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Accessing Your E-mail Using Microsoft® Outlook®

The University of Southern California (USC) and Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences, in conjunction with USC Information Technology Services (ITS), is upgrading to a new, cloud-based e-mail service powered by Microsoft.  In order to correctly function with the new service, your e-mail account must go through a conversion process.

You may be aware that the ITS legacy Sun® Java Messenger e-mail service will be discontinued in the summer of 2014 and Microsoft Outlook will be the supported e-mail application. Over 1,000 user accounts were already converted in Spring/Summer of 2013 and the remaining accounts are being converted in the fall of 2013. As you prepare to have your e-mail account converted, please review this document as it provides general information related to the conversion process.


Why Are We Using Microsoft Outlook?

There are many reasons why Outlook was selected to be the primary e-mail client for The University of Southern California (USC). They include:

  • Increased stability and performance
  • Utilization of "cloud-based" technology while maintaining a high level of security
  • A  user-friendly e-mail client
  • Robust Mac® support via the new Outlook 2011 client for OS X®
  • Outlook Web Access (OWA) client, available for use with all major browsers
  • Access your account using your USC username and password, the same credentials you are already using for many Dornsife and campus-wide resources including MyDornsife, MyUSC, Blackboard,, VPN and Kuali
  • Improved mobile support for Android®, Blackberry®,  iOS® and Windows® Phone devices
  • 25 GB for your mailbox, 100 GB for your personal archive and up to 25 MB attachments
  • Future cross-campus calendar availability search functionality


How and When Will the Conversion Affect Me?

Over the course of the fall semester, the e-mail accounts for faculty and staff will be converted for use with the new Microsoft e-mail service. You will receive a second e-mail notifying you of your conversion date. Review the following information, as it pertains to the conversion process.

  • Verify your USC username and password by logging into To reset your password, navigate to and follow the on-screen instructions to complete the password change/reset process. If you need additional support, email or call 213-740-2775.
  • Approximately one week before your USC e-mail address is converted for use with Microsoft Outlook, you will receive an email containing the final steps you must take to complete the conversion. This email will contain instructions on Outlook Web Access (OWA) and validating the transfer to ensure the conversion correctly moved all your data. Additionally, instructions detailing how to reconfigure your mobile device to work with Microsoft Outlook will be provided.

On the day you are converted to Microsoft Outlook, you may experience interrupