Our Residencies

Science Policy, Politics, and Funding
Washington, DC 2014

Discount Housing Available

An exciting, one-week Residency for Science Writers, Sponsored by the M.A. in Writing Program at Johns Hopkins.

Our onsite Residency course for writers interested in the policy and politics of science, medicine, and technology opens for registration on March 17, with the one-week course planned June 15-21 in Washington.

Science writers thrive on the latest research or laboratory revelations, but advancement in any scientific, medical, or technological field relies in part on who gets money, how that money follows government or industry policy, and whether it’s influenced by competition, controversy, and politics.

To learn more, science writing students and others will join the Johns Hopkins Master of Arts in Writing Program for an intense, eye-opening week in and around the nation’s capital. We’ll meet with officials from the White House, Congress, federal agencies, and private groups, we’ll trace how policy and funding decisions result from their interaction. Besides Capitol Hill, our targeted visits include the National Institutes of Health, the National Academy of Sciences, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. We plan our regular Residency features of student readings, exciting field trips, special guest luncheons, craft exercises, and meetings with prominent reporters and writers in the areas of science, health, and technology. We also plan to visit several iconic science writing sites, including National Geographic and Science magazines. The goal is for participants to leave the Residency with greater understanding and many writing ideas. Along the way, everyone has a chance to experience the best of Washington – from monuments and museums, to some of the nation’s best entertainment and excitement. Some Residency events will be held at the main Hopkins DC Center at vibrant Dupont Circle, convenient to the Metro subway system.

Residency participants will be of all ages and backgrounds: Graduate students in the Hopkins Writing Program Science-Medical Writing Concentration, Writing Program alumni, students in other fields, and a limited number of outside writers and editors interested in the subject matter. Full graduate credit is available for all through Johns Hopkins University, an international center for research, medicine, and writing. Discount housing will be offered, with attendees encouraged to invite family members or guests to enjoy this world-class city before, during, or after the weeklong course.

The conference cost for graduate or post-graduate credit is $2698, the regular 2014-15 tuition for a full course in the MA in Writing Program at Hopkins. Graduate credit attendees also pay a $200 conference fee. A limited number of non-credit slots are available for $1300 each, plus a $100 fee. While some conference reading will be provided, participants buy their own books in advance, plus travel to and from Washington. The discount housing and meals will be extra, as announced later in March.

The faculty for Science Policy, Funding, and Politics will be journalist Melissa Hendricks, Faculty Advisor for Science Writing, and writer and editor David Everett, Writing Program Director. The Residency lasts from Sunday afternoon on June 15 through the following Saturday evening, June 21. The Writing Program’s previous residencies were on the front lines of medicine at world-famous Johns Hopkins Hospital in 2013 and, in 2012, in the field with coastal and ocean researchers in Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park in Maine.

How to Register: Writing Program students register for the course in the usual online manner beginning March 17; alumni, outside writers, and editors, and others will use a special application form available in April. For more information and to be added to the information list, please email sciencewriting@jhu.edu or Faculty Advisor Melissa Hendricks. Click here for more information about science writing and the M.A. or Graduate Certificate.

Students interested in full graduate credit register for 490.691.51 Science Policy, Funding, and Politics; those interested in non-credit and its lower costs should register for the section marked 490.716.92.

Travel Information

Visit the Advanced Academic Student Travel page for information about waiver, liability, and emergency contact forms, and travel and health insurance.
Students traveling to Washington, DC must fill out the following forms:
Student field trip release and waiver of liability form
Emergency Contact Form

We hope to see you in June!

The Residency

MA in Science Writing & Graduate Certificate in Science Writing

CanOur 2013 Residents meets with Nobel winner Peter Agredidates for the MA in Science Writing must complete at least one of their nine courses through an onsite Residency. A Residency is optional for Graduate Certificate students. Students who want more face-to-face interaction can take a second Residency with advisor approval. While new Residencies are being developed, they include:

Medicine in Action at Johns Hopkins Hospital: A week inside the world-famous hospital in Baltimore to experience the front lines of contemporary medical care and research. This residency in 2013 included sessions with winners of the Nobel and Pulitzer prizes.

Science Policy, Politics, and Funding in Washington, DC: A week focusing on federal research, policy, and regulation, plus the interaction of the scientific community with government. Students meet with science writers and visit Capitol Hill, federal agencies, and association offices in and around Washington. This residency will occur June 15-21, Science Writer Kate Horowitz tries a medical procedure in a training lab2014.

Science in Action: This week-long Washington, DC, and Baltimore course spotlights active research at NASA, National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Standards and Technology and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, plus federal agencies such as EPA, Energy and Homeland Security — and Hopkins labs in space exploration, nanotechnology and the famed Applied Physics Laboratory.

Florence, Italy, and Bar Harbor, Maine: The sites of previous summer writing conferences for the MA in Writing Program, Florence and Bar Harbor are being considered for future Science Writing Residencies if financing can be arranged. In 2012, Science Writing students spent ten days covering coastal research in Maine as part of the “In the Field” course. The Florence sessions focused on the history of science at the famous city’s many world-class science museums and scientific historic sites. The Italy and Maine options are uncertain at this time.

For Residencies, Science-Medical Writing students pay for travel and lodging, with discount housing usually available. A Residency course tuition is the same as any other course in the Science Writing Program, plus a Residency/conference fee of $150-500, depending on location and activities. Students choose the location and topic for their Residency.