One third of the high schoolers at Hopkins have a sibling who attends the school. Some siblings may feel overshadowed, but others say that they are glad to have someone close to them who shares the same experiences.
Hopkins siblings often enjoy friendly competition among one another. Younger siblings often follow in the footprints of their older siblings. Frequently they have the same teachers, regardless of their differences
in their interests.
Sarah Roberts ’20, whose older sister is Naomi Roberts ’18, said, “We don’t really have the same interests, but we’ve had a lot of the same teachers.” Naomi agreed, adding, “I don't think that there is much competition between us two. We both have different academic strengths and interests, and I think that above all else we just want to see each other succeed and be happy!” The Roberts sisters say they believe that siblings should be supportive of each other and that their different areas of expertise helps them avoid direct comparison.
Other pairs of siblings have different situations. “My brother and I have very similar academic interests. We both love science and history. I have had so many of my brother's teachers that it's hard to count,” noted Julia Tellides ’20. Her older brother, Theo Tellides ’19, agreed, mentioning “We are also both part of Model UN. I am a junior offcer and I like having power over my sister. My sister and I have had a lot of the same teachers. It's funny whenever I see her working and I notice that she's doing a lab or a project that I did the year before.”
Even siblings the same age can beneft from being at Hopkins together. Alex Weisman ‘20 said, “I like it because, if we have the same teacher, we can study together for a test or a quiz. Or, if one of us misses school, the other can flll us in on what we missed.” Alex’s twin brother, Jackson Weisman ‘20, added: “Going (to Hopkins) with your sibling can create friendly competition with grades, or doing better on assignments can drive you to do better.”
Whether or not they have similar interests, the lives of siblings at Hopkins usually intersect. They might be recognized by a teacher that the other sibling has already had, or be known as “the sibling” by their sibling’s friends. Julia Tellides confrms this experience: “People have defnitely referred to me as Theo's sister, especially kids in the Junior Class.” Chloe Sokol ’20 had a similar experience at the start of her Hopkins career: “I was basically just Allie Sokol’s sister for the frst couple of weeks freshman year.” Chloe Sokol’s sister, Allie Sokol ’18, mentioned, “I have never been called my sister's name, but usually teachers figure out that I have a younger sister.”
Most sibling report that, though they may be compared to their family members, it is rare for their names to be mixed up. “I’ve been associated with my sister, but never really called by her name. I think we look like sisters but not enough to be confused for each other,” said Sarah Roberts.
Sharing a last name can lead to some confusion. Julia Tellides remembers how “When I was in eighth grade, and my brother was a freshman, he was on the Varsity Wrestling Team. All sports teams have a roster on the Hopkins website, and I guess someone by accident wrote my name there instead of my brother's name. So for a few months, if you looked at the Varsity Boys Wrestling Page, it said that I was on the team.”
Allie Sokol had a similar experience with her older brother, Ben, who graduated from Hopkins in 2015. “Once a teacher added me by accident to their email list instead of my brother, so I was included in the classroom page for Senior Calculus when I was a freshman.” These comical incidents of sibling mix-up can sometimes be an extra source of stress if not taken with a grain of salt.
Though there are perks for being both the younger, and older sibling, it is debatable as to which family member has it better. Julia Tellides claims, “I think it is better to be the younger sibling because he goes through everything frst, so I can learn from his mistakes. It defnitely helps to have a sibling at Hopkins because they can help you. Neither of my parents remember Algebra 2, but my brother just took it, so he can help me if I have a question.” Her older brother disagreed, stating that “I think it's better to be the older sibling because whenever my sister complains about work I can just say, "Oh, you think Sophomore Year is hard, try Junior Year." She gets very mad whenever I say that.”
Sarah Roberts agrees that younger siblings have an advantage: “It was nice having my sister at Hopkins while I was starting a new school because she was able to make me feel more comfortable and give me advice. I like being the younger sibling, but there’s also been times I’ve wished that I had a little sibling.” Chloe Sokol agreed, stating she appreciates that her older sister can drive her. Allie Sokol thinks that the advantages and disadvantages balance out: “In my opinion, I think there are pros and cons to being both. It is fun having a younger sister on campus because I get to see how she experiences things that I went through during my frst couple of years at Hopkins. I think it is really helpful to have a sibling who also goes to Hopkins.”
Even with the annoying mix-ups, most siblings enjoy going to school with each other. Naomi Roberts says, “I really do love going to school with my sister! Driving to Hop together every morning and jamming out to the Jonas Brothers, or Christmas carols, or whatever it may be is always a good start to the school day. I defnitely enjoy seeing Sarah on campus, but judging by her grimaces every time I toss her a wink or blow her a kiss when we pass each other, I'm not sure that she'd say the same.”