10.25.18: Science Policy Town Hall

This panel-style event provided graduate students and staff the space to engage with faculty experts on critical science policy issues ahead of the 2018 midterm elections. Attendees and panelists discussed women's health and reproductive rights, led by Dr. Diane Horvath-Cosper, the director of Whole Women's Health of Baltimore; climate change, led by Dr. Tom Burke, former EPA Deputy Assistant Administrator and Science Adviser; and the opioid crisis, led by Dr. Travis Rieder from the Berman Institute of Bioethics. City Councilwoman Shannon Sneed also appeared on the panel and discussed efforts she has been involved in across Baltimore to support the environment and women’s health.

4.14.18: March for Science

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Celebrate Science!

Johns Hopkins Science Policy collaborated with our friends at SACNAS for the 2018 March for Science. In preparation we held a poster-making happy hour and headed down to D.C. together for the rally and march. We were inspired by the creativity and passion on display. Through our actions in the lab, at our institutions, and through our public advocacy we can create a more equitable and just world.

See this lovely write-up by Allison McCague for the American Society of Human Genetics! http://www.ashg.org/education/newsletter/201805_newthismonth.shtml

3.14.18: National School Walkout for Gun Policy Reform


On March 14, 2018, JHSPG and Doctors For America organized over 100 Hopkins affiliates to walk out of their classrooms and laboratories in solidarity with the Parkland shooting survivors and in support of federally-funded gun violence prevention research. JHSPG President Richard Sima and the Director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research, Dr. Daniel Webster, delivered remarks and the attendees observed a moment of silence.  In the days following the walkout, JHSPG organized a poster-making happy hour and a Hopkins contingent to participate in the March for Our Lives in D.C.

Members of the Hopkins community gathered together with students across the country to say #ENOUGH to gun violence. We stand in solidarity with the victims of gun violence and call for the funding of gun policy research.

Nov - Dec 2017: Tax Reform Advocacy 


The details of House Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (H.R. 1) threatened graduate students nationwide by removing exemptions for tuition waivers. The details very from case to case, but had the original bill passed, Hopkins graduate students would have seen their federal tax burden increase from ~9% of take-home income to ~38% of take-home.

Throughout November and December the Johns Hopkins Science Policy Group help several Advocacy events to lobby against H.R. 1. Students came together to write letters, send emails, and call the offices of Senators and Representatives from 9 different states. 

4.22.17 : March for Science


Members of the Hopkins community came together to join in the March for Science on Earth Day 2017. In addition to joining the thousand of marchers in cold DC drizzle, our community came together for two other events.

Prior to marching we collaborated with sustainability groups to hold an earth day happy hour and to science poster-making party.

The following week students, faculty, and post-docs met in a town-hall style forum to discuss our experiences, and prioritize and plan our follow-up actions. 

3.26.17 : Congressional Postcard Party



Our first official group event took place on March 16th, 2017. A total of 22 people stopped by to write a total of 84 postcards to 11 states. We wrote our representatives to either thank then for the support of science funding and/or the Affordable Care Act (ACA), or to urge them to stand up for them.

Writing a postcard doesn’t take too much time. Below you will find some of the templates that we used in this event. To easily find the contact info of your representative please use the http://www.govtrack.us website as a good starting place.

You can use an already made postcard, or you can make your own with a simple index card. On one side you address it to the person of interest allotting enough space for a postage stamp (postcard stamps run about 34 cents right now- 2017). On the other side, you can write your message.

Your message can follow a script if you don’t know what to say, or you can consider sharing a personal story, which can increase the impact of your message. Including your zip code or stating that you are a constituent from your city (you don’t have to provide your full address if you don’t want to) can also really increase the impact of your message.


Hi, my name is [NAME] and I’m a constituent from [CITY, ZIP].

I’m writing to urge Governor [NAME] do everything in their power to resist attempts to institute a per capita funding structure for Medicaid. Medicaid is a cost-effective program that provides millions of people with essential healthcare coverage.


Hi, my name is [NAME] and I’m a constituent from [CITY, ZIP].

I’m writing to oppose the American Health Care Act’s provisions to roll back federal funding for Medicaid expansion and institute a per capita Medicaid funding structure. Medicaid is a cost-effective program that provides millions of people with essential healthcare coverage.