The time has finally come, it is only 8 more days until graduation! That is so scary to think about. Time really does fly when you are having fun, and the last 4 years here at USC have gone by so fast. It truly feels like I just started college yesterday. With graduation just around the corner, I can’t help but look back at some of my favorite memories from this semester, since this is my last semester ever of school! It was definitely a busy one, jam-packed with classes, projects, clubs and activities!
One of the highlights of my semester was going to Viterbi Ball with my roommate. Every year during Engineers Week (E-Week) there are a bunch of fun activities throughout the week, and the last one is always Viterbi Ball where everyone gets all dressed up and dances the night away. It’s almost like a version of prom – but just for engineers! I love seeing everyone look so fancy and the dance is always at a secret venue somewhere around Los Angeles!
Another great part of this semester was getting 2nd place at SPARKS, which is an annual competition put on by the Construction Management Association of America (CMAA). This was my first year competing and it was quite the experience! You spend literally all day with a team of 6 working to solve a construction problem. I was on the Design Build team, so we had to design and construct a medical office building in Lancaster, CA. After working all day to figure out the best solution, the next day you present your solution to the judges who are construction industry professionals. It was incredible nerve-wracking, but I’m really proud of my team!
Something else that was really exciting this semester was the Pacific Southwest Conference (PSWC), which is the annual competition for the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). I’ve talk a lot about it before, but it is basically a big competition with a bunch of different design teams, such as concrete canoe, steel bridge, environmental, surveying, sports, jeopardy, etc. It is always really fun to compete in all the different categories, and I’m proud to say our team got 3rd overall, for the 3rd year in a row! (#threepeat) This is a really exciting feat for our school because we bring a lot less people to the conference but still place much higher than everyone else. I enjoyed competing in concrete canoe, scavenger hunt, impromptu, and volleyball!
Another great part of the semester was our annual ice hockey tournament in Vegas! We get to play multiple games throughout the weekend and it is always so great to see how much the team improves. This year the tournament was sad since it was my last one and my last time being captain of the team! At our team dinner our head coach talks about each player, and then we receive our own USC jersey we get to keep. I’ll definitely be wearing mine when I play hockey next year around LA. However, I’m excited to see what the team does next year since Ellen will be the captain and Sophie will be the president. I know together they are going to do a great job!
And finally, it has been really fun to get to take part of all the traditions that seniors do here at USC! One of my favorites was the Senior Run last week, which is where all the seniors get dressed up in fun costumes and celebrate it being the last week of school. This year they had a bunch of huge inflatable race courses for everyone down McClintock and then the pool was open to go swimming in at the Lyon Center. My roommates and I wore our wolf pack shirts and thought we looked pretty cool.
Most seniors also take graduation photos to celebrate their time at USC! I think it was while we were taking these photos that it really hit me we are graduating. My roommates and I got all dressed up and took some individual and group photos around campus, and then later this week I will also be taking photos with my Building Science classmates and my fellow VSAs!
I’m also really looking forward to this summer since I have a lot of fun things planned. Right after graduation, I will be going on a short trip with Ellen and her family up in Mammoth to go hiking which I’m pumped up for since I love the outdoors. Then a week after that I will be going on a trip to Europe, which I’m extremely excited for! I’ve never left North America, so I really looking forward to flying across the ocean and visiting a whole different continent. I’m trying to see as much as I can, so I’ll be visiting Berlin, Amsterdam, Venice, Florence, Rome, Barcelona, and Madrid! A lot of cities I know, but I’m up for the challenge. Of course, as a civil engineer and building enthusiast, I’m definitely most excited to take in all the stunning architecture and visit all the famous buildings. Last semester I took a class called “History of Architecture” so I can’t wait to see all the beautiful buildings we learned about in my class in person!
After my trip, I’ll then be going home to Colorado to spend so time with my family and friends and definitely take advantage of all the fun things to do at home over the summer. It will be nice to not have to worry about school and work and just get to relax at home. And then – adulthood begins! After summer is over, I’ll be returning to Los Angeles to start a full time job with Turner Construction, which is the company I interned with last summer. Although I don’t know specifically what I will be doing yet, I know it will be a great place to work since I had such a great experience last summer as an intern.
I’ve really enjoyed getting to share my life as a student here at USC as a Viterbi Student Ambassador the past 2 years, and I can’t believe this is my last blog ever! It was definitely fun getting to share my experience and write about all the cool things I’ve done in college. Thanks for reading, and wish me luck as my life as a real adult begins soon!Meet Kelly