the dance team, where I learned to push myself and confirmed that practice makes perfect. I also joined the social committee, which taught me how many people work behind the scenes of even the most minor events and how important the details are. I recently signed up for a cooking class as well, and I am confident that my experience with cooking will also teach me a valuable lesson.
Although I am on the path to becoming a journalist, I am excited to continue exploring different interests through the many programs Johns Hopkins offers. No other school would give me the option of attending writing seminars while also learning about various topics like earth & planetary sciences or robotics. I believe these experiences will only make me a better writer and allow me to contribute to my community more significantly. (392 words)
The night before my last debate, I slept for four hours. I know this was not the brightest idea, but I couldn't help it. I wanted to review my points again and ensure that I felt prepared. I remember laughing with my mother that night when she came in to remind me that I needed to sleep if I wanted to win. We laughed at the fact that once upon a time, I hated the idea of the debate club, and now, I was staying up late because I cared about the debate's outcome.
It is true that when my English teacher firsts suggested I join the debate club at school, I thought the idea of it seemed nonsensical. But after a few weeks of research and preparation and one debate tournament, I was hooked.
In order to debate, I often have to research complicated topics such as foreign diplomatic agendas, international relations, critical theory, and many others. I then have to synthesize that information into coherent debate evidence and translate knowledge into actual debate argumentation. It is the most challenging and rewarding experience that I have had, and it has helped me develop the ability to critically analyze information, make sense of it and express it creatively in written and oral form.
I have come to enjoy this aspect of debate prep, and I have come to love the competition as well. Over the past three years, my partner and I have won four debate tournaments, and I have won six regional speaker awards. This has not only boosted my confidence in my abilities, but has also increased my credibility in the debate league. We even got invited to a national conference where our public debate helped raise awareness about the impact of gentrification and what the local government can do about it.
Most importantly, debating has taught me the importance of being prepared and thorough. I have learned to pay attention to details and actively listen to other people's perspectives. Not only do I now know how to look at the bigger picture, but I also know how to pick the right place to zoom in to so I can achieve my goal. All abilities I know will serve me well as I go through the rigorous political studies program at Johns Hopkins. (385 words)
Watch this video for college essay writing tips that will help you stand out:
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There is an ancient power in storytelling, and journalism modernizes it. The stories I read in newspapers and blogs are all filled with imperfect characters and intricate conflicts in which the journalist is the narrator. My dream has always been to be that narrator, and I have been working toward that goal with the kind of singular focus I believe the best journalists have.
I started dreaming about it before I understood what it was. One of my first memories of this is from a vacation we took when I was about twelve years old. My family and I had spent a few days at the Rocky Mountain Amusement Park Resort, and I took it upon myself to write a detailed account of our trip. I remember being bored most of the trip and having to find ways to entertain myself because I was too short to go on many of the rides, so I essentially wrote an article that proclaimed that the Rocky Mountain Amusement Park was boring.
However, during the drive home, my brother read my article and told me I was wrong. That was the first time I thought about different perspectives and how they affect our individual experiences. That experience taught me to consider all points of view, regardless of my personal perspective.
As the editor-in-chief for my school newspaper, I always make it a point to remind my team to do the same. We aim to share the uncensored perspectives of as many students as possible, and I’ve found that the best way to do so is to talk and listen to different groups, especially those who have a different perspective than our own. This is why whenever one of the journalists proposes a story, I ask them to find out why the event happened, where it will lead and who it will affect.
This attitude has helped me expand my perspective beyond my little bubble and explore. In an effort to learn more about people’s experiences, I started reading diverse books and looking for stories that give me a chance to learn. I have gotten better at writing about polarizing-opposite opinions through an unbiased lens. I know that I still have a lot to learn, and I am eager and ready to do so. (380 words)
Johns Hopkins is one of the most competitive schools in the US, with an average acceptance rate of 11%. Applicants need to submit an outstanding supplemental essay if they want to get an offer of admission. This is especially true if you are trying to get into college with a low GPA . We recommend taking the time to review various essay examples from other schools that are equally prestigious and selective. For example, you may want to review Brown or even Columbia supplemental essay examples. Furthermore, the school has a section called "essays that worked" on their website that you should check out. When you are ready to put pen to paper, you should keep in mind that there are college essay review services that can help you edit your essay and ensure that it is as compelling as possible.
Last year, only 11% of the students who applied to Stanford were offered admission. This makes it one of the most selective schools in the country. You will need an outstanding application to get in.
Many assume that it is, but it is actually not. It is, however, one of the most prestigious universities in the United States and the world.
Every year, Johns Hopkins receives applications from thousands of students with high GPAs and impressive extracurriculars. Your essays give the school a chance to find out what else you bring to the table, and they give you a chance to set yourself apart as a candidate. In other words, you should not underestimate the importance of your college essays.
