Wednesday, February 5, 2020

A Day in the Life of a Hopkins-Nanjing Center Student: Brandy Darling

Student blogger, Brandy Darling, describes a typical day at the Hopkins-Nanjing Center.

I woke up earlier than usual to prepare for my presentation on the Rwandan Genocide for my Injustices, Discrimination, and Group Identity class in the study room on the first floor of the dorm building. Since it was so early, the room was empty and quiet enough for me to practice a couple of times without disturbance.

My friend and I went across the street to Momo’s (a walk-up restaurant that serves bagels and burgers) to eat egg and ham bagels. The location is convenient and the food is so delicious that it was the best way to start my day. Other nearby spots include my other breakfast favorites, such as baozi (包子) and jianbing (煎饼).

Brandy enjoys a ham and egg bagel from Momo's

We began my Injustices, Discrimination, and Group Identity class planning our course research trips. I will be participating in a research trip to Guangzhou over Fall Break where I will be researching a topic related to gender. A Chinese student then gave a presentation on the Bosnian genocide, which I followed with a presentation on the Rwandan Genocide. It was a very emotional class for me.

After class, my friend remembered she went to a restaurant nearby when she visited the HNC during Open House and decided we should eat there for lunch. I went across the road again to a restaurant near Momo’s on the main street to eat noodles with my friend and tell them about my presentation. It was my first time at this restaurant, but the menu was endless and it was filled with other local Chinese residents, including classmates from the HNC.

Brandy makes sure the noodles are not too hot to enjoy. 

After finishing lunch, I then attended a meeting between student ambassadors and student admissions workers to plan the rest of our semester and to promote collaboration between the two groups. We helped plan an Open House in November for prospective students to make sure it is a highly memorable experience like it is every year. I even visited the HNC in high school and remembered it vividly when it was time to apply.

Student ambassadors and admissions workers meet with American
Deputy Director John Urban to collaborate and share ideas for the year.

On Tuesdays and Thursdays, I have a Chinese Economic and Commercial Law class in Mandarin. It started off as my most difficult course, but when I kept up with the readings and talked to my professor during office hours, it became manageable. Today’s class is about laws regarding multinational corporations in China versus the United States. Today marks the last class discussion on corporation law; next week we will start looking at financial law.

After class, I walked to Skyways (a sandwich shop next to campus) to buy chocolate chip ice cream and oatmeal cookies. Skyways is such a convenient place to get American style cuisine, whether it’s a tuna sandwich, a brownie, or ice cream. I also find it to be a relaxing place to do homework.

A seated section at Skyways

My friends and I went to the movie theater to see the new Will Smith movie: Gemini. Because the HNC is located in the middle of the city and next to a subway station, it is very convenient to travel throughout the city and enjoy its amenities. After the movie, we ate at Burger King nearby and returned to our dorm for the evening.

My bed called my name. I laid around and caught up on American news, eventually falling asleep for the night.

Written by Brandy Darling, HNC Certificate ‘20 + Johns Hopkins SAIS MA '21