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How to Write the Johns Hopkins University Supplemental Essays

Johns Hopkins only has one supplemental essay that asks you to share something about your background or interests:

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)

Use this essay to dive deeper into topics or ideas that are important to you while giving the admissions committee more information about your values and goals. The admissions officers at Hopkins are interested in learning more about your background, your passions and interests, and how well you work with others.

To that end, focus on the central purpose of your essay: what do you hope to achieve as a new member of the Johns Hopkins community? Maybe you’re interested in pursuing a career in medicine. When did that start? Will you aim to major in biology and conduct research on campus to learn about a particular intersection between anthropology and evolutionary biology? Where did these curiosities and interests originate?

This essay is an excellent opportunity to tell admissions officers about your background. Do you have strong ties to a particular cultural, religious, or gender community? Maybe your background or community experience has affected your career goals (e.g., a member of the LBTQ+ community whose experience makes them want to become a civil rights lawyer). With this in mind, think about what you will bring to the Baltimore community – what will you continue or create for others?

We suggest that you work backward if you’re having a hard time coming up with a particular story, experience, or community to focus on. Think about what your specific short or long-term goals are in college, and then work backward to find the best way to express the roots of the motivation that has been shaping these goals.
Keep in mind that the mission of Hopkins is “To educate its students and cultivate their capacity for lifelong learning, to foster independent and original research, and to bring the benefits of discovery to the world.” In some parts of your response, be sure to write about what is important to you and how you hope to use the knowledge you learn at Hopkins to serve the communities around you. Hopkins is also known to appreciate students who can combine different fields of study to pursue interdisciplinary goals. If you have specific secondary interests, make sure to mention how the interest will support your choice of major or minor.

Remember to include how Johns Hopkins will specifically help you achieve your goals. Cite specific programs, classes, and research opportunities that align with your career pursuits to show that you have looked into the college at more than just the surface level. The winning formula for this essay is combining a solid reason for your academic/career interests with specific examples of how Johns Hopkins will help you achieve your goals.

And lastly, remember that it’s Johns HOPKINS, not Hopkin!