You will need to write one Johns Hopkins-specific essay in addition to the Common App essay.
Hopkins is one of the best schools in the US, and they only admit students with a high GPA. You will need at least 3.90 to be competitive.
You can improve the quality of your essays and make them stand out by having a strong opening, using specific examples, showing instead of telling, and ensuring that your essay is grammar and spelling error-free. If you're not sure how to do this, reach out to a college essay advisor for some assistance.
Your essay should begin with a "hook". We recommend starting with something catchy like an anecdote, an interesting or funny fun fact about you so that you can grab the reader's attention from the very beginning.
Johns Hopkins requires one supplemental essay that is at least 300 words long. Applicants can write 300-400 words.
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2023-2024 Johns Hopkins Supplemental Essay Prompt
Johns Hopkins University has released its supplemental essay prompt for the 2023-2024 college admissions cycle. Johns Hopkins, which in recent years, has asked applicants to answer only one supplemental essay, is again requiring applicants to answer only one essay prompt — a 300-worder. But it’s not the length of Johns Hopkins’ essay prompt for applicants to the JHU Class of 2028 that’s interesting. Instead, it’s the topic .
2023-2024 Johns Hopkins Essay Topic
Below is Johns Hopkins’ essay prompt for applicants to the JHU Class of 2028:
Tell us about an aspect of your identity (e.g. race, gender, sexuality, religion, community, etc.) or a life experience that has shaped you as an individual and how that influenced what you’d like to pursue in college at Hopkins.? (This can be a future goal or experience that is either academic, extracurricular, or social).
Johns Hopkins’ Supplemental Essay Is a Bold Response to SCOTUS Ruling
You read Johns Hopkins’ 2023-2024 supplemental essay prompt correctly . The school’s admissions committee is directly asking about a student’s race (or gender, sexuality, religion, community, or something else) to understand their perspective and lived experience.
It’s a bold move in response to the Supreme Court’s outlawing of the practice of Affirmative Action in late June 2023. At the time, some surmised that many of our nation’s elite universities would avoid directly asking applicants to comment on their race. But not us. No, we at Ivy Coach have a crystal ball . That crystal ball, once even cited on the pages of America’s oldest college newspaper, forecasted that America’s elite universities would still find ways to indirectly consider race in the admissions process to create diverse classes, capitalizing on the opening provided by Chief Justice John Roberts.
In the majority opinion, Roberts wrote, “At the same time, as all parties agree, nothing in this opinion should be construed as prohibiting universities from considering an applicant’s discussion of how race affected his or her life, be it through discrimination, inspiration, or otherwise.”
Yet not every school put themselves directly in the line of fire by using the word “race” in their supplemental essay prompt(s). Johns Hopkins — a school that proudly previously banned the un-meritocratic practice of legacy admission , or the tradition of offering preferential treatment to the progeny of a school’s alumni base — dared to do so. Agree or disagree with Affirmative Action, Johns Hopkins’ bold response to the ruling is noteworthy .
Johns Hopkins Even Changed Its Essay Prompt, Leaning into Race
And it’s not as though Johns Hopkins simply cut and pasted their essay prompt from last year. Last year’s essay prompt did not explicitly mention race. It read as follows:
Founded in the spirit of exploration and discovery, Johns Hopkins University encourages students to share their perspectives, develop their interests, and pursue new experiences. Use this space to share something you’d like the admissions committee to know about you (your interests, your background, your identity, or your community), and how it has shaped what you want to get out of your college experience at Hopkins.
How to Approach Answering Johns Hopkins’ Supplemental Essay
One doesn’t need to be an underrepresented minority to be able to answer this essay prompt. It’s why Johns Hopkins specifically cited any community that an applicant may deem themselves a part of or even, more broadly, a life experience that has molded their outlook on the world.
While race is explicitly mentioned in the wording of the essay prompt, applicants really have a blank canvas for this essay question. As such, they can direct their answer just about any way they wish — though it should ultimately address the second half of the hybrid question of how that perspective, community, or life experience has shaped what they hope to study at Johns Hopkins.
It’s thus essential to include a few specifics that only apply to Johns Hopkins (and, no, name-dropping professors or listing classes do not count as genuine specifics about an institution). After all, JHU admissions officers want to understand how that perspective will influence what you bring to their vibrant campus.
Ivy Coach’s Assistance with Johns Hopkins Essay Prompt
If you’re interested in optimizing your case for admission to Johns Hopkins and wowing admissions officers with compelling storytelling, fill out Ivy Coach ‘s consultation form , and we’ll be in touch to outline our college counseling services for seniors.
