Meet Natalie

Computer Science Business Administration
Class of ’19


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Hi there! I’m Natalie. I’m a junior from Dallas, Texas studying Computer Science and Business Administration with a Minor in Dance. On campus, I am involved in research with Dr. Hao Li’s Vision and Graphics Lab at the USC Institute for Creative Technologies. In addition, I research at the USC Choreographic Institute, a collaboration between the Kaufman School of Dance and various other schools on campus. I am also a Freshman Academy Coach and a Course Producer for CSCI 201. During the summer after my freshman year, I interned at Northrop Grumman as a Software Engineer. This past summer, I developed software for Liquid Galaxy through Google Summer of Code. For this project, I used Google Earth technologies to develop a reminiscence therapy for the elderly. I am excited to continue this project during the school year. In my free time, I like to take dance classes, go to the beach with my friends, and design websites and mobile apps. Read on to learn more about my #ViterbiLife!




My Favorite Places in LA

Involvements

Performing research on campus at the Vision and Graphics Lab through the USC Institute for Creative Technologies (ICT) is such a treat. I love how the lab focuses on bringing art into advanced computer graphics. The lab is so fascinating, and the PhD leads welcome my ideas about the intersection of dance and computer graphics. ICT is pushing the future of technology; I’m so glad I get to be a part of it.
As a Dance Minor in the Kaufman School of Dance, I’m automatically eligible for various programs in the dance school. I regularly perform in shows for my technique classes, and, most recently, I performed in a flash mob in front of Tommy Trojan to encourage other USC students to Dance On! It’s also great to meet other Dance minors who major in diverse fields throughout the university because it gives us opportunities to collaborate on projects.
Each week, Young Life hosts fun events ranging from pool parties to rollerskating nights. Young Life is a place where I can completely be myself and meet friends that care about every aspect of my life. I create some of my closest friendships at Young Life because of the many chances to bond over service weekends, hikes, and dance parties!

My Major at USC: Computer Science and Business Administration


My Favorite Classes
BUAD 302 is so practical. I learned more about myself as both a person and a professional. I found confidence in myself as a speaker, an important skill for a career in the business world. My teamwork skills grew tremendously as well. Because of BUAD 302, I feel ready to take on workplace challenges and ethical dilemmas in the future.
I am a creative person, and I love the artistic side of software engineering. I enjoyed CSCI 201 because I learned methods of front-end design and development. I built a website and developed a sports-related web application with my team members. After this class, I felt like I had a solid foundation in full-stack software development.
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Fun Facts

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My Tips for You

Recommendation Letters

When you pick a teacher to write a recommendation letter for you, don’t pick the teacher who has seen you succeed at everything. Pick one who has seen you fail or struggle through the coursework. That way, he or she can attest to how you can attack challenges and push yourself beyond your comfort zone, which is a valuable personal characteristic to highlight.

Application Essays

Write your essays as if you’re talking to your best friend. Don’t be afraid to let your silly or creative personality shine through. For example, in one of my essays, I mentioned how I have fangirled over Zac Efron my entire life, and I even admitted to color coding my book shelf in middle school. Rule of thumb: If you think it’s something an admissions representative wouldn’t care about, it’s probably something they would love to know about you and your personality, so you should write about it!

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Two Truths and a Lie

Can you guess which of these are true or false?
True! My mom grew up on a lake and learned to boat when she was 12, so she taught me how to navigate a boat when I was 14, two years before I got my driver’s license.
True! I grew up in Texas, so owning cowboy boots is a must. Sometimes I like to wear them on campus and see my friends’ reactions!
False. Having trained as a dancer my entire life, I like to joke around that I can’t play “any sport with a ball.” I can kill it on the dance floor, but my hand-eye coordination is pretty embarrassing, making it difficult to be good at sports that involve throwing and catching a ball.

My Favorite Show & Movie

  • Gilmore Girls is about the adventures of a mom and daughter who are absolute best friends living life in a small town in Connecticut. I love this show so much because Rory reminds me of myself; she is a spunky, book-loving nerd with a love for the little things in life.

  • The Great Gatsby…Two words: Leo DiCaprio. I have always thought it would be so cool to live in the 1920s. The extravagant parties look so fun, and I love the flapper girls and the old-fashioned automobiles. It’s crazy to think that in just 3 years, this time period will be 100 years in the past.