Across Johns Hopkins University's Homewood campus this past weekend, students were joined by their parents, siblings, extended family members, and friends as part of the annual Family Weekend. Despite a rainy and overcast start to the festivities, families spent the weekend touring campus, sitting in on classes, or taking in a football game or one of the many culture or theater shows put on by students.
"Family Weekend is a treasured tradition that brings our Blue Jay families together for a chance to learn about campus life and the rich experience that is a Johns Hopkins education," says Kesha Williams, director of parent and family relations for Homewood Student Affairs. "We have over 60 programs planned that are very diverse in nature and allow families and students to enjoy campus and learn more about the area."
Suzette Prince traveled from Atlanta to visit her son, Jordan, a first-year student majoring in environmental science. As part of Family Weekend, they took part in a service project activity in the Remington neighborhood, spending Saturday afternoon helping to remove old housewares and donated items from the Church of the Guardian Angel blocks from the Homewood campus.
"I think we should all volunteer—we should all give back," Prince said. "I've tried to instill that in Jordan all his life. What I want for him is to learn as much as he can while he's at Hopkins, but I also want him to become a person of service."
Family Weekend drew parents and siblings from around the country for the chance to spend time with their Blue Jay at Homewood. Daniel Mathew, a sophomore majoring in international studies and economics, hosted his parents, who flew in from their home in Simi Valley, California, and his sister, who visited from Florida.
"This weekend has been on the calendar for a while—this is the second year we've come, and there was no way we were going to miss it," Mathew's sister, Sarah, said.
Family Weekend was also an opportunity for parents to learn about the wide range of student services, financial aid programs, study abroad, and housing and dining options available to students. During lunch on Saturday, catered by the Fresh Food Café, families dined on pulled pork, baked chicken, purple cabbage coleslaw, a two-potato salad featuring Idaho and sweet potatoes, and tricolor glazed Malibu carrots with an apple cider gastrique. The event was designed to be zero-waste, meaning all food waste and dining materials were compostable or recyclable.
Executive Sous Chef Steve Paret said the goal of the meal was to showcase elevated but accessible food.
"We knew we'd have a lot of guests coming in from all over for Family Weekend," he said, "so we wanted to create a meal that was cohesive and inclusive and would make a lot of people happy."