Hub Headlines from the Johns Hopkins news network Hub Sat, 23 May 2015 21:55:00 -0400 Men's lacrosse: Johns Hopkins rally falls short in NCAA semifinal loss to Maryland <p>A remarkable postseason run for the Johns Hopkins men's lacrosse team came to an end one game short of the national final Saturday, as <a href="">the Blue Jays had their seven-game winning streak snapped in a 12-11 NCAA tournament semifinal loss to Maryland</a> at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia.</p> <p>Hopkins (11-7), which had won eight of its past nine games after an uneven start to the season—a run that included a 15-12 win against the Terps on April 25—played catch-up all day and came up short at the end. The Blue Jays trailed 4-1 after the first period, clawed within 12-11 with 1:13 to play, but couldn't find an equalizer in the final minute.</p> <p>Maryland (15-3), the No; 6 seed, advanced to Monday's national championship game to face fourth-seeded Denver, which knocked off top-seeded Notre Dame 11-10 in overtime in Saturday's second semifinal game.</p> <p>John Crawley paced Hopkins with four goals, and Joel Tinney and Wells Stanwick added two apiece. Goalkeeper Eric Schneider made 13 saves.</p> <p>JHU, making its record 29th Final Four appearance overall and its first since 2008, was looking for its 19th national title game appearance.</p> <p><strong>Also see:</strong> <a href="">Box score</a></p> Fri, 22 May 2015 14:15:00 -0400 Asthmatics have less risk of fatal prostate cancer, Johns Hopkins research suggests <p>Men with a history of asthma appear to be less likely to develop lethal prostate cancer, <a href="">Johns Hopkins researchers found in a recent study</a>.</p> <p>The study, published in <a href=""><em>The International Journal of Cancer</em></a>, presents an interesting contradiction to past research linking prostate cancer with the type of inflammation found with asthma. The new study discovered that males with a history of asthma were 29 percent less likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer that spread or became fatal. Overall, asthmatic men were 36 percent less likely to die of the disease.</p> <p>But it's too early to conclude that asthma may in some way protect men from prostate cancer, cautions <a href="">Elizabeth A. Platz</a>, co-leader of the Cancer Prevention and Control Program at the <a href="">John Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center</a>.</p> <p>"We don't know yet whether the association we see in this observational study is a case of cause and effect," says Platz, who is also a professor of epidemiology at JHU's <a href="">Bloomberg School of Public Health</a>.</p> <p>The researchers launched thier investigation based on past studies linking prostate cancer with an immune response known as Th2 inflammation, which is found with asthma.</p> <p>"Cancer is often thought of as mediated by Th2 inflammation. So what we expected was that asthmatics would have a higher incidence of prostate cancer," says [Charles Drake] (, co-director of the Prostate Cancer Multidisciplinary Clinic at the Kimmel Cancer Center. Instead, he says, the new study "showed the exact opposite."</p> <p>The study followed 47,880 men ages 40 to 75, who filled out questionnaires on their health every two years from 1986 through 2012. Within this group, there were 798 confirmed deaths due to prostate cancer. For all those diagnosed with the disease, researchers dug into their medical background.</p> <p>In asthmatics, the research found lower risks of prostate cancer even when other factors were considered, such as medications or the stage of life when asthma was diagnosed.</p> <p>The study also tracked men with hay fever and found a different (though less conspicuous) association: That category turned out to be 10 to 12 percent <em>more</em> likely to develop fatal prostate cancer.</p> <p>Drake, an immunologist, and Platz, an epidemiologist, aim to continue the research with their other collaborators. They plan to "go back to the lab and try to characterize the nature of the immune cells present in the prostate," Platz says, to determine whether certain immune profiles or environments might be related to prostate cancer.</p> Fri, 22 May 2015 09:54:00 -0400 Johns Hopkins undergraduate tuition to increase 3.5%, financial aid 7% <p>Tuition for full-time liberal arts and engineering undergraduates at Johns Hopkins University will increase 3.5 percent this fall while the financial aid budget for those students rises 7 percent.</p> <p>The increase, $1,650, will bring the 2015-2016 tuition to $48,710 for undergraduates in the university's <a href="">Krieger School of Arts and Sciences</a> and <a href="">Whiting School of Engineering</a>. The more than 5,300 undergrads in those schools study at the university's Homewood campus in northern Baltimore.</p> <p>About 47 percent of Homewood undergraduate students receive need-based financial aid and do not pay full tuition. The average financial aid grant to those students covers nearly 60 percent of the total cost of attendance, which includes tuition, fees, and room and board.</p> <p>The total 2015-2016 undergraduate aid budget for the Krieger and Whiting schools is $83 million, a 64 percent boost since 2009. The university's president since that time, Ronald J. Daniels, has made undergraduate student aid a priority of his administration.</p> <p>Johns Hopkins' fundraising campaign, <a href="">Rising to the Challenge</a>, includes a universitywide goal of $753 million for student aid, $225 million of which is allocated for undergraduate financial aid. Already committed gifts for undergraduate aid include $100 million from philanthropist and former New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, a 1964 Johns Hopkins engineering graduate, and $59 million from other alumni and friends.</p> <p>Tuition supports both ongoing costs and enhancements in the student experience, including faculty recruitment; undergraduate research opportunities; library and classroom enhancements; and investments in student health and wellness, information technology, security, and other important student services.</p> <p>The Krieger and Whiting schools have now kept undergraduate tuition hikes below 4 percent for seven consecutive years; those seven years represent the seven smallest tuition increase percentages since the 1974-1975 academic year.</p> <p>While restraining tuition increases, Johns Hopkins continues working aggressively to check the growth of expenses. The university, for instance, has begun making procurement changes expected to save $10 million a year universitywide on items like office supplies, software, temporary labor, laboratory equipment maintenance, and travel.</p> <p>Homewood campus room and board rates—for a typical double room and "anytime" meal plan—will climb 2.1 percent this fall, to $14,540. That will bring the total cost of tuition and room and board to $63,250, up 3.2 percent from the 2014-15 academic year.</p> <h5>Tuition for other Johns Hopkins undergraduates</h5> <p>A 3.5 percent tuition increase will also apply to the nearly 300 undergraduate musicians studying full time at the university's <a href="">Peabody Conservatory</a> in Baltimore's Mount Vernon neighborhood. Their 2015-2016 tuition will be $42,631, up $1,442 from the current $41,189.</p> <p>The <a href="">School of Nursing</a>, with as many as 500 full-time undergrads studying in accelerated programs on the university's East Baltimore campus, will increase undergraduate tuition by 4 percent. Tuition for the 13-month accelerated track will be $71,784 for the entire program, up $2,760 from the current $69,024. The School of Nursing has announced it will end its undergraduate program after 2015-2016 and will focus on educating advanced practice and research nurses at the master's and doctoral levels.