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Johns Hopkins University Essays that Worked
Johns Hopkins Essays – An Introduction
Writing college essays is one of the hardest parts of the college application process. If you’re wondering how to get into Johns Hopkins, you’ll want to start by familiarizing yourself with some Johns Hopkins essays that worked. These will help you approach the Johns Hopkins supplemental essays, one of the main Johns Hopkins requirements.
As you prepare to apply, reading Johns Hopkins essay examples can help you know how to structure your own essays. However, before we examine the Johns Hopkins essay prompts and Johns Hopkins essays that worked, let’s learn a bit more about Johns Hopkins .
You might be drawn to JHU because you are impressed by the Johns Hopkins rankings.
According to U.S. News , Johns Hopkins ranks:
- #7 in National Universities
- #9 in Best Value Schools
- #1 in Biomedical Programs
- #13 in Best Undergraduate Engineering Programs, just to name a few.
While the Johns Hopkins ranking may put the school on your radar, rankings won’t help you when it comes time to complete your Johns Hopkins application. And, as the Johns Hopkins rankings show, the Johns Hopkins application process is competitive .
Before you apply, familiarize yourself with the Johns Hopkins application and Johns Hopkins requirements. This includes the Johns Hopkins supplemental essays. Keep reading to learn more about one of the most important Johns Hopkins requirements: the Johns Hopkins supplemental essays.
To help prepare you to write your Johns Hopkins supplemental essays, we have provided two Johns Hopkins essay prompts and four Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples . By looking at Johns Hopkins essays that worked, you can learn how to approach your own Johns Hopkins essay.
Does Johns Hopkins have a supplemental essay?
Yes, one of the Johns Hopkins requirements is a supplemental essay.
In fact, the Johns Hopkins essay is one of the most important parts of your Johns Hopkins application.
You should use your Johns Hopkins essay to highlight who you are as a student, person, and community member. Later in this article, we’ll look at four Johns Hopkins essay examples. These can help inspire you as you draft and edit your own essays.
Keep in mind that Johns Hopkins supplemental essays will look different for different people. However, like our Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples, your Johns Hopkins essay should highlight how you’d contribute to campus life.
Depending on how strong of a writer you feel you are, writing your Johns Hopkins essay might feel like a challenge—but that’s okay! If tackling your Johns Hopkins essay feels daunting, you’re in the right place. We’ve selected our Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples to help you write an amazing Johns Hopkins essay.
How many essays does Johns Hopkins have?
Below, we will review multiple Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples. We”ll also look at Johns Hopkins essay prompts from past years. However, this year, there is only one supplemental Johns Hopkins essay . Still, remember that you will submit two essays as part of your Johns Hopkins application. These include your Personal Statement and your Johns Hopkins essay.
As you prepare your Johns Hopkins application, give yourself enough time to write both your Personal Statement and Johns Hopkins essay. As you’ll see from our Johns Hopkins essays that worked, writing a compelling essay is no easy feat.
Just like writing your Personal Statement, writing your Johns Hopkins essay takes time, brainstorming, and editing. We hope our Johns Hopkins essays that worked help you learn how to tackle the Johns Hopkins essay prompt.
Now, it’s time to jump into the Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples. Before we break down our Johns Hopkins essays that worked, let’s look at this year’s Johns Hopkins essay prompt.
Johns Hopkins Supplemental Essays
Before you can write a great Johns Hopkins essay, you need to understand your prompt. One of the first things Johns Hopkins admissions will consider when reviewing your essay is whether you addressed the prompt. Our Johns Hopkins essays that worked each show off who the writer is, but always in service of the prompt. Keep this in mind as you begin to write.
The Johns Hopkins essay prompt has changed over the years. So, make sure you always check the admissions page or the Common App for the current prompt. While our Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples may not reflect this year’s prompt, they can still help you write your college essays.
Here is the current Johns Hopkins essay prompt:
Founded in the spirit of exploration and discovery, Johns Hopkins University encourages students to share their perspectives, develop their interests, and pursue new experiences. Use this space to share something you’d like the admissions committee to know about you (your interests, your background, your identity, or your community), and how it has shaped what you want to get out of your college experience at Hopkins. (300-400 words)
This prompt is extremely open. The main topic of your essay is “something you’d like the admissions committee to know about you.” This could be anything. so feel free to get creative.
Don’t forget about the second part of the prompt: “how it has shaped what you want to get out of your college experience at Hopkins.” The second half of this prompt implies that you should be specific about what you want to do/accomplish/learn at Hopkins. Then, connect your goals at JHU back to what you’ve shared about yourself .
Johns Hopkins Essay Examples
Next, let’s dive into our Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples. To help you get started on your Johns Hopkins application, we’ll take you through four Johns Hopkins essays that worked.
