USC Engineering: Outside the Classroom

matt-2012 Uncategorized Leave a Comment

So I know engineers have a certain reputation for being nerdy and anti-social, but this week I’d like to take the opportunity to disprove this stereotype and talk a little bit about what I do outside of the classroom. Here at USC, I am involved in many different facets of campus life, both in and out of the Viterbi school. Here are some of the things I’m involved in and like to do with my free time.

Viterbi Student Ambassador (VSA): I was accepted to become an Ambassador for the Viterbi school this past spring. As Ambassadors, we work hand in hand with the Viterbi Admissions staff to plan events, design publications, and serve as liaisons between USC and prospective students and their families. Being involved with VSA’s is an amazing experience and a great way to make a contribution towards ensuring the future success of USC, the Viterbi school, and its students.

USC Track and Field Team: In high school, I participated in three varsity sports – water polo, soccer, and track. Initially, I was unsure if I would be able to do any one of these sports here at USC, simply because of the competitiveness of NCAA Division 1 sports. However, I was able to contact the Track and Field Coach and provide him with my marks from high school (15′ in pole vault). To make a long story short, my marks were good enough to give me a spot on the team, and I’ve been representing USC as a pole vaulter in the sport of Track and Field for the past 3 years. I have had problems with injuries (stress fracture in my shin freshman year – out for 8 weeks, and pulling the same hamstring twice sophomore year – out for 4 weeks each time), but I’m hoping that in my junior season I can finally be successful. My goals for this year are to vault 16′ and qualify for the PAC-10 Championships in late May. For those of you unfamiliar with what pole vaulting is, check out this link.

Pole Vaulting at the USC Invitational

Pole Vaulting at the USC Invitational

Greek Life: When I got to USC in the Fall of ’08, I was unsure about whether I was going to join the Greek community. However, I decided to pledge a fraternity in the Spring of ’09 and can honestly say it was one of the best decisions of my life. In addition to providing many awesome opportunities for being social (parties, fraternity and sorority philanthropy events, etc.), joining a fraternity or sorority is a great way to make tons of new friends and gain a lot of networking contacts. Being a part of a fraternity is so much more than the stereotypical party scene, and I know that my fraternity brothers will always be an important part of my life, even after college. Also, within my fraternity, I was elected the Scholarship Chair for the 2010 calendar year. For the position, I organize group study sessions, promote good study habits for the brothers, and organize events such as dinners at the house where brothers can invite teachers to get to know them better.

My fraternity brothers and I

Intramural Sports: Other than track, I also love playing some of the other intramural sports here at USC. My friends and I began playing in the flag football league our freshman year, and we have continued to play on the same team every year since. This past year, in the fall of ’09, our team actually won the Intermediate League Championships with a 4-1 record during the season and a perfect record in the playoffs. We plan on winning the Intermediate League again this year, and for our senior year, we will probably step it up to the Advanced League, which often has players who could have played football at Division 2 or 3 schools.

I am involved in many other organizations on and off campus, but I think these give you a taste of what the life on an engineer can be like outside of the classroom. We aren’t all study-aholics who sit inside all day; we are involved all over campus and do a ton of really interesting and exciting things with our free time. Anyways, til next time

Fight On!

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