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University of Southern California: A Comprehensive Look

University of Southern California: A Comprehensive Look

Discover what makes USC special, from academic excellence to the lively local area. Find out the top things to do at and near USC. Team


3 min read

July 20, 2023

The University of Southern California (USC) is a renowned private research university located in the heart of Los Angeles, California. Spread over a sprawling campus area of 226 acres, it sits in the vibrant and diverse neighborhood of Exposition Park, brimming with rich culture and history.

Founded in 1880, USC has grown into an international hub of scholarship, creativity, and innovation, and it is home to approximately 20,000 undergraduate and 27,500 graduate students. It boasts a faculty-to-student ratio of 9:1, which promotes a close-knit, interactive learning environment.

The iconic Trojan mascot is synonymous with the University of Southern California.

History and Excellence

Established by a group of Los Angeles citizens, USC was the city's first private university. Despite its modest beginnings, USC has been forward-thinking from the start, embracing coeducation at a time when many schools were single-gender institutions.

USC is well-known for its programs in Business, Cinematic Arts, Engineering, Music, and the Social Sciences. Its School of Cinematic Arts is particularly esteemed, producing many successful Hollywood professionals and having an intimate connection with the entertainment industry. Furthermore, the USC Marshall School of Business consistently ranks among the top undergraduate business schools in the nation, renowned for its focus on entrepreneurship and international business.

USC is not just an academic powerhouse, though. It has a long-standing tradition of athletic excellence. The Trojans, USC's athletic teams, have claimed numerous NCAA championships, particularly in football and water polo. Also, the university has produced more Olympians than any other university in the United States.

Student Life and Local Attractions

USC's location in Los Angeles provides a plethora of opportunities for students to explore the city. The campus is well-serviced by public transportation with the Metro Expo Line's Expo Park/USC station directly adjacent to the campus, connecting students to downtown LA, Santa Monica Beach, and many points in between. Many students also opt for biking due to USC's bike-friendly environment.

USC's dining services offer a wide array of food options that cater to various dietary preferences. From vegan and vegetarian choices to gluten-free and halal options, there's something for everyone. Plus, Los Angeles' famous food scene is just a short walk or metro ride away, with options ranging from gourmet food trucks to high-end dining.

For off-campus activities, students can visit the nearby LA Live entertainment complex, which houses restaurants, concert venues, and the Grammy Museum. For those interested in arts and culture, the Exposition Park, home to the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, the California African American Museum, and the California Science Center, is a stone's throw away from the campus.

Sports fans can revel in the thrill of live games at the nearby Banc of California Stadium, home to LAFC, and the iconic Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, which hosts USC's home football games and has been the site for two Olympic Games.

Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum is an athletic venue that hosts a wide variety of events throughout the year.

Top 5 Things to Do at and Near USC

Attend a USC Football Game

Watching a Trojans football game at the historic Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum is an unparalleled experience. The energy and spirit of the crowd create a unique atmosphere that shouldn't be missed. Whether you're a sports enthusiast or not, the tradition, pageantry, and sheer energy make this an unforgettable experience.

Explore the Exposition Park

Right next to USC's campus, Exposition Park houses some of the city's finest cultural and scientific institutions. Spend a day exploring the Natural History Museum, the California Science Center, or the California African American Museum. Don't forget to stop by the beautiful Rose Garden while you're there.

There's plenty of natural beauty surrounding USC's campus, making it a great place to walk around.

Take a Class at the School of Cinematic Arts

Whether you're studying film or not, try taking a class at USC's School of Cinematic Arts. The school offers a variety of classes open to all students and provides a unique opportunity to learn about film history, criticism, or even try your hand at filmmaking.

Stroll through the USC Fisher Museum of Art

The USC Fisher Museum of Art, the first museum established in Los Angeles, has an impressive collection of art dating back to the 16th century. It also hosts regular exhibitions, lectures, and workshops.

Experience the LA Food Scene

Make sure to explore the culinary delights of Los Angeles. USC is a short distance away from some of the city's most exciting food locales like the Grand Central Market, a food lover's paradise with vendors serving up dishes from around the world.

The Grand Central Market is an expansive location with all kinds of food options to pick up.

USC's unique blend of academic excellence, athletic tradition, cultural richness, and the charm of Los Angeles provides students with endless opportunities for growth, fun, and memorable experiences. The experiences you have here, both on and off-campus, are sure to shape your college years and beyond, making your time at USC unforgettable.

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