</p> Thu, 21 May 2015 15:01:00 -0400 Video of remarks by Rep. Elijah Cummings at Johns Hopkins commencement <p>Elijah Cummings, a longtime member of the U.S. House of Representatives who was re-elected in 2014 to serve a 10th term representing Maryland's 7th District, delivered brief remarks during Johns Hopkins University's commencement ceremony today at Homewood Field.</p> <p>Cummings, a Baltimore native, was one of eight people to <a href="">receive honorary degrees during the ceremony</a>.</p> <p>"You must be the agents of change, for you have been blessed with an awesome education," Cummings said. "You are the ones that can guide us the rest of the way. I've often said that our children are the living messengers we send to a future we will never see. You, you, and you are our messengers."</p> Thu, 21 May 2015 14:45:00 -0400 Video and full text of President Daniels' remarks at JHU's 2015 commencement <p><em>Remarks as prepared for Johns Hopkins University President Ronald J. Daniels for the universitywide commencement ceremony on May 21, 2015.</em></p> <p>To our honorary degree recipients, alumni, and trustees … to our faculty and staff, to our parents, family members and friends … and most especially to our graduates … welcome to the Johns Hopkins University Commencement for the great Class of 2015!</p> <p>Today, I want to talk about stories—yours and ours.</p> <p>Each of us sees ourselves—not surprisingly—as the protagonist of our story. So it's natural to assume your stories begin and end with you.</p> <p>At Hopkins, you experienced some seismic shifts.</p> <p>Literally.</p> <p>You entered the university during a hurricane … and then an earthquake, and showed typical Hopkins inventiveness and initiative by substituting regularly scheduled—mandatory, I daresay—orientation activities with mudslides on the beach.</p> <p>In your ensuing four years, Brody Atrium replaced the A level, air conditioning came to the AMRs—a truly remarkable feat of advanced engineering that one could not even have dreamed of—and kale chips briefly bumped Doritos off the CharMar shelves… These were times of great moment. Clearly.</p> <p>Now, more seriously, your college years are ending—at a time that is once again seismic.</p> <p>Each of us who learns, works and lives here in Baltimore has been touched in some way by the unrest that roiled our city just before your final exams began.</p> <p>Recently, in a jam-packed Shriver Hall here on the campus, journalist and West Baltimore native Ta-Nehisi Coates spoke about race in America, and the legacy of generations of discrimination that has emanated from our country's founding flaw of violent enslavement.</p> <p>He observed that we enter the grand narratives of our time midstream.</p> <p>The stories don't start with us. Other characters were there before. Decisions were made. Dynamics unleashed. Ideas, cultures, and systems are already deeply entrenched.</p> <p>Coates reminded us that the root causes of the rage we saw that night are not only of this moment, and will not be changed quickly. The complex and pernicious matrix of discriminatory housing policy, disparate educational opportunity, and mass incarceration has lasted decades and will not be undone without sustained and determined effort.</p> <p>A few days after Baltimore's unrest, I confided my concerns about the situation in our city to my dearest friend and mentor who lives back in Canada.</p> <p>He listened attentively as I enumerated, in painstaking and vivid detail, the various challenges buffeting Baltimore. And then, when I finished, he uttered two simple words: "critical junctures."</p> <p>Now, perhaps the import of that phrase is not self-evident. Nor is the sense of radical possibility it conveys. So let me explain.</p> <p>It starts with the social scientist's idea of path dependency.</p> <p>The idea is that policies, institutions, and customs arise in response to a certain set of starting conditions. And even when those starting conditions recede and are no longer relevant, the policies, institutions and customs that were created in their shadow, and which were long ago outdated and unjust, tend to persist—sometimes over decades, sometimes even over centuries. This is so because people become rooted in these familiar paths. Rather than endure the disruptions, the costs of, and adjustments to what is desirable change, they will opt to stick with what they know. They will opt for the status quo.</p> <p>And yet, every so often, we arrive at a moment that is so wrenching, so deeply unsettling that it makes the status quo untenable, and there is an opening for real and profound reform.</p> <p>Not even the heavy weight of history can thwart its logic.</p> <p>These are "critical junctures."</p> <p>And when they happen, all bets are off.</p> <p>Suddenly, the seemingly inexorable flow and rhythm of the story halts, and we have the chance to break with the past and change the course of the narrative. We can get off the path.</p> <p>The unrest of late April sparked a critical juncture here in Baltimore, and the response we see in our city reveals and will reveal much about the character of our community.</p> <p>Yes, our city's challenges—like our nation's—are daunting, complex, and persistent. But there is now a sense of palpable possibility. Things can—things must—change.</p> <p>Over the last several weeks, I have seen glimmers of the movement, of the instinct, of the yearning for change.</p> <p>Baltimoreans, of all stripes, are talking, they're convening, they're organizing, they're dreaming—with fierce determination and a can-do scrappiness—to embrace the imperative for reform in so many different contexts: more summer jobs for our city's youth, better schools and skills development programs, and criminal justice reforms, to name a few. And I believe that sustained change is possible so long as our collective resolve and shared optimism holds firm—that we are unshakeable in our commitment to change. In one year's time, imagine the progress we could make. Imagine the excitement and hope we could unleash if we were to show that here in Baltimore we began to bring better health, better education, and more jobs to our most challenged neighborhoods. That would truly be a national news story of note.</p> <p>For those of you who are staying in Baltimore, let's seize this moment together. Your city needs your ideas, your energy, and your optimism.</p> <p>For those of you who are going elsewhere know this: Though critical junctures don't happen often, they can happen anywhere and anytime.</p> <p>Graduates, your role—Hopkins education in hand—is to be open to that moment and embrace the radical possibility it entails.</p> <p>No matter where or when you enter a story, your critical thinking will allow you to build better institutions and policies. Your research will bring better health to vulnerable populations. And your artistry will compel us to more deeply understand our common humanity.</p> <p>When the moment arrives, and you face a critical juncture, we need you to be vigorous, bold, and smart in championing the truths you have discovered and which you hold dear.</p> <p>We are so, so proud of you all.</p> <p>Godspeed—and congratulations to the great Class of 2015!</p> Thu, 21 May 2015 13:30:00 -0400 Johns Hopkins University celebrates the Class of 2015 <p>Addressing a soggy crowd of graduating Johns Hopkins University students this morning, Pixar co-founder Ed Catmull emphasized the necessity of failure as part of a creative life.</p> <p>He urged graduates to think of failure not as a "necessary evil," but as a "necessary consequence of doing something new—and you should always do something new."