USC is the Place for Me: My Decision

Steven Douglass Aerospace and Mechanical, College Applications, Free Time, Research, Sports, Steven, Study, Viterbi Life, Why USC Leave a Comment

The question most prospective students have for me: why did I choose USC? What it really boils down to is three concepts.

1. Opportunities
2. USC as a whole is a great school even beyond Viterbi
3. I could envision myself here being successful not only as a student, but a human.

Number 1: There are multiple aspects of opportunity that I will dive into.

First, a huge part of my college search involved planning for my future beyond my education. I wanted to know that when I graduated, I would have a job and that I could build a strong network of people in the industry while I was still in my undergrad years. When making my final decisions, I envisioned USC to be that place, and I have not been let down. The Trojan Family is a very real and very impactful asset that we have. I see it at all of the career fairs when most of the 100+ companies at the Viterbi career fair have USC alums. I see it when our clubs bring in industry professionals that have received their degrees from USC. I see it when I wear my SC gear in Arkansas and people yell “Fight on!” The Trojan Family sees no borders and can connect you to people in all walks of life with all different backgrounds.

Beyond that, my eyes were particularly tuned towards the undergraduate research side of things. There are so many labs including my favorite, for totally unbiased reasons, the wind tunnel and water channel, microbiology labs, fabrication labs, optics labs, etc. You name it, there is probably a way to do it here. But, the most important thing was to be able to get involved early. If you want it, go for it. Some labs might not have positions available, but if you are dedicated and show enough ambition, professors can direct you towards labs that have openings.

Number 2: Want something more than engineering? Go for it.

At most engineering schools that I was looking into, there was not much offered outside the school of engineering. I wanted to be somewhere that, if I decided to double major/minor, whatever school I got the extra degree from within the college was reputable. Even without the minor or double major, I can say that I have taken classes from Marshall(business) or Thornton (music/performance) that are taught from very strong schools.

Number 3: Happiness.

I have touched on this in some of my other blogs, but what was REALLY important was finding a place where I could be human. Not just a student. Not just a researcher. Human. Being human to me meant that I would be able to be happy. I knew going into this phase of my life that college was going to be extremely difficult no matter where I went, but that I could be more successful if I was happy. Living in Los Angeles surrounded by major sports teams, great weather, beaches, and a cultural mixing pot like no other, I envisioned myself having the environment to succeed. I could see myself hammocking, playing baseball, playing spikeball, going on hikes, going to the pier for a beach day, boarding around campus, and waking up in the morning knowing how lucky I am to have the opportunity to be where I am. That feeling is nothing I felt anywhere else and ultimately, why I chose USC.

About the Author

Steven is a sophomore studying Aerospace Engineering. Click above to find out more!


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