Summit Highlights: Johns Hopkins University

Future medical professionals of the world get a leg-up at JHU.


Speaking of Johns Hopkins University, founded in 1876, Mark Twain once exclaimed: “The public is sensitive to little things, and they wouldn’t have full confidence in a college that didn’t know how to spell ‘John.’” The man Johns Hopkins — who shares his name with the university — was given his great-grandmother’s maiden name as his first. This explains the extra ‘s’ about which Twain famously quipped. Despite Twain’s teasing, Johns Hopkins has become a world-class institute of research and higher learning.

In fact, Woodrow Wilson, the 28th President of the United States and the only president to hold a PhD, is among the university’s alum. He and 35 other Johns Hopkins alum and faculty researchers are also Nobel Prize recipients in fields like Peace, Medicine and Chemistry. Indeed, as of this year, Johns Hopkins is ranked 2nd in the nation (behind only Harvard University) for medical research schools. It is a place of innovation in the health care field and of academic excellence, which makes it the perfect host for Ambassador Leaders’ Medicine and Health Care Summits.

As you approach the Johns Hopkins campus from Charles Street, you’ll see a large sign bearing the university’s name. Once students are in their teams, this is a great spot to gather for group photos commemorating the start of the Summit. Behind the sign, you’ll see a large grassy area. Known as The Beach, this is the most popular recreation spot for students to unwind during any downtime. Though you won’t find sandy shores, you’re still likely to see students lounging, playing games, and taking part in plenty of other activities here. Be sure to check it out!

Ambassador Leaders at JHU

Just across the street is Charles Village, the nearby neighborhood serving the university. The Barnes and Noble in Charles Village has a Starbucks and a ton of Johns Hopkins swag. It’s a great shopping spot for students hoping to pick up branded clothing, pennants, and coffee mugs to take home. Right next door is Insomnia Cookies. This shop is a student favorite for it’s delicious cookies served up all day and night (hence the name)! Between activities, this is a perfect place to drop in for a sweet treat as a team.

Speaking of activities, students attending our Medicine and Health Care Summits will stay busy exploring facets of the health care field. One way they do that is with a visit to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Headquartered just outside of Washington D.C., the NIH campus houses 27 separate institutes or research centers, many of which specialize in a specific part of the human body. Students receive a driving tour of the expansive campus and also get to see the National Library of Medicine. There, they’ll meet individuals who work at NIH and learn how they got to be where they are today.

Students will also spend one full day touring the nation’s capital! Taking a charter bus from Baltimore south to Washington D.C., students will visit the Capitol Building and tour the National Mall. Comfortable walking shoes are a must! Students will see the famous monuments and memorials like the Lincoln Memorial and the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial on a walking tour of the Mall. This day is a good one for epic photos with some of the most iconic landmarks in the United States as a backdrop. For newcomers to Washington D.C., this is a truly remarkable opportunity to connect with U.S. history and see current-day governance in action.

Ambassador Leaders Medicine Summit

Back at Johns Hopkins, each team will also complete a patient case study. Each team’s teacher leader will be given a medical mystery. The leader will know what ails them, but their students will not. It’s a race against the clock for students to put all their learning to the test and figure out a diagnosis. By the end of the Summit, they will present their findings to their peers. This project is a fun, hands-on way to learn important skills — completing patient interviews, researching symptoms, and determining a treatment plan — that individuals working in the medical field use everyday.

After showcasing their new expertise during their presentations, students will get the chance to cut loose with a visit to Baltimore’s Inner Harbor and cut a rug during a Baltimore Harbor cruise. These final celebratory activities give students one last chance to pick up souvenirs at the shops around the Inner Harbor and spend time with their new friends.

Don’t miss our next look at the Medicine and Health Care Summits at Johns Hopkins University. We’ll be exploring the many experiential workshops students complete during the course of their Summit. From CPR to suturing, our students learn so much and have fun too!


By Corie Bales

Corie is the Academic Affairs Manager of Ambassador Leaders. As a lifelong educator and avid traveler, she believes in empowering students and teachers to learn and lead through experiential education.