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This past summer was the first time I stayed in Baltimore after the school year ended. Many of my friends have stayed before, pursuing research or taking summer classes. I heard amazing things from them all as they shared memories of hangouts with beautiful Baltimore sunsets, annual summer events, and the many food adventures. Below is my experience in Baltimore, which made me love the city even more!

From June to mid-August, I was mainly doing research through the Center for AIDS Research, which was called the Baltimore HIV/AIDS Scholars Program. It was my first time doing clinical research, and I loved it! From shadowing to administering surveys to transplant candidate waitlists, the summer program gave me a large breadth of experiences, which truly shows how multifaceted research can be. Not only was this an educational experience, but I loved it so much that I decided to continue with it throughout the school year! My mentors and supervisors were all incredible, and I gained so many skills that are learned only outside the classroom setting. I even got to present my research at the CFAR Annual Meeting!

When I wasn’t on the medical campus doing research, I was able to attend the annual summer events. From HONFest (“HON” as in “honey”) in June to Artscape in July, I loved exploring more of Baltimore through food, art, and music. Artscape, in particular, was incredible! With exhibits and shops from local artists, the streets were packed and alive with energy!

Some other fun weekend trips consisted of exploring more of Baltimore. It was the first time I went to the Walters Art Museum, which was free and only a short shuttle ride (via the JHMI shuttle) away. Other “shout-out” worthy activities consisted of Restaurant Week in Baltimore – where many restaurants offer special prices for lunch and dinner – and the easy trips to Philadelphia and DC!

It was my first summer in Baltimore, and I fell in love with the city. Being surrounded my friends who stayed, exploring new places, and trying new foods was an amazing experience. Whether it be doing research, an internship, or taking classes, I highly recommend staying in Baltimore for a summer! Baltimore seems to have a different glow and sparkle during the hot summer days and warm summer nights!