Johns Hopkins to close at noon on Juneteenth, providing time for reflection

Friday marks the 155th anniversary of the end of slavery in the United States

Johns Hopkins University will close at noon on Friday, university leaders announced Wednesday afternoon, giving employees time "to reflect upon the significance of this moment in history and the difficult but essential work ahead to achieve the full promise inherent in Juneteenth."

Employees whose work involves essential operations, patient care, or COVID-19 and other essential research activities will be permitted to take a half day of leave in the next several weeks, in coordination with their supervisor.

Friday marks the 155th anniversary of Juneteenth, the day in 1865—two and a half years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation—when hundreds of thousands of enslaved people in Texas finally received news of their freedom.

"In the years since, Juneteenth celebrations have honored the strength, resilience, and independence of Black Americans in the face of slavery and enduring discrimination," JHU President Ronald J. Daniels, Provost Sunil Kumar, and Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration Daniel Ennis wrote in a message to the Hopkins community.

"The past several weeks have shown starkly the toll and trauma of racism," they added. "We understand that it is incumbent upon us not only to listen and support our Black and Brown colleagues but to take actions that embody our belief that their flourishing at Johns Hopkins truly matters."

There are several events scheduled across the university to commemorate Juneteenth and to engage participants in conversations about race and racial justice.

Events on Friday, June 19

Bloomberg School of Public Health
Juneteenth: Commemorate, Celebrate & Elevate, 11 a.m. to noon
Celebrating African-American culture and community
Speaker: Keilah A. Jacques, instructor and assistant director of SOURCE
Please register to participate

Hopkins Diaspora Employee Resource Group and Black Faculty and Students Association
Juneteenth Freedom Day: The Hidden History of Juneteenth, 1 p.m.
Featuring dramatic readings, songs of freedom, and a moment of reflection
Please register to participate

Carey Business School Black Alumni Network
Juneteenth Virtual Luncheon
"Doors" open at 11 a.m., program begins at noon
Participate live online

Berman Institute of Bioethics
Our Problem is Power, noon to 1 p.m.
A Juneteenth discussion of anti-racism by Olufemi O. Taiwo, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Georgetown University
Join via Zoom (Password: Taiwo)

Black Faculty and Staff Association
Juneteenth Celebration (Zoom Webinar), 5 to 6:30 p.m.
Participate live online

Society of Black Alumni and Peabody Society of Black Alumni
Juneteenth Virtual Happy Hour, 6 p.m.
Participate live online

Hopkins Diaspora Employee Resource Group
"Miss Juneteenth" Virtual Movie Premiere and Q&A, 5:30 p.m. (Note: The time of this event has changed. It will take place at 5:30 p.m.)
Please register to participate

Editor's note: A previously listed event co-hosted by SAIS and the SNF Agora Institute has been postponed.