I cannot believe the summer is over.  When summer first started, I was dreading the three months away because I never really wanted to leave USC.  I thought I would be miserable, counting the days before I got to come back to this amazing place.  Thankfully, my job at Disney kept me busy every day, so summer actually ended up flying by.  Now I’m back at USC and it’s as if I never left!

There are so many amazing things I’m looking forward to this fall. It’s so hard to narrow it down but here are some highlights:

1.  FOOTBALL SEASON!!!:  One of my absolute favorite things to do is go to USC Football Games and watch the Trojans Fight On to Victory.  Campus is absolutely crazy before a football game – current, past, and future Trojans all gather on the quads to tailgate before the games.  Then everyone walks over to the Coliseum and as the Spirit of Troy Marching Band leads the way.  Once we get to the game, there is nothing quite like being in the student section and feeling the overwhelming pride and Trojan Spirit.  Everyone cheers and sings the fight song and gets really excited about what’s happening in the game – it’s amazing!!

2.  Sorority:  This semester, I get to live in my sorority house.  I am living in a room with 5 other girls, which is definitely going to be an adjustment.  Honestly, I am really excited to get to know the girls better and get a unique housing experience.  The great thing about living in the house is that there will constantly be people to talk to, study with, and relax with.  The only problem is going to be forcing myself to focus on getting my homework done, but thankfully there are tons of other Engineers in the house for me to keep me on track!

3.  Classes:  I am actually really excited to start my classes this semester!  I am taking Physics, Statics, Materials Science, The Holocaust in Literature and Film, and Knowledge, Explanation and the Cosmos.  I have heard excellent things about all of my professors, and my schedule has worked out so that my classes are spread out in a way that doesn’t overwhelm me.

4.  Research:  I was lucky enough to get a research position in an Electrical Engineering lab last fall, and this fall I get to continue working in the lab.  We are currently working on developing imaging that will be used to help detect Sleep Apnea in children.  This fall, I look forward to taking on an even more technically advanced role, as I will be analyzing images and trending results.

5.  Crewing a Film: Last semester, I picked up a Minor in the Cinematic Arts.  As part of the Minor, I had the opportunity to work on a couple of student films and even direct my own short film!  This fall, I have been asked to crew a student film for one of the senior level production classes.  It will be a 10 minute short film, and I will be working as part of the lighting and electric team.  I’m really excited to be able to get back on set – it’s a really fun and unique experience that has definitely taught me a lot about the film production process.

6.  California Weather:  After experiencing a summer of humidity and afternoon thunderstorms in Florida, one of the things I missed the most was the perfect California weather!  I’m looking forward to being back in the land of “75 degrees and sunny with no humidity”, where rain is just a myth.  It really does make a huge difference in everyone’s mood; I know that I personally am much happier when the sun is shining!

7.  Exploring LA:  This year, I am lucky enough to have a car with me on campus.  I am hoping that with the car, I will be able to venture into the city more often and experience more of the wonderful things Los Angeles has to offer!  I plan to visit more museums (like the Getty!), attend concerts and shows, go to the beach, find new restaurants, and go shopping!  I was able to do all of these things last year when I didn’t have my car, but with a car it will make everything easier and give me the freedom to do these things on my own schedule.

With all of these things to look forward to, I am ecstatic to be back in LA.  If it’s possible, I think this year is going to be even better than last year.  I cannot wait to meet new people, learn new material, and explore new interests and passions.  Every day I wake up and think, “I’m so lucky I get to go to school here.”; there is actually no place I would rather be.


Samantha Kaplan-2015

Samantha Kaplan-2015

Mechanical Engineering, Class of 2015, Learn more on her profile here!