</p> <p>Catmull, a five-time Academy Award winner and president of both Pixar Animation Studios and Walt Disney Studios, delivered his commencement address against a backdrop of umbrellas and clear plastic ponchos at a chilly Homewood Field. The computer scientist spoke of his experiences in Silicon Valley, the lessons he learned while building Pixar and later merging with Disney, and his memories of working with Apple CEO Steve Jobs. Throughout, he focused on the value of trying and failing.</p> <p>Catmull spoke after remarks from Johns Hopkins University President Ronald J. Daniels and Maryland Rep. Elijah Cummings, who both brought Hopkins' setting in the city of Baltimore to the forefront.</p> <p>Daniels characterized the graduating Class of 2015 by the "seismic shifts" they'd been through at Hopkins—arriving during Hurricane Irene, then experiencing an earthquake, and now graduating amidst a "critical juncture" for Baltimore as it heals from recent uprisings that made national news.</p> <p>Daniels called upon graduates who remain in Baltimore to bring "better health, better education, and more jobs to our most challenged neighborhoods—that would truly be a national news story."</p> <p><strong>Also see:</strong> <a href="">Complete recorded broadcast of Johns Hopkins commencement 2015</a></p> <p>Rep. Cummings, a Baltimore native now in his 10th term representing Maryland, spoke of a young man in the city who told him, "Congressman, I've always felt like I'm in my casket, clawing my way out." He urged the Hopkins graduates to become "agents of change."</p> <p>"Keep in mind that right now at Hopkins Hospital, a child is being born to save somebody, and you were born to save somebody," Cummings added. "Take that and understand that that is your mission."</p> <p>Before Catmull spoke, <a href="">Destiny Bailey, president of the Class of 2015</a>, described her fellow undergrads as "90s babies" who grew up on Pixar.</p> <p>Catmull, who brought a subdued presence to the stage, said he often hears the question, "How do you become creative?" when the better line of questioning would identify the <em>obstacles</em> to creativity.</p> <p>He said it's essential to respect "the fragility of new ideas," admitting candidly of Pixar: "In truth, all of our movies suck at first" before going through a process of trial and error. The 2009 movie <em>Up</em>, he said, started with a completely different premise of a "castle floating in the sky." He said the final product "bore no resemblance to the original idea."</p> <p>Catmull returned to the theme of necessary failures when discussing his longtime relationship with Jobs. The Jobs that achieved prolific success with Apple, Catmull said, was a man fundamentally "changed" by past failures—with his trademark brashness and intensity softened. He was "empathetic, kinder, wiser," with the ability to listen, Catmull said.</p> <p>More than 7,000 students all of Johns Hopkins divisions and campuses received their degrees at the universitywide ceremony.</p> Thu, 21 May 2015 13:00:00 -0400 Video and full text of remarks by Johns Hopkins senior class president Destiny Bailey <p><em>Remarks as prepared by Johns Hopkins University senior class president Destiny Bailey for the universitywide commencement ceremony on May 21, 2015.</em></p> <p>Good morning everyone: family, friends, faculty, and staff. And most importantly, good morning to my classmates and fellow graduates.</p> <p>Leading up to this day, we've all asked ourselves, "Am I ready for the world?" The real question should be though, "Is the world ready for me?" Well, the world is not only ready for us. The world needs us. Now, sitting here today, "This is real," we keep telling ourselves, but many of us still don't believe it.</p> <p>Students, take a look around you. All of this is for us. But no one accomplishes anything of value alone. We cannot forget those who have supported and loved us unconditionally during our time at Hopkins. Whether those people were your family, friends, or a faculty or staff member who took a chance on you, take the time today to let them know that they have contributed to the newest, shiniest version of you.</p> <p>I also want to acknowledge those who cannot be here with us today. I'd especially like to remember our classmates, Rebecca Grande and Frances Keenan who passed away during our time here. As the Johns Hopkins Class of 2015, let's celebrate their lives and all of our lives.</p> <p>Although today's ceremony is seemingly a commemoration of the end of our college experience, it is really a celebration of new beginnings. But there are no limits on what we celebrate today: our friends, our families, our happiness, our futures, or the fact that Chipotle now delivers in 67 U.S. cities.</p> <p>Today, I choose to celebrate the obstacles we have overcome so far, both as a class and as individuals. Without obstacles challenging our every action and encouraging us to find solutions, there would be no reason for change and ultimately, no progress.</p> <p>Unlike our study habits, which went from being progressively better freshman through junior year to progressively worse during senior year, I am confident that as long as we desire to, we will change and grow in ways that are truly important—we will become better humans. As we continue on our journey of personal and intellectual growth, we will shed our old skins and reveal the newest, best versions of ourselves. We will not be governed by the fear of change.</p> <p>Throughout our lives, there have been many times when we were afraid. When we applied to college, we were afraid we didn't look good enough on paper to make it here. When we came to Hopkins, we were afraid that we might not be happy enough to make our experiences what we knew they should be. Then, when we explored Baltimore for the first time and read the words engraved on the wooden benches, "Baltimore: The Greatest City in America", we thought, "Hmm … bold statement." What we really feared, though, was change.</p> <p>I know that when I moved here from my hometown of Laredo, Texas, I was scared and lonely, but eventually I knew that I, like all of you, would have to make a choice about this place—not only about Homewood, but also about Baltimore—unique, colorful, brilliant Baltimore. Would I—would we—call this home? We did.</p> <p>We have had many experiences at Hopkins, and not every moment in the last four years has been positive or easy. But what matters, as we look back, is not what the obstacles have been, but how we have dealt with them.</p> <p>I challenge you to welcome obstacles that can lead to change, and to be the change you want to see. Break down social barriers, find your most genuine self, and encourage others to do the same. Every day is a new day and I am continuously reminded to rise above myself, by you—the talented, hilarious, intelligent, and amazing people I have met here. We owe it to each other and to ourselves to define our Hopkins experience by those we chose to surround ourselves with—by the relationships we took the time to nurture because they're for life.</p> <p>Finally, I want us to promise each other something. Let's promise that we will keep life in perspective. Let's promise that we will live each waking day not with a hunger only for success, but with an everlasting appreciation for the people in our lives and the challenges we have overcome.</p> <p>Smile at the people next to you, because unafraid, we're moving on. Congratulations!</p> Thu, 21 May 2015 11:50:00 -0400 Johns Hopkins confers eight honorary degrees at commencement ceremony <p>A longtime Maryland congressman, an acclaimed pianist, and a leader in the fight against infectious diseases were among eight distinguished achievers to receive Johns Hopkins University honorary degrees at the universitywide commencement ceremony at Homewood Field on Thursday.