Reading past essays can help give you an idea of how to approach the Johns Hopkins supplemental essays. Each of our four Johns Hopkins essay examples respond to one of two prompts from past Johns Hopkins applications.
While our Johns Hopkins essay examples respond to prompts from past years, they are still helpful. Additionally, this year’s prompt is quite open-ended. So, you can still apply tips from our Johns Hopkins essays that worked to your Johns Hopkins essay.
Johns Hopkins Essay Examples: Prompt #1
Let’s look at our first Johns Hopkins essay prompt. Note that this prompt is quite similar to the current prompt, so our Johns Hopkins essay examples will likely have a lot in common with successful essays for this coming year. However, this year’s Johns Hopkins essay prompt is more open-ended, asking students to share anything about them they’d like to share with Johns Hopkins admissions. As a previous iteration of this same prompt, this Johns Hopkins essay prompt asks students to specifically discuss their interests.
Our first two Johns Hopkins essays that worked respond to the following prompt:
Johns Hopkins University was founded in 1876 on a spirit of exploration and discovery. As a result, students can pursue a multidimensional undergraduate experience both in and outside of the classroom. Given the opportunities at Hopkins, please discuss your current interests (academic, extracurricular, personal passions, summer experiences, etc.) and how you will build upon them here.
The second part of each Johns Hopkins essay prompt is also a slight variation on the other. This prompt asks you to describe how you will continue to pursue and develop your interests should you be admitted to Johns Hopkins.
Now that we’ve discussed some of the nuances of this prompt and how it might impact our Johns Hopkins essays that worked, let’s look at the first of our Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples.
Johns Hopkins Essays that Worked #1
Since childhood, mathematics and science had some special magic for me. The mathematical numbers and formulas and the scientific experiments always fascinated me. This interest turned into my passion when I started doing hands-on projects for Science Olympiad in middle and high school and also engineering projects in high school. My quest for engineering is based on the creative application of mathematics and science which can be applied with judgment, rigor and creativity to develop and design new or better ways to utilize materials, technologies and the forces of nature for the benefit of our society.
I am particularly interested in Environmental Engineering discipline. Presently earth’s environment is being put under constant pressure for improvement. I have made many trips to India with my parents and found out how the natural resources are still immensely underutilized and how these natural resources, along with the engineering principles and design, can be leveraged in order to improve the quality of lives of common people all around the globe. My goal in life is to transform knowledge, experience and resources that I can gain through an engineering program at a leading institution like Johns Hopkins University into technologies that can be incorporated into products and services which in turn can fulfill these necessities. During my trips to rural India, one of the sights that particularly drew my attention was the state of the waste-water and how its quality can be improved with the help of water treatment technologies. Instilled with this idea, I have read many research articles in the journal called “Environmental Science & Technology”. I found few research articles that were emphasizing how to prevent nitrogen related impairment of waste-water quality. Researchers are honing in on the specific bacterial genes that are responsible for nitrous and nitric oxide formation in the waste-water. Their goal is to “engineer” this process so that these genes can not be properly expressed, thereby preventing the nitrogen related impairment of the waste-water quality.
Recently I have also gone through some research work of one professor from Johns Hopkins University’s Department of Environmental Health Sciences. His research focuses on environmental microbiology and engineering with an emphasis on the fate and transport of pathogenic microorganisms in water, food, and environment. This work includes extensive laboratory based research designed to develop and evaluate molecular detection methods which can be applied to field-based investigations. This type of research work always fascinates me. In future, as an engineer, my passion will be to carry out further research work in a field like this which can fulfill the necessities of the vast majority of people in this universe.
Why This Essay Worked
This is one of our Johns Hopkins essays that worked because it discusses a unified current interest—environmental engineering—through a variety of lenses. This writer showcases their passion through their extracurricular activities , their experiences traveling with their family, and the ideas they’ve explored outside the classroom. Then, they detail specifics about Johns Hopkins that relate to their interests. This includes the work of a professor they admire.
The first of our Johns Hopkins essay examples includes a lot of detail. In reading it, you get a clear sense of who the writer is, what they care about, and how they’d engage with JHU. They also cite a specific professor’s work, whose name has been removed in order to preserve anonymity in this article.
While the writer spends a lot of time discussing scientific concepts, their engagement with these concepts highlights their intellectual curiosity. In doing so, the first of our Johns Hopkins essay examples makes a strong case for the writer’s admission.
The essay is organized chronologically. It begins in childhood, then moves through middle and high school. It then addresses the writer’s personal experiences connecting to the larger world. Finally, it extends to what this student hopes to do at Johns Hopkins and in their future post-graduation.
As you’ll see in our other Johns Hopkins essay examples, there are different ways to approach organization. However, make sure your essay has a strong beginning and a conclusion that builds to a clear final point.
Let’s take a look at the second of our Johns Hopkins essay examples for this prompt.
