So one thing I haven’t talked too much about so far and probably should (because it’s of intense interest to incoming students) is that I am a Freshman Academy Coach (more “official” info here). I’ve attached the picture from the website of all of us below. This may seem overwhelming and takes a bit to explain, so let me take a step back first.

If you are admitted to USC and subsequently the Viterbi School, you will take a class your first semester known as Engineering Freshman Academy. This class is designed to acclimate you to the rigorous academic expectations of being an engineer, get you excited about engineering, show you what engineering is (since I doubt you took engineering classes in high school), network you with fellow Freshman engineers, and, most of all, to have some fun with engineering! The class has about 30-40 students, a Professor, and two coaches/mentors.

The professor will be a Viterbi professor and the Coaches are upperclassmen engineering students. As such, we are there to help mentor/coach our Freshman — we’re there for questions, support, comments, help… basically anything you need! As such, each week during class we do different fun activities and help the students — we’ve made paper helicopters, paper bridges, done ethics presentations, and even focused on some of the NAE Engineering Grand Challenges (view these here — very cool!). Myself and my co-coach (Stacy, whom is not an Ambassador) work with the students to talk about their classes, social life, and other life problems while performing fun engineering tasks. It is very fun and rewarding 🙂

I guess my point here is to highlight this great resource Viterbi provides to you at your first semester at USC. Of course, this is only one of many resources Viterbi provides – VARC (Viterbi Academic Resource Center; here); CED (Center for Engineering Diversity; here); VCS (Viterbi Career Services; here) – just to name a few others. Viterbi is here to help you as a new undergraduate engineering student in many ways and has so many resources you can use to your advantage. Freshman Academy is just one of the many ways Viterbi prepares you for college and ultimately the real world of engineering! 🙂

In the end, I love being an Academy Coach and getting the chance to impart some of my personal experiences and knowledge upon them so they don’t make the same mistakes I did (and make the same right choices too!). Viterbi is a great place to be with an arsenal of resources at your fingertips that will make you incredibly successful during your time at USC.

Off to sleep…


Freshman Academy Coaches!