Johns Hopkins University has created a new website designed to increase connections between the Johns Hopkins community and the local community.
The community website, found at http://community.jhu.edu, is powered by a database of resources that includes events, information about Johns Hopkins University and Medicine offices and local community organizations, and news articles about what's going on in the neighborhoods surrounding Johns Hopkins' Baltimore campuses.
The idea is to create a two-way communication, so that members of the local community can more easily find what they are looking for at Johns Hopkins, while also providing a place where they can share their own events and programming information with members of the Johns Hopkins community, said Glenn Bieler, the university's vice president for communications.
"Our goal was to create a true community website," Bieler said. "We wanted to make something both the external community and our own employees would find useful and would want to come back to again and again."
Created by the university's Office of Communications and Office of Government and Community Affairs, the new website includes a searchable events calendar with both Johns Hopkins events that are open to the public and community-focused events sponsored by local organizations that employees might be interested in attending.
A "Resources" section, based on the Community Engagement Inventory maintained by the Office of Government and Community Affairs, contains a large collection of Johns Hopkins offices and programs as well as area nonprofit groups. The resources include arts organizations, educational institutions, faith-based organizations, health clinics, libraries, neighborhood associations, recreational activities, and youth programs. The database is searchable by topic and location, and individual searches can be easily shared with others.
"This new website expands on something the university has been doing for years with the Community Engagement Inventory," said Tom Lewis, vice president for government and community affairs. "With the community website, we are extending our mission to create stronger ties with the city."
Work on the community website began in January with a series of conversations with local leaders and residents to learn what they would find most useful in a community website. Johns Hopkins is inviting the community to submit events and resources so the database will definitely grow over time, Bieler said.
"Our research clearly showed that no one wanted a site that only talked about what Hopkins is doing in the community," Bieler said. "What we heard from community members was that Hopkins is a big place and that they want better, more streamlined access to the information they are seeking. At the same time, they were interested in easily reaching the Hopkins community with their own events and information."
Beyond creating a robust local events calendar and providing a simplified point of access into Hopkins, Lewis said the administration anticipates that the community site will become one more way to connect with city residents.
"By sharing relevant information that affects both Hopkins and the areas surrounding our campuses, we are offering a new avenue for useful dialogue among neighbors," Lewis said.
Are you a Johns Hopkins employee or student with an event or resource you would like to see included in the new community.jhu.edu website?
To submit your event, please use the event submission form found on the Hub. Doing so will ensure that your event can be considered for inclusion on both the Hub and the community site (there's no need to use the "submit an event" button found on community.jhu.edu).
To submit a resource, please use the "submit a resource" button found on http://community.jhu.edu.
Posted in University News, Community