More Johns Hopkins Supplemental Essay Examples
Johns hopkins essays that worked #2.
Essay Title: Statements of Justice
“She’s a mulatto, right?”
Why did he use that word to describe me? Is that all he sees? I am so much more than that.
“Can any men in the classroom help me carry this?”
Am I weak because I am a woman? Does designing and building a staircase and ramp not qualify me to carry boxes down the stairs? My strength is not directly derived by your perception of women, thank you very much.
“You don’t talk black.”
What does that even mean?
Statements. Underhanded questions and observations that I’ve heard my entire life. They made me question who I truly am. Then Trayvon Martin was killed. It was the first national event in my memory that exposed the injustices in our justice system, and the shadow of racism I naively thought no longer existed. I began coming to terms with the harsh reality that these comments were merely a reflection of the continuous legacy of discrimination in this country.
I struggled, over many long days and sleep deprived nights, thinking about who I am and where I fit in this seemingly endless fight towards equality. I wanted and needed to find a way to heal the injustices in our system. Such atrocities include the corrupt criminal justice system, the de facto segregation, the inequitable educational opportunities, the 80 cents for every dollar a man makes. And I want to be a part of the movement that changes it all.
I began working to alleviate some of these issues in both Greensboro and Dallas. In peace and conflict, I began working towards making positive statements. I attended a rally that supported equal access to education and ending voter discrimination through unfair laws. I became involved in advocating for Planned Parenthood. I participated in volunteer work to beautify my city and encourage people to pursue their education and future careers. My favorite was teaching reading and math to children in low income communities.
John’s Hopkins is located in Baltimore, a city that has grappled with the frustrations of racism. I want to continue pursuing my passion for equality and justice with Hopkins at my side. I want to practice justice by participating in the on campus Black Lives Matter protests and peaceful protests throughout Baltimore. I want to love mercy by being a part of Hopkins organizations such as the Tutorial Project. I want to walk humbly as an example of a strong, biracial woman. A woman that kids across Baltimore, and one day even across the country can look up to and say “I want to be like her one day.” John’s Hopkins is the place where I can promote equality and justice while also exploring my passion for science, math and engineering. It is the place where I will continue practicing my resolve to do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly. Hopkins is the place where I want to help end the injurious comments and begin a legacy of statements that emulate justice.
We chose to include this as one of our Johns Hopkins essay examples because of how powerful this student’s vulnerability is. This essay does a great job of connecting the pursuit of knowledge to how we build community and fight injustice in the world. In reading the second of our Johns Hopkins essay examples, you get a clear idea of what the writer cares about. You also can imagine how they would use their education for the greater good.
This essay has a particularly strong beginning and end. It opens with an attention-grabbing series of revealing questions and answers that tie into this writer’s final word on what they hope to accomplish at JHU. Without feeling like a list, this writer also touches on their many extracurricular and volunteer work . They also discuss the organizations they hope to join on campus .
If you want to read more Johns Hopkins essay examples, you’re in luck. Keep reading for another Johns Hopkins prompt and more Johns Hopkins essays that worked.
More Johns Hopkins Essay Examples
Next, let’s move on to our second batch of Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples. These Johns Hopkins essay examples respond to another past Johns Hopkins essay prompt.
While these Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples may seem like our previous Johns Hopkins essay examples, it’s important to note the differences between this prompt and the current Johns Hopkins essay prompt.
The next set of Johns Hopkins essays that worked respond to the following prompt:
Successful students at Johns Hopkins make the biggest impact by collaborating with others, including peers, mentors, and professors. Talk about a time, in or outside the classroom, when you worked with others and what you learned from the experience.
From this prompt, you can expect the next two Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples to touch on specific instances of teamwork and collaboration with others. This prompt is much more specific than the current prompt. However, thinking about a question like this can give you insights as to how you like to work with others and how you might do so at Hopkins.
There are two kinds of group work. The first is your proficiency group work where there is a task to be done and a leader simply divides the work among the group and it gets done in a fraction of the time it would take an individual. The second is work without a defined end goal. This means that work can’t simply be divided; it has to be first created by the group members and then their finished products have to be joined together by the group.
In my aerospace engineering major, there is a project that we did at the end of freshman and sophomore year. It was a high altitude balloon launch. This project took us about three weeks to plan out and follow through on each year. The first time, it was a basic launch, and we had to create a payload with temperature and altitude sensors as well as a Geiger counter, a GoPro, and a GPS tracking signal. Everything except the GPS and camera was created through an Arduino. We all worked well together, but it was a very rigidly drawn out project. We were given exactly what to do and we just did what we were told in a collective fashion by dividing the world up randomly and following instructions.