</p> <p>This year's honorary degree recipients were:</p> <ul> <li><p><strong><a href="">Marin Alsop</a></strong>, music director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, and the first woman to lead a major U.S. orchestra. Her arrival in Baltimore in 2007 sparked greater collaboration between the BSO and the university's Peabody Conservatory, where she is a Distinguished Visiting Artist.</p></li> <li><p><strong><a href="">Ed Catmull</a></strong>, this year's commencement speaker and co-founder of Pixar Animation and the president of Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios. His efforts to bring together moviemaking and computer science led to blockbusters including <em>Toy Story</em>, <em>Finding Nemo</em>, and <em>Frozen</em>. He has won five Academy Awards.</p></li> <li><p><strong><a href="">Elijah Cummings</a></strong>, a longtime member of the U.S. House of Representatives, re-elected in 2014 to serve a 10th term representing Maryland's 7th District. A Baltimore native, Cummings is the ranking member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.</p></li> <li><p><strong>Anthony Deering</strong>, chairman of Exeter Capital LLC, a private investment firm, and former chairman of the board and CEO of the Rouse Company. He currently serves as a director of Vornado Realty Trust and Under Armour and is a member of the Deutsche Bank Americas advisory board, as well as the lead independent director of the T. Rowe Price mutual funds. He is an emeritus member of the university's board of trustees.</p></li> <li><p><strong>Lynn Deering</strong>, a volunteer and board member with Maryland Citizens for the Arts, a trustee on the board of Center Stage, and a member of the National Council for the American Theatre. Deering is also president of the Charlesmead Foundation, a trustee of the Baltimore Museum of Art, and a member of the national advisory board for the Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics.</p></li> <li><p><strong><a href="">Anthony Fauci</a></strong>, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, which is dedicated to the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of infectious diseases. Fauci serves as one of the key advisers to the White House and Department of Health and Human Services on global AIDS issues, and on initiatives to bolster medical and public health preparedness against emerging infectious disease threats.</p></li> <li><p><strong><a href="">Leon Fleisher</a></strong>, an acclaimed pianist who teaches at the Peabody Conservatory. In his prime, he was struck by focal dystonia, a condition that caused the fingers on his right hand to curl. Yet he continued to perform using just his left hand and dedicated himself to teaching and conducting. With treatment and perseverance, he regained the use of his right hand and continues to record today. He was the subject of the 2006 Oscar-nominated short documentary <em>Two Hands: The Leon Fleisher Story</em> and received a Kennedy Center Honors award in 2007.</p></li> <li><p><strong><a href="">William "Brit" Kirwan</a></strong>, chancellor of the University System of Maryland since 2002. Kirwan chairs the National Research Council's Board on Higher Education and Workforce and co-chairs the Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics. He also serves on the Business-Higher Education Forum.</p></li> </ul> <iframe width="640" height="360" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> Thu, 21 May 2015 11:20:00 -0400 Photos: Johns Hopkins Commencement 2015 <p>"I am very excited. I'm anxious. Most of all I think I'm relieved that it's finally over," said Dillon Ward as he wedged himself between fellow neuroscience majors. Sporting a Johns Hopkins emblazoned poncho over commencement regalia in preparation for the rainy procession to Homewood Field, Ward finally, decisively said: "I'm excited, mostly excited!"</p> <p>Chatter lingered throughout Remsen Hall as the soon-to-be Johns Hopkins University graduates took their numbered cards and continued to file in line, laughing, some admittedly too tired to function after a hectic senior week, a remarkable memory for many. But what was the hardest part of saying goodbye? All agreed: the people they'd met along the way.</p> <p>"The professors in our department are going to compare other years to our year in terms of how close knit we were," said Nathaniel Kato, a chemical and biomolecular engineering major who gathered across the way at Mudd Hall. "I think that's going to really be my class legacy. We've established such a close-knit community, and everyone has to live up to that."</p> <p>Outside Mudd, members of the Archipelago Project gathered to lead the pack in their march. Umbrellas popped up, protecting glittered caps decorated after multiple trips to Michaels with friends.</p> <p>"Everyone who knows me knows I say 'yolo swag,' so you know, if I had to put something on my cap this is it," said Byu Jareonvongrayab, who donned a "ridiculous" cap covered with flowers. For Ward, the opportunity to conduct research at a premiere research institute lured him to Baltimore, and four years later that research remains a high point of his Hopkins experience. "When you talk to people from other schools who've never had research experience or have never been able to work with world-renowned surgeons and researchers, it's very eye opening, like 'wow, Hopkins is an amazing place for people to collaborate.'"</p> <p>Students recalled how infrequently their university imposed limits on their interests, giving them the freedom to pursue whatever they wished—like studying bioethics at Homewood and French Horn at Peabody, like Alexis Toliver did.</p> <p>"I have absolutely no regrets," said Dan Bier as he geared up to march across campus for the last time as a Johns Hopkins student.</p> Wed, 20 May 2015 15:30:00 -0400 Video: Pixar president, co-founder Ed Catmull speaks at Johns Hopkins graduation <p><a href="">Ed Catmull</a>, a co-founder of Pixar Animation Studios, addressed the Class of 2015 at Johns Hopkins University's commencement today, urging the new graduates to broaden their view of creativity by accepting that failure is necessary.</p> <p>"Creativity is the process by which we solve problems, whether they're a story, on the job, a relationship with partners, or societal problems," Catmull said.</p> <p>Catmull said he's often asked, "How do you become more creative?" At Pixar, questioning the barriers to creativity—failures and mistakes—fuels the magic his team produces, he said. The Academy Award-winning movie <em>Up</em>, for example, was born as a "castle floating in the sky." The final version bore almost no resemblance to the original, with the exception of the colorful, giant bird, Kevin.</p> <p>"In truth, all of our movies suck at first," Catmull said. "I don't mean this in the sense that I'm being self-effacing or modest, I mean this in the sense that they suck. New ideas are fragile and often off track."</p> <p>He shared years of lessons he learned while building Pixar and later merging with Disney, and recalled the cultural and interpersonal barriers in place during his experiences in Silicon Valley.</p> <p>"I believe that everyone has the potential to be creative," Catmull said. "It is our choices that block or enable potential in others and in yourself. Make it OK to make mistakes."</p> Wed, 20 May 2015 14:40:00 -0400 Eisenhower Library hosts farewell cocktail party for Johns Hopkins seniors <p>Graduating seniors gathered Tuesday night at the MSEE-YA Later party to celebrate with classmates and to bid farewell to the Eisenhower Library and Brody Learning Commons, where many waking (and a few sleeping) hours were spent over the course of their Hopkins careers. Now in its seventh year, the party is a highlight of senior week.