Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Day in the Life of a Hopkins-Nanjing Center Student: Hope Parker

Student blogger Hope Parker, MAIS ’20, describes a typical day at the Hopkins-Nanjing Center.

Now that I have been in Nanjing for a few months, I have settled into my classes and a weekly routine. Here is what a normal day looks like for me at the Hopkins-Nanjing Center:

6:30 a.m. Go for a run
I start the morning with a run on the Nanjing University track or by going to the Hopkins-Nanjing Center fitness center. As the weather has gotten colder, fewer people have been on the track. Luckily, this morning lots of people were out walking, running, and dancing.

Nanjing University’s track in the morning

8:00 a.m. International Political Economy (IPE)
On Wednesdays I have an early start with my IPE class. This week we have been finishing up topics on maritime issues and trade, and applying theories we studied at the beginning of the semester to events and policies. Today we focused on different states’ policies in the Arctic.

9:50 a.m. International Relations of East Asia
Our class focuses on Northeast Asian relations, particularly on the Korean Peninsula. In our last class we all presented on our final paper topics. Since several students are studying cooperation mechanisms in East Asia, our professor discussed fundamental features and barriers to cooperation in East Asia.

12:00 p.m. Lunch

Around noon I head to lunch at the Hopkins-Nanjing Center cafeteria. Lunch is probably one of the busiest times in the cafeteria because everyone goes to eat right after class. Professors and students catch up with one another and continue class discussions over lunch.

A study space in the Hopkins-Nanjing Center Library

12:30 p.m. Homework
This semester I only have morning classes, which means I usually start preparing for other classes after lunch each day. Today I have to go over my readings for tomorrow’s law class. We just started a unit on internet law and how cyberspace activities could be governed internationally. Once I finish, I start on readings for Friday morning’s International Political Economy class.

There are lots of places to study on campus. Sometimes I’ll study in my room, but there are also various spaces in the library for students to study. If I feel that I need an extra quiet space, I usually go to my study carrel. Master’s students can get a carrel to study in, which is a room that is shared by three students, each assigned their own individual desk. The carrels are available for students to study any time—day or night.

Professor Andrew Mertha giving a lecture on China’s relationship with Cambodia

7:00 p.m. Lecture
Each Wednesday afternoon from is blocked out for visiting lectures at the Hopkins-Nanjing Center—often professors from universities in China and abroad. Tonight we heard from the new China Studies director at Johns Hopkins SAIS, Professor Andrew Mertha, talk about his research on Chinese-Cambodian relations. Lots of students were excited to hear about China’s relationship with Cambodia from an expert in the field.

8:30 p.m. Moot Court

I am a member of the Jessup International Law Moot Court team. Our group usually meets at least once per week to discuss, research, and write, but I also try to do some work on the case each day. Often that means reading about other cases, then adding to my written arguments.

9:45 p.m. Wind Down
At the end of the day my roommate and I are usually both back in our room. Before we go to sleep, we talk about different things that we did that day, as well as what we’re doing later in the week.

Written by Hope Parker, MAIS ‘20