- Class: Sophomore
- Major: Journalism
- Gender: M
- High School: Santa Fe Prep
- Transfer Student: N
The best thing about USC is the diversity of options. Because of USC's location and array of programs, you can really redefine yourself and spend your time doing what turns you on. Into sports? There's a club for you to play in, the Staples Center and Dodgers Stadium less than five miles away for pro sports and some of the greatest collegiate athletics in the country. Into music? The marching band's been featured on a platinum album, visiting bands play free shows for students on a regular basis (Mos Def, The Fray, Hot Hot Heat) and the student orchestra was conducted by John Williams last semester. Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. The school is the perfect size. Big enough so that you're always meeting new people, but small enough so that walk past people you know all the time. The school pride at USC is incredible. Students proudly wear the Cardinal and Gold, especially on Gameday. There are some problems about USC though. There is no real "college town" surrounding USC. Sure, there are some college restaurants, but generally once you leave campus you're in some pretty dangerous territory. Other frequent complaints are that the school has a tendency to nickel and dime its students for every little thing it can. Food prices on campus are outrageous, and hours on restaurants can make it tough to live on campus during the weekends. The Trojan meal plan is a complete scam. Textbook costs at the book store are equally ridiculous. DPS steals more student bikes than actual bike thiefs do. The athletics department doesn't seem to care about students at all. Sometimes students can be apathetic about any sport that isn't Football or Men's Basketball, even when the team wins a National Championship (see Women's Soccer, Men's Water Polo). Despite all of this, I wouldn't trade anything or any other college for USC. I friggin' love this place.
Class sizes at USC vary quite a bit, especially with GE classes, but every class is taught by a professor and class sizes tend to average 20 or below. Some classes have great side benefits. For instance, my video game class (ITP 280) gave us a preview of Smash Bros. Brawl a month before it came out, and had Jeffrey Kaplan (WoW lead designer) speak for a class. The great thing about USC is that they have a class for every passion. I love media and I love sports... voila, COMM 383 is there. I love being spontaneous... THTR 122 anyone? The great thing about Annenberg School and specifically the journalism program is that the professors/teachers are working professionals in the field. I've had a CBS reporter and an LA Times reporter teach me at various points. These teachers offer great insights into the field and how to be successful in it. Also, the classrooms in Annenberg are by far the most comfortable/spacious/wired of any at USC that I've been in.
USC is known as a very diverse university, but I think this is a fairly deceptive tag used by the university as a marketing tool. Yes, in terms of raw numbers, USC is one of the most diverse schools in the country. There are large amounts of Latino, Asian, and Black students. There are plenty of International students. The problem, however, and why I think the diversity at USC is overrated, is that these groups are very socially segregated. Students tend to stick with their own racial or ethnic group. This is furthered by student organizations that tend to encourage this separation and labeling. There is some intermingling, yes, but the groups are more separate than people would like to admit. 50% of USC students are Californians, statistically and from my experience. The other 50% are from a ridiculous amount of different places. Students tend to lean slightly left. There are very active groups on both the left wing and right wing side though.
The Best Things
The limitless possibilities and Trojan Family
The Worst Things
The constant nickel and diming by the entire university