</p> Wed, 20 May 2015 12:50:00 -0400 Parting advice from members of the Johns Hopkins Class of 2015 <p>The commencement countdown comes to a close Thursday, when the Class of 2015 will take a final bow during the universitywide ceremony at Homewood Field.</p> <p>The momentous occasion calls for reflection, as nostalgic seniors think back on what they might have done differently and what matters most after everything is said and done. With that in mind, we asked 25 soon-to-be alums to share some words of wisdom for future Hopkins students based on what they've learned in their four years here. This is what they told us.</p> <h5>Tara Lawrence</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> New York City, N.Y.<br /> <strong>Majors:</strong> Creative Writing and Political Science</p> <p>"Everyone puts so much pressure on the fact that these years are going to be the best of your life. They're going to be great, but there's going to be so many ups and downs. You need to trust that you're going to be happy and there's going to be moments that are hard, but those moments make you stronger."</p> <p><br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Megan Pino</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Jupiter, Fla.<br /> <strong>Major:</strong> Biomedical Engineering</p> <p>"Go to sporting events. They're really fun, and a lot of people don't make time to go to games. Or maybe even join a sports team." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Phil Harding</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Pittsburg, Pa.<br /> <strong>Major:</strong> Biomedical Engineering</p> <p>"These friendships will last. It doesn't matter if you're across the world or across the state, they're going to last." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Abigail Sia</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Mineola, N.Y.<br /> <strong>Majors:</strong> International Studies and East Asian Studies</p> <p>"Challenges are not something to be feared. Whether it's that 300- or 400-level class or some really challenging research experience, if you're thinking about it, you're already half way there." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Woojin Kim</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Fairfax, Va.<br /> <strong>Major:</strong> Classics</p> <p>"You can make mistakes, and it's fine. Go find people who will support you, and when necessary, kick your butt so you can stand back up again." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Samuel Kennedy</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Home country:</strong> Ethiopia<br /> <strong>Major:</strong> Public Health</p> <p>"Studying is important, but take the time to do other things. It can be anything. Even taking the time to sit outside and read a book. Just do something separate. It will keep you sane." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Colin Pak</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Los Angeles, Calif.<br /> <strong>Majors:</strong> International Studies and Sociology</p> <p>"Fun is whatever you want it to be. Whether it's going out with your friends or staying in to watch a movie, don't be pressured to do what everyone else wants to do."<br /> <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Jasmine Roberts</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Tampa, Fla.<br /> <strong>Majors:</strong> Neuroscience and Psychology</p> <p>"Don't limit yourself. When I went off campus, I met genuine friends. Go out and explore."</p> <h5>John Cotoia</h5> <p><strong>Hometown:</strong> Ocean Side, Calif.<br /> <strong>Major:</strong> Molecular and Cellular Biology</p> <p>"Get out there and talk to as many people as you can the first two weeks of coming to Hopkins. Literally say hello to everyone, smile to everyone when you're walking by, and try to keep that going throughout your four years here." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Sinmidele Badero</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Long Island, N.Y.<br /> <strong>Major:</strong> Public Health</p> <p>"One thing I wish I did earlier was get more involved in the community. I would recommend that any student that comes here at least partake in one or two community projects or community service." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Adam Dec</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Clark Summit, Pa.<br /> <strong>Major:</strong> Earth & Planetary Sciences</p> <p>"Do research that you're interested in because it's one of the best things about Hopkins. If you don't take advantage of that as an undergraduate, you're really missing out on all this university has to offer." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Troy Sharpen</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Downingtown, Pa.<br /> <strong>Major:</strong> Electrical Engineering</p> <p>"It's really important to learn how to collaborate with people and make friends with people who are good at a lot of different things. That way you can learn what you like and what you're good at." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Elizabeth Sherwood</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> New York City, N.Y.<br /> <strong>Major:</strong> Writing Seminars</p> <p>"You don't have to stick with the class you signed up for. If you want to shop around, it's completely normal, and you don't have to feel obligated to stay with something you don't like. You should enjoy every class you're in." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Victoria Dawe</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Rome, Italy<br /> <strong>Majors:</strong> Chemical & Bimolecular Engineering</p> <p>"Try everything new and have an open mind. Don't close yourself off to any opportunity when you're at Hopkins. At the same time don't spread yourself too thin. Know when to ask for help, because that's what will get you through."</p> <p><br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Mahzi Malcolm</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Oklahoma City, Okla.<br /> <strong>Major:</strong> Cognitive Science</p> <p>"Join as many clubs as you'd like. Take advantage of your time here. Join everything. You meet people that way, and there are a lot of learning experiences you get out of that." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Tom Swift</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Los Gatos, Calif.<br /> <strong>Majors:</strong> Materials Sciences & Engineering and Economics</p> <p>"Explore all of Baltimore. Go to the end of every bus route, see everything there is to see, every museum. Really explore all the different neighborhoods in the city because they're totally unique."</p> <p><br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Sunny Cai</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Nashville, Tenn.<br /> <strong>Majors:</strong> Molecular & Cellular Biology and East Asian Studies</p> <p>"Whether it's academics, extracurricular, or interpersonal relationships, the amount of effort you put in will define what you get out of the experience." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Austin Jordan</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Colfax, N.C.<br /> <strong>Majors:</strong> Biomedical Engineering and Neuroscience</p> <p>"A lot of people who come here have never really had to study before, and they just blow off their freshman fall. It's cool to make friends and get involved in student groups, but you should really use freshman year to learn to study." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Taylor Lam</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Thousand Oaks, Calif.<br /> <strong>Major:</strong> Biomedical Engineering</p> <p>"Find upperclassmen in your major because they will know so much more about classes and activities than any advisor or website."</p> <h5>Annie Hosler</h5> <p><strong>Hometown:</strong> Piedmont, Calif.<br /> <strong>Major:</strong> Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering</p> <p>"Get the unlimited meal plan and come to late night every night because it's the best meal at Hopkins. Get the pancakes." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Dev Patel</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Camp Hill, Pa.<br /> <strong>Major:</strong> Mechanical Engineering</p> <p>"Branch out. Find a few clubs that you're really involved in and stick with them. You'll make your best friends in those clubs and that will keep Hopkins memorable." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Bailey Richards</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Princeton, N.J.<br /> <strong>Majors:</strong> Public Health and Economics</p> <p>"I wish I'd gone to professors office hours starting freshman year. They're a really great resource, and it gives you a chance to get to know your professors better." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Andrew Austin</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Morristown, N.J.<br /> <strong>Majors:</strong> Applied Mathematics and International Studies</p> <p>"Get as much experience as you can. Although it's useful to have the knowledge from classes, in the end having those experiences will push you forward and will get you to the next step in life." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Matthew Lehmann</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Queens, N.Y.<br /> <strong>Majors:</strong> ChemBe and Econ</p> <p>"Really get out of just doing things in your major. You can have a much better Hopkins experience if you branch out and try classes in other majors and make friends in other majors so you're not constrained with what you do. You might think you know what you want to do, but you might not." <br clear="both" /></p> <h5>Ranita Ghosh</h5> <p><img src="" align="left" hspace="5"/><strong>Hometown:</strong> Ashland, Mass.<br /> <strong>Majors:</strong> Applied Mathematics & Statistics and Economics</p> <p>"Ask for help when you need it, and don't be afraid to do that." <br clear="both" /></p> Wed, 20 May 2015 08:38:00 -0400 13 Johns Hopkins senior athletes receive degrees early in special ceremony <p>Thirteen Johns Hopkins University senior athletes, including 10 members of the Final Four-bound Hopkins men's lacrosse team, received their diplomas during a special ceremony Tuesday afternoon, two days earlier than the rest of the Class of 2015.</p> <p>Scheduling conflicts would have prevented the athletes from participating in the <a href="">universitywide commencement ceremony</a> Thursday morning at Homewood Field. The men's lacrosse team will face Maryland in an NCAA tournament semifinal game Saturday in Philadelphia. Several members of the men's and women's track teams—including three seniors—will compete in the NCAA championship meet in Canton, New York, this weekend.</p> <p>Johns Hopkins University President Ronald J. Daniels and Provost Robert C. Lieberman (both in full regalia) presided over the ceremony, which was held in the Board of Trustees meeting room in Hodson Hall. The athletes' families and friends were invited to attend.</p> <p>The graduating athletes were Phil Castronova (economics), Robert Enright (economics), Brady Faby (political science), Bronson Kelly (economics), John Kelly (economics), Drew Kennedy (political science), Michael Pellegrino (economics), Nikhon Schuler (economics), Eddie Schurr (international studies), and Wells Stanwick (political science), all members of the Blue Jays men's lacrosse team; and track athletes Michael Spadaro (applied mathematics and statistics), Frances Loeb (psychology), and Ashley Murphy (international studies).</p> <p>"I understand you have some unfinished business off-campus," Lieberman joked during his remarks.</p> <p>Daniels ended the official conferral of degrees with an unofficial but presidential "Go, Blue Jays!"</p> <iframe width="480" height="270" src="//" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen webkitallowfullscreen style="border: 0 none transparent;"></iframe> Tue, 19 May 2015 14:00:00 -0400 Johns Hopkins student balances computer studies, quidditch—and cystic fibrosis <p>Majoring in computer science at Johns Hopkins is tough enough, but it's even more challenging when must a student must also keep a life-threatening disease like cystic fibrosis under control.</p> <p>Rachel Kinney, a 20-year-old Pittsburgh resident who just finished her sophomore year at Johns Hopkins, has been up to the task. She has attended to her studies, given herself daily health treatments, and also found some spare time to play video games with her friends in her dorm. She even competed on a campus Quidditch team.</p> <p>During her spring semester, Kinney allowed a camera crew from the Maryland-based <a href="">Cystic Fibrosis Foundation</a> to follow her through her campus routine. The resulting video is part of a series that showcases the everyday lives of adults with cystic fibrosis and the challenges they face.</p> <p>Cystic fibrosis is a genetic disease that primarily affects the lungs and digestive system. An estimated 30,000 children and adults in the United States, and 70,000 worldwide, have CF. More information about the disease can be found at <a href=""></a>.</p> <p>In the following interview Rachel talks about why she chose to share glimpses of her life as Johns Hopkins undergraduate:</p> <p><strong>How did you happen to be invited to do this video about your life at Johns Hopkins?</strong></p> <p>I've been doing speeches for the CF Foundation since I was 3 years old in my hometown of Pittsburgh, and over the years my mom has become extremely involved in all of the work that the foundation does, even at a national level. Through my own experiences and my mom's involvement, the foundation has come to know me, and they invited me to be featured in this video series.</p> <p><strong>Why did you choose to participate?</strong></p> <p>For me, this project was about reaching out to other CF kids who are in college, or will be going to college soon, and sharing my experience with them. The most critical thing to a CF patient is staying on top of the disease. In college, your whole lifestyle changes dramatically, and you have to stay on top of the disease more than ever before.</p> <p>It is a hard transition for anyone, but for someone with CF, CF has to be one of your highest priorities at all times. I wanted to share my experiences with other CF patients and parents to show that it is absolutely possible to live a happy, normal, productive life in college and continue to combat CF. I hope my experiences can act as an example for anyone who is worried about or is struggling with CF in college.</p> <p><strong>What do you hope that your fellow Johns Hopkins students and others will take away from viewing this video about your studies and other activities at JHU, as well as the treatment you must undergo because of your CF?</strong></p> <p>To people like my fellow classmates, I hope this video spreads awareness of cystic fibrosis. If anyone they know is struggling with college, for any reason, one of the greatest things you can offer is your support. And if they, themselves, are struggling, I hope that this video inspires them to keep moving forward through whatever life throws at you, because with determination and support, anything is possible.</p> <p><strong>Is there anything that you have not been able to do at Johns Hopkins because of your CF? Do your fellow students treat you differently because of it, or do they not even realize you have the disease?</strong></p> <p>I'm am proud to say that there is nothing at JHU that I have not been able to do because of my CF. That is not to say that it's been easy. Staying on top of my CF routine along with all the normal facets of college is one of the most challenging things I have had to deal with in my whole life.</p> <p>If I didn't tell people that I have CF, nobody (aside from my roommates) would ever know. The only outward symptoms are often a consistent cough, and salty skin. I wear CF on my sleeve and have never understood why I wouldn't. I have never met anyone who didn't accept me for who I am in that regard. It's just one thing that I have to deal with in life that most people are lucky enough not to have to deal with.</p> <p><strong>When someone asks you what CF is, how do you describe it in the most easy-to-grasp terms?</strong></p> <p>To put it very simply, I describe CF as a genetic disease that mostly targets the lungs and digestive system. My lungs and digestion don't work as they are supposed to, so I have to put a lot of time and effort into keeping my lungs and body healthy. Otherwise, my lungs would scar and deteriorate, and I would not be able to get any nutrients from my food. There is much more to CF than just this short description, but that is it in a brief nutshell.</p> <p><strong>What are your career aspirations? What do you hope the future holds for you in, say, 10 years?</strong></p> <p>I don't know exactly what the world of computer science holds for me yet. All I know is that I love it! I like to get creative, and I love to get technical. I hope to find a job down the line that lets me combine the two in fantastic and exciting ways!</p> Mon, 18 May 2015 13:56:00 -0400 Complete coverage of commencement week at Johns Hopkins <iframe src="" width="100%" height="750" frameborder="no" allowtransparency="true"></iframe><script src=""></script>[<a href="" target="_blank">View the story "Johns Hopkins Commencement 2015 - #JHU2015!" on Storify</a>] Mon, 18 May 2015 12:04:00 -0400 Johns Hopkins researchers study foreign tax loopholes for U.S., European firms <p>Although critics knock United States-based companies like Apple, Google, and Starbucks for dodging taxes overseas, a new analysis shows that European companies in the U.S. are enjoying the same sort of tax breaks.</p> <p>A paper co-authored by two Johns Hopkins University researchers and <a href="">published today by the Progressive Policy Institute</a>, concludes American companies are indeed getting tax breaks in Europe, but foreign companies in the U.S. are paying as much as 40 percent less federal income tax than their American counterparts.</p> <p>"European politicians who complain about knowledge-based American companies not paying enough taxes in Europe have a point," the authors write. But, "they are also being hypocritical."</p> <p><a href="">Paul Weinstein</a>, director of the university's graduate program in public management, and <a href="">Sarah O'Byrne</a>, a program coordinator with the <a href="">Center for Advanced Governmental Studies</a>, wrote "The Blame Game: Multinational Taxation in an Era of Knowledge" along with Progressive Policy Institute economist Michael Mandel. With international organizations such as Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development working to reform corporate tax rules in developed countries, the writers say the problem isn't as clear-cut as it seems and the low taxes some American firms are paying in Europe appear to be in line with international standards.</p> <p>The researchers analyzed Internal Revenue Service data from 2011, the most recent year for which data was available, to compare taxes paid by foreign-owned companies in the U.S. with comparable domestic companies. For the entire information sector, domestic firms paid 1.5 percent of revenue in federal income taxes while foreign companies paid 0.9 percent—about 40 percent less.</p> <p>Domestic companies also paid "significantly higher" federal income taxes than foreign ones in industries including information services, telecom, motion pictures, securities trading, electronic markets, publishing, electronic markets, and computer and electronics manufacturing, the team discovered.</p> <p>"[W]e can infer that foreign companies [in knowledge industries] are able to arrange the location of their intangible capital in a way that reduces their taxes," they wrote.</p> <p>In addition to federal tax breaks, state and local entities "typically dangle a variety of incentives," to foreign firms, the researchers found, including infrastructure improvements, free or below-market price land, and low-cost housing.</p> <p>The size of these packages vary considerably by location and industry. According to the paper, in 2013, the group Good Jobs First found that 18 of the top 100 economic development packages in the U.S. went to foreign controlled firms.</p> <p>These strategies adopted at the state and local level are directly comparable to the way that some of the most economically successful European countries, such as Ireland, have been able to build major tech employment bases with low tax rates, the researchers found.</p> <p>"European criticisms of the taxes paid by American-based companies in knowledge-based industries are in part unfair, although there are clearly loopholes that need to be closed," the authors conclude. "As governments move towards implementing new structures for taxing knowledge-based multinationals, on a broader scale, they are going to have to decide whether they want more immediate tax revenue or more growth."</p> Mon, 18 May 2015 11:37:00 -0400 Johns Hopkins School of Education to launch education policy institute <p>The Johns Hopkins University School of Education will open a policy institute this summer led by David M. Steiner, a former New York state education commissioner.</p> <p>The Institute for Education Policy is set to open on August 1. Steiner has also been appointed a professor at the School of Education.</p> <p>"We are very excited to be establishing this institute that will offer the latest research-based direction to policy makers to aid in the development of more effective approaches to educational practice," said David W. Andrews, dean of the school. "We are especially proud that Dr. Steiner has agreed to direct our efforts. He brings a unique record of achievement as a policy leader, education reformer, and scholar."</p> <p>As commissioner of education for New York, Steiner took a lead role in the state's $700 million Race to the Top application to support the redesign of state standards, assessments, and charter school authorization. New York's bid included major funding for new curricula and a significant raising of standards for students and future teachers.</p> <p>Steiner, the former dean at the Hunter College School of Education, achieved national recognition for clinically-rich teacher residencies, a teacher training partnership with charter school networks, and major innovation in the video analysis of teaching. Under his leadership, the Hunter College School of Education received the highest ratings in New York—and among the highest in the country—from the National Council on Teacher Quality, and the prestigious Christa McAuliffe Excellence in Teacher Education Award.</p> <p>Steiner also founded <a href="">The CUNY Institute for Education Policy</a>, which has earned widespread credibility as a non-partisan, public space where educational leaders from diverse organizations engage with important research and innovative ideas. The new institute at Johns Hopkins is expected to continue this work in New York City in partnership with Hunter College.</p> <p>"I am honored to be joining Dean Andrews and the highly distinguished faculty at the Johns Hopkins School of Education," Steiner said. "The opportunity to create an Institute for Education Policy dedicated to education reform through research-based practice is immensely exciting, and Hopkins provides the ideal environment to undertake this critically important work."