The second time we did our project it was slightly more complicated. We had all of the previous items: camera, GPS, etc… But, we were allowed some freedom in the set up this time. We added a 3D printed camera frame so that we could generate a 3D video by having one go pro face each direction. I added music too; I used a greeting card music speaker and attached a string to the trigger which we pulled on launch. Overall the project became more detailed and more complex, but still successful. In part, this was due to our experience. But, the most of the improvement was because we were able to express our individualism. We combined our own personalities to create a greater teamwork than just dividing up the work.
No one really knows the answer to everything. So, when you have the possibility to incorporate multiple perspectives in a group instead of focusing on one dominant perspective it increases the likelihood of success. Overall, it increases the enjoyment in the work because everyone can express themselves and their ideas are heard.
Like other Johns Hopkins essay examples, this essay focuses on a specific personal experience. This is one of our Johns Hopkins essays that worked because it translates an experience into a nuanced narrative.
The important thing to note in this essay is how the writer’s perspective comes through. The writer stresses that collaboration without a defined end goal leads to expressions of individualism. They also discuss how different perspectives increase the likelihood of success—a perspective that aligns with Johns Hopkins’ values.
Remember, our Johns Hopkins essay examples are not models you should copy your essay off of. Instead, think of them as blueprints designed to show you how to approach the prompt. Feel free to explore different ways to respond to the prompt and make your essay your own.
Back in middle school, there was nothing greater than the battle of the sexes. The competition seemed to transcend the classroom and appear in all environments. One of the most prominent instances is during a school-provided game show: boys vs. girls.
The game show was set up in two sets. In the first one it was the 8th graders (my grade) vs the 7th graders, and the second was an 8th grade battle of the sexes. This competition would be the first chance that we could actually quantify which sex was “better”, so the competition was taken very seriously. Since it was middle school, everyone was eager to participate, but in order to win we needed to strategize. Trying to settle down the group wasn’t easy, but after a couple of minutes I got all of the girls to be quiet and listen to my plan. My plan was to only send those skilled in each category to participate. At first some people didn’t want to agree, but then they realized that was the only way to win. For the academic categories, the girls who took honors classes went up. For sports categories, the athletic girls went up. For the teamwork categories, a group of cohesive close friends went up. For the artistic games, all the music and arts girls went up. The boys caught on to our strategy, but it was too late in the game for them to catch up. We overwhelmingly beat the boys and never let them live it down.
Before this game show, although the girls were always fighting with the boys, we were actually really divided amongst ourselves. Since there was no unity, it was easier for the boys to attack us and wear us down. However, our victory in the game show changed everything. We realized that teamwork was the only way for us to be strong and truly be “better” than the boys. From that point on, us girls remained united and used teamwork to defeat the boys in every opportunity we had. Anytime I have a great task to handle, I remember this instance in order to battle through the differences in the group and work together with others. Unity and teamwork are values that I adore dearly and I know they will be significant on my pathway to success.
This is the last of our Johns Hopkins essays that worked, and it takes a different approach than some of our other Johns Hopkins essay examples. This essay rounds out our Johns Hopkins essay examples because it demonstrates multiple facets of the writer’s identity. However, it still centers around the prompt’s topic of collaboration.
The writer highlights a moment of leadership where they took charge of their group. They describe how they created a game plan and got everyone on their side. Then, they show how this experience built community, uniting the girls despite their differences. Finally, they reflect on their personal growth. In doing so, they highlight how they plan to carry this lesson with them into the future.
These Johns Hopkins essay examples may have a narrower focus than what you might write for this year’s prompt. However, they still show how important specificity is to storytelling. By including specific details, you keep your reader engaged and excited about what you have to say.
Does Johns Hopkins care about essays?
Yes, your Johns Hopkins supplemental essays are extremely important to your application. As they review your application, Johns Hopkins admissions wants to understand who you are and what you will bring to campus.
Your Johns Hopkins supplemental essays are a terrific opportunity for you to demonstrate your academic passions through three facets, including your:
- Academic character
- Impact and initiative
- Personal contributions
Check out the Johns Hopkins Application Information page to read more about how the admissions team will review your application. This can also help you learn how to demonstrate your academic passions in your Johns Hopkins application.
However, keep in mind that your Johns Hopkins essay isn’t the only part of the Johns Hopkins application. Johns Hopkins reviews all applications holistically, meaning all of the Johns Hopkins requirements impact your admissions decision. While our Johns Hopkins essay examples are strong in their own right, you can also expect that they complemented an otherwise strong Johns Hopkins application.
Along with your supplemental essay, the Johns Hopkins requirements include:
- A completed application (either the CommonApp or the Apply Coalition on Scoir)
- Secondary school report
- Two teacher evaluations
- Mid-year report
Due to the continued impact of Covid-19, Johns Hopkins admissions has decided test scores will remain optional . So, the Johns Hopkins requirements do not include SAT or ACT scores. If you are planning to submit test scores, remember that they are no replacement for your Johns Hopkins essay.
How do you write a Johns Hopkins essay?
All strong Johns Hopkins essays start with research. Like the writers of our Johns Hopkins essay examples, you should decide what you hope to get out of JHU. So, don’t fixate on statistics like Johns Hopkins rankings. Instead, learn about what Johns Hopkins values in both their students and community.
Then, give yourself a complete writing process. Set aside time to brainstorm , work through different topics/ideas, and get your first draft down on paper. Once you have a draft, it’s time to edit , rewrite, and finally proofread. If possible, try to get your “final” draft complete a week ahead of the deadline. That way, you’ll have time to set it aside for a few days before you make your final edits.
Highlight your personal narrative
You’ve seen some great narratives shine through in our Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples. So, as you can tell, there are many ways to approach the Johns Hopkins essay prompt. Remember that your Johns Hopkins essay isn’t the only essay JHU will receive—the Johns Hopkins requirements also include your Personal Statement. So, think about how your Personal Statement and Johns Hopkins essay will play off one another. As you draft, consider how they both feed into your personal narrative.
Your Personal Narrative is the overall story your application tells to an admissions officer. When crafting your application, think about the overarching themes in your application. Then, look at how they connect to who you are and what you hope to bring to Johns Hopkins’ community.
Fit your essay with your narrative
If you’ve already chosen a topic for your Personal Statement, think about how your Johns Hopkins essay fits into that narrative. Each of your essays should reveal something compelling and complex about you. As we look at each of our Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples, we’ll take note of what we can learn about the writers of each essay and what Johns Hopkins admissions would have appreciated about it.
Our Johns Hopkins essay examples weren’t written overnight, so don’t plan on writing yours last minute. If you’re here reading through our Johns Hopkins essay examples, you’re likely already in a good place to start crafting your own.
Other Resources on Johns Hopkins University
There’s no secret formula on how to get into Johns Hopkins or how to write an essay like our Johns Hopkins essays that worked. So, make sure you do some research. Get a feel for the school and learn more about what they offer. This can be more helpful than you realize when it comes to writing your Johns Hopkins supplemental essays.
In addition to our Johns Hopkins essay examples, CollegeAdvisor.com has tons of great resources to help students learn more about Johns Hopkins. Check out our Johns Hopkins college page for an overview of the school, our how to get into Johns Hopkins guide , and our Johns Hopkins University panel .
For more resources on how to make your essays as strong as our Johns Hopkins essays that worked, check out our masterclass on editing your essays and advice from an admissions officer on making your essays shine .
Johns Hopkins University Panel
Johns Hopkins Essays that Worked direct from Johns Hopkins Admissions
If you want to read more Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples, make sure you check out Undergraduate Admissions Johns Hopkins essays that worked. This year, they have six Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples written by students from the class of 2025, so there’s no shortage of Johns Hopkins essay examples for you to review.
These Johns Hopkins essay examples can be a great supplement to those provided above. The admissions committee nominated each Johns Hopkins essay to be made available to future applicants as Johns Hopkins essays that worked. In each essay, applicants reveal something important about their experience and how it has shaped their character and values. In turn, they show how their values align with the values and culture at Johns Hopkins.
For even more Johns Hopkins essay examples, check out the 2023 Johns Hopkins essays that worked and the 2022 Johns Hopkins essays that worked.
Johns Hopkins Essays that Worked – Final Thoughts
We hope our collection of Johns Hopkins supplemental essay examples has given you a better idea of what to expect when it comes time to write your own! Remember, these Johns Hopkins essays that worked are meant to inspire you. Your own essays don’t need to look just like our Johns Hopkins essay examples—in fact, what matters most is that you tell your own story.
Once you’ve read through our Johns Hopkins essay examples, be sure to check out all of the resources available through Johns Hopkins and CollegeAdvisor.com. Happy writing!
This article was written by Stefanie Tedards. Looking for more admissions support? Click here to schedule a free meeting with one of our Admissions Specialists. During your meeting, our team will discuss your profile and help you find targeted ways to increase your admissions odds at top schools. We’ll also answer any questions and discuss how CollegeAdvisor.com can support you in the college application process.
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Johns Hopkins Introduces New Supplemental Essay Prompt for 2023-2024
Posted on August 1, 2023 by Craig Meister Leave a Comment
Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland has released a new supplemental essay prompt for students applying during the 2023-2024 admissions cycle.
All first-year applicants to Johns Hopkins (JHU) will now have respond to a prompt that explicitly references race even after The Supreme Court of the United States ruled in June that colleges can no longer admit students on the on the basis of race .
2023-2024 JHU Supplemental Prompt
Tell us about an aspect of your identity (eg. race, gender, sexuality, religion, community, etc…) or a life experience that has shaped you as an individual and how that influenced what you’d like to pursue in college at Hopkins. (This can be a future goal or experience that is either academic, extracurricular or social). 300 word limit (though currently the Common App provides 350 words for students to respond to this prompt).
Last year’s Johns Hopkins’ first-year applicant essay prompt read as follows:
Founded in the spirit of exploration and discovery, Johns Hopkins University encourages students to share their perspectives, develop their interests, and pursue new experiences. Use this space to share something you’d like the admissions committee to know about you (your interests, your background, your identity, or your community), and how it has shaped what you want to get out of your college experience at Hopkins. (300-400 words)
A new year, and new JHU! As most high school seniors applying to JHU do so through the Common Application, most JHU applicants will also need to respond – and respond well – to one of the Common App’s main essay prompts in order to be considered for admission at JHU.
Good luck to all those students applying to join Johns Hopkins’ Class of 2028. Start drafting!
About Craig Meister
Craig Meister is a college admissions expert who, for eighteen years, has had the great fortune of providing personalized post-secondary guidance to students and families from around the world.
Filed Under: Advice & Analysis , Essays , JHU , News
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How to write the johns hopkins university supplemental essay, updated for 2023-2024, essay prompt:.
Tell us about an aspect of your identity (e.g. race, gender, sexuality, religion, community, etc.) or a life experience that has shaped you as an individual and how that influenced what you’d like to pursue in college at Hopkins. (This can be a future goal or experience that is either academic, extracurricular, or social).
300 word limit.
This supplemental question may seem confusing or pointed to many, but in reality it’s asking a rather simple question:
What is something about you/your background that influenced your decision to study XYZ, and why do you want to study it at Johns Hopkins specifically?
Whether you choose to tell a dramatic story about a life-changing trauma or a lighthearted story about the first time you found your favorite hobby, the most important part of this prompt isn’t the impetus of your academic pursuit as much as it is your ability to tie the two together. How did growing up in a culturally diverse household make you want to study music? Why and how did your prized coin collection turn into an interest in studying economics at JHU?
Again, the reason is only one part of the full story.
Aside from connecting your identity/past to your major, the other important part of this prompt draws on how you’ve cultivated more experience/interest in preparing for your academic pursuits.
If you are a computer science major, for example, this would be the perfect opportunity to mention that app you built after being inspired by your love for coding. If you are a creative writing and political science double major, let your experience writing political speeches shine!
Although you won’t have all too much space to talk about the activities themselves (that’s what your activities list is for!), this essay gives you a chance to use relevant experience/activities to bridge your intended major or majors with your identity/background/interests of choice!
Lastly, if there’s a class, club, professor, alumni, or any specific reason(s) why Johns Hopkins is the place where you’d like to foster this passion, you better mention it!
Below is an example of what such an essay might look like for a student (let’s call him Timmy) who is interested in becoming a double major in film and psychology at Johns Hopkins. Timmy first became interested in bridging these two academic fields as a result of his love of horror movies, specifically those of Wes Craven (who happens to be a Johns Hopkins alumni), and has further developed his interests by conducting research with his local college’s psychology department and creating a short film that he recently entered into a community film festival.
The day my father showed me his favorite horror movie changed the trajectory of my life. Despite being quite young, I can vividly remember gripping his hand as I was overcome by an adrenaline-filled combination of terror and intrigue. What I remember more than the twisted plot, suspenseful score, and the film’s monster that can only be described as the personification of nightmares was my own bewilderment and obsession regarding how the film made me feel.
As inconsequential as it might seem, this viewing ignited what has turned into an academic passion for psychology that serves as the perfect supplement to my lifelong obsession with filmmaking. Experiencing the horror genre for the first time broadened my horizons regarding the emotional responses that media and art could elicit in a viewer. This experience was the catalyst for my interest in behavioral psychology and experience conducting research on cognition-emotion interactions at the University of Cincinnati’s Laboratory for Cognitive and Affective Neuropsychology.
In furthering my studies as both a social scientist and as an aspiring filmmaker and screenwriter, I am certain that Johns Hopkins is the perfect setting to provide me with a world class interdisciplinary approach to my academic interests. Aside from their film and media studies degree—which offers students the opportunity to specialize in screenwriting and showcase their work at the Maryland Film Festival—the psychology department’s courses such as “Primate Minds” will provide valuable lessons on behavioral and emotional responses. Lastly, alumni such as film director Wes Craven have demonstrated that Johns Hopkins fosters an environment that encourages students to truly master their interests and pursue their passions at the highest possible level, and it is my hope that I too will leave my mark on JHU’s campus and beyond.
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