Activities of the Board of Trustees

Trustees act in the best interest of Johns Hopkins University, and, in a typical year, the Board meets four times as a whole to discuss and make decisions on strategic issues related to the long-term success of the University. In addition to appointing and evaluating the University president, the Board sets tuition for academic programs, votes on recommendations of the president, such as tenure for faculty, and approves institutional policies. Certain topics, such as the University’s finances are discussed frequently at Board meetings. In addition, in recent years, the Board has taken on many other topics, including endorsing the Ten by Twenty, the university’s strategic plan; diversity and inclusion, which helped shape the Roadmap for Diversity and Inclusion; the university’s principles of academic freedom, as well as facility planning and overseeing the successful Rising to the Challenge campaign.

To learn more about areas of focus for the Board of Trustees, please click on a year below. (Please note that this list is a sample of the topics discussed at Board meetings and is not exhaustive.)

Academic Year 2013-2014
Innovation and Commercialization
  • The Board discussed the importance of translational activity to improving the human condition as well as how to improve the entrepreneurial eco-system at the institution.

Johns Hopkins Anchor Institution Role
  • To discuss Johns Hopkins' role in Baltimore, Trustees met with a variety of Baltimore partners, including Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, mayor of Baltimore, Patrick McCarthy, president and CEO of the Annie E. Casey Foundation, Spike Gjerde, chef and Baltimore business owner, and Diane Bell-McKoy, president and CEO of Associated Black Charities.

Campus Safety and Security
  • The Board reviewed the University’s investment in safety and security and heard a report on the increased collaboration with the Baltimore Police. The Board emphasized the importance of building a safer Baltimore through a myriad of efforts.

Faculty: Bloomberg Distinguished Professors (BDPs)
  • The Board discussed how BDPs are driving an increase in core academic collaborations across the University, as well as how they are promoting new disciplines that emerge from these cross-cutting collaborations.

Sexual Assault and Title IX
  • The Board discussed efforts to address sexual violence as well as to meet Clery Act and Title IX regulations. They heard and spoke about various protocols and procedures, including for community security alerts and compliance with Clery Act geographic boundaries. Trustees also discussed the launch of the Sexual Violence Working Group (an advisory body consisting of students, faculty and staff).

Academic Year 2014-2015
Title IX Reform
  • The Board continued their ongoing focus on the topic of Title IX, reviewing how the University was working to address campus sexual violence at Johns Hopkins.

Global Johns Hopkins
  • The Board explored the opportunities for and challenges associated with being a global institution.

APL – Divisional Deep Dive
  • Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) is a vital part of the University through its culture of public service, research collaborations, and faculty ties. The Board spent two days on the APL campus to learn about how APL’s more than 5,000 staff solves complex research, engineering, and analytical problems and plays a critical role in keeping our nation safe.

Innovation, Commercialization, and Entrepreneurship
  • Trustees discussed methods to strengthen the Johns Hopkins innovation ecosystem, including four key tactical approaches: a robust technology transfer function; education and support for faculty; a coordinated, one university approach, and the realization of the core components of the Innovation Ecosystem report.

Faculty: Recruitment and Retention
  • Trustees spoke about how to increase the capacity at Johns Hopkins to recruit and retain a strong and diverse faculty.

Academic Year 2015-2016
Government Affairs
  • In a meeting with a senior government representative, the Board discussed how Johns Hopkins can impact a broad range of issues from urban policy related to violence and poverty to solutions for public health crises, such as Zika. In addition, the federal funding landscape was a topic of discussion.

Online Learning
  • The Board engaged in discussions around the future of higher education and the interplay with the online experience.

Bloomberg School of Public Health Centennial
  • The Board acknowledged the Bloomberg School of Public Health’s one hundred year history, highlighting the achievements and impact of the school over the decades.

President Daniels’ Contract Extension
  • Two years into President Daniels’ second term as president of Johns Hopkins University, the Board voted to extend his tenure as leader of the institution through June 2024.

Academic Year 2016-2017
Campus Safety and Security
  • Baltimore Police Department (BPD) Commissioner Kevin Davis and the BPD leadership team met with the Board of Trustees. Trustees engaged in a conversation with the BPD about the Institution’s approach campus safety and security.

Live Near Your Work (LNYW)
  • Trustees spoke about this important benefit for faculty and staff of Johns Hopkins University and Health System, which assists with down payments and closing costs for homes in select neighborhoods surrounding the East Baltimore and Homewood campuses.

Diversity and Inclusion
  • Trustees endorsed the Roadmap for Diversity and Inclusion. Trustees underscored the University’s commitment to diversity, which is inextricably tied to its ongoing pursuit of excellence.

Financial Aid
  • Trustees discussed the importance of access to education. Johns Hopkins participation in the American Talent Initiative, an effort to expand the number of talented low- and moderate-income students at US undergraduate institutions, was discussed.

Academic Year 2017-2018
Free Expression
  • Trustees spoke about the mission critical importance of teaching and modeling free expression at Johns Hopkins, including academic freedom and civil discourse. They learned about the University’s review of existing policies along with the University statement of principles on academic freedom, new student programming, structured discussions and debates on campus, and seed grants for divisional projects and visiting faculty with diverse viewpoints. Trustees also were involved in the launch the SNF Agora Institute to advance civic dialogue.

PhD Education
  • Trustees reviewed the PhD Annual Report detailing graduation rates, attrition, time-to-degree, and program demographics.

Government Affairs
  • Along with the Board of Johns Hopkins Medicine, Trustees met to discuss the federal legislative and regulatory landscapes and the impact on Johns Hopkins.

Career Readiness and Planning
  • Trustees discussed student career readiness and the University’s engagement with potential employers of our graduates. The Board made recommendations for improvements.

Mental Health & Well-Being
  • Trustees discussed the final recommendations from the Task Force on Student Mental & Well-Being, including cultural changes, improvements to student care and access to providers, and the need for increased training opportunities for faculty, staff, and students related to mental health. They also heard about related initiatives underway on the East Baltimore, Peabody, and Homewood campuses.

Academic Year 2018-2019
Rising to the Challenge Campaign
  • Trustees reviewed the impact of the Rising to the Challenge Campaign on the future of Johns Hopkins -- from interdisciplinary and cross-divisional research to supporting our people, as well as how the campaign sought to address the daunting challenges facing our society and the world, as well as our home city of Baltimore.

Diversity & Inclusion
  • The University’s Chief Diversity Officer reviewed with Trustees student, faculty, and staff composition and a broad range of initiatives developed to enhance diversity and inclusion across Johns Hopkins.

Student Experience
  • Trustees met with students from various academic divisions to hear about their experiences at Johns Hopkins. Trustees engaged with University Leadership regarding undergraduate programs built to ensure students move “to and through” Johns Hopkins on an equitable basis, regardless of means or family circumstances.

555 Pennsylvania Avenue
  • Trustees explored the potential of a new Johns Hopkins’ co-location in Washington, DC, to bring together the University’s current DC-based activities and graduate programs into a single, landmark building, providing every academic division a platform from which to pursue research and educational activities in Washington.

Johns Hopkins Police Department
  • Trustees explored the development of a Johns Hopkins Police Department (JHPD) as a regional and national model designed to set a new standard for transparent, publicly accountable, community-based policing.

View the Committees of the Board of Trustees View The Honorary Degree Process

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