</p> Sun, 17 May 2015 20:25:00 -0400 Men's lacrosse: Johns Hopkins withstands Syracuse rally to punch ticket to Final Four <p>Wells Stanwick's dramatic goal with a second left in the third quarter capped a decisive run for the Johns Hopkins men's lacrosse team, which <a href="">held off a furious Syracuse rally in the closing minutes to score a 16-15 win in an NCAA tournament quarterfinal</a> played at Navy–Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis, Maryland, on Sunday afternoon.</p> <p>The Blue Jays (11-6), winners of seven straight games and eight of their past nine, advanced to the NCAA semifinals for the first time since 2008. Hopkins will take on sixth-seeded Maryland on Saturday at 3:30 p.m. at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia. Top-seeded Notre Dame and No. 4 seed Denver will face off in the other semifinal.</p> <p><strong>Also see:</strong> <a href="">Complete NCAA men's lacrosse tournament bracket</a></p> <p>JHU seemingly had the game in hand when Freshman Shack Stanwick scored his fourth goal of the game to give the Blue Jays a 15-10 lead with just under four minutes remaining. But the Orange (13-3)—the tournament's No. 2 seeded despite finishing the season as the No. 1-ranked team in the nation—scored a pair of goals to close within 15-12. Then, after an empty net goal by JHU's Ryan Brown, scored three more times in a span of 1:23 to close within one with 23 seconds to play. Syracuse had won 11 of 12 fourth-quarter faceoffs to that point, but Hopkins freshman Hunter Moreland won a critical faceoff and time expired before the Orange could muster a final shot.</p> <p>Wells and Shak Stanwick each had four goals and two assists for the Blue Jays, who erased a 7-6 halftime deficit by outscoring Syracuse 5-1 in the third period. That burst was capped by a remarkable individual effort by Wells Stanwick, who took the ball on a restart with four second remaining, eluded his defended, then dove past the crease and beat Syracuse goalkeeper Bobby Wardell with a high shot with just a tick remaining on the clock.</p> <p>Brown and Holden Cattoni added two goals apiece for Hopkins, and goalkeeper Eric Schneider made 15 saves.</p> <p><strong>Also see:</strong> <a href="">Hopkins vs. Syracuse box score</a></p> <p>Saturday's game will mark the 29th Final Four appearance for Johns Hopkins, which had lost its past four NCAA quarterfinal games (2009, 2011, 2012, 2014).</p> <p>For more information about the NCAA men's lacrosse Final Four, including ticket information, visit <a href=""></a>.</p> Fri, 15 May 2015 13:24:00 -0400 Johns Hopkins University earns A- on global health research report card <p>Johns Hopkins University recently received the highest score among universities on a report card that assigned grades for global health research.</p> <p>Hopkins scored an A- on the <a href=""><em>University Report Card: Global Equity and Biomedical Research</em></a> for 2015, outranking 58 other leading research universities in the U.S.</p> <p>The report card comes from the student-driven <a href="">Universities Allied for Essential Medicine</a>. The group formed at Yale in 2001, when students there successfully got permits moving with Bristol-Myers-Squibb to allow generic production of an HIV/AIDS drug in sub-saharan Africa, triggering dramatic price reductions.</p> <p>Their report card is intended as a call to arms for universities to challenge the typically profit-driven model of drug research and development. As a <a href="">related blog post from <em>The Lancet</em> notes,</a>, "pharmaceutical companies are increasingly relying on universities to do early stage creative research, which effectively turns publicly funded research into privately owned profit." This system can often get jammed up, the author writes, pointing to the example of Ebola vaccines "sitting on shelves for over a decade, untested on humans," despite West Africa's urgent need for them now.</p> <p>The UAEM study ranks universities based on three factors: innovation of research, access and licensing, and global health education efforts. Hopkins received an B+, A, and A- in those categories, respectively.</p> <p>The group calls for increased funding of research focused on low- and middle-income countries, as well as more efforts in licensing of medical innovations to encourage low-cost production.</p> <p>In UAEM's first such report card, released two years ago, Hopkins scored a B, the highest score of any U.S. university (a distinction it shared with four others).</p> <p>Emory University; University of Washington, Seattle; and Harvard University received a grade of B+ on this year's report.</p> Fri, 15 May 2015 12:15:00 -0400 Secondhand marijuana smoke can cause range of detectable effects, study finds <p>Marijuana's active ingredient can show up in tests even for nonsmokers, if they've had concentrated exposure to secondhand smoke.</p> <p>That's one of the findings from the first <a href="">comprehensive study</a> on secondhand marijuana smoke since the 1980s, conducted by the <a href="">Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine</a>. In the decades since then, the potency of the drug, in its street form, has tripled.</p> <p>The new study, published this month in <a href=""><em>The Journal of Drug and Alcohol Dependence</em></a>), tested secondhand exposure under "extreme conditions" in an unventilated room filled with pot smoke. After spending an hour in such conditions, nonsmokers showed "positive drug effects in the first few hours, a mild sense of intoxication, and mild impairment on measures of cognitive performance," said study author <a href="">Ryan Vandrey</a>, associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral science at Hopkins.</p> <p>In addition, detectable amounts of THC—tetrahydrocannabinol, pot's active ingredient—showed up in their blood and urine samples afterwards, in some cases enough to test positive for workplace or commercial drug testing programs.</p> <p>The study's lead author, Evan S. Herrmann, noted that testing conditions constituted "a worst-case scenario." Those conditions, replicated in "the real world … couldn't happen to someone without him or her being aware of it," said Hermann, a postdoctoral fellow in psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Hopkins.</p> <p>The study paired marijuana smokers with nonsmokers in an acrylic-walled room, with the smokers going through 10 high-potency cannabis cigarettes. In one session, the room's ventilation fans were on; in another, they were turned off.</p> <p>Non-smokers exposed to secondhand smoke with fans running reported no effects other than hunger. Without fans, those exposed to smoke reported feeling "pleasant," more tired, and less alert. Also, in tests of their mental cognition—a basic numbers drill or a computerized grid pattern test—those in the unventilated study responded more quickly but made more mistakes than they did before their exposure to the smoke.</p> <p>"This study is a significant update in our knowledge of cannabis smoke effect on nonsmokers and has implications in many arenas, including drugs and driving," says co-author <a href="">Edward J. Cone</a>, a Hopkins professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences who performed the early passive inhalation studies in the 1980s.</p> <p>The latest study had support from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, an agency in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that sets standards for federal workplace drug testing. In looking at different ways of measuring drug use and exposure, the agency was interested in more information on the effects of secondhand smoke on drug test results, Vandrey said.</p>