The Johns Hopkins University was founded in 1876 as part of a $7 million bequest left by Baltimore merchant Johns Hopkins to establish a research university and teaching hospital. It soon became the first modern university in America: a graduate institution offering collegiate preparation where knowledge would be assembled and created as well as taught. Today the school continues to reflect the ideals upon which the University was founded. Hopkins students learn, above all, how to think for themselves in an environment that fosters independence and creativity. Located just north of downtown Baltimore, the Homewood campus combines the best of urban and suburban surroundings. The campus encompasses 140 acres of parks, lawns, and gardens, bounded on all sides by residential areas of the city. The campus was originally the Homewood estate, built for Charles Carroll, Jr., son of the signer of the Declaration of Independence. Today, the Homewood campus serves as the University’s center for undergraduate studies, housing both the School of Arts and Sciences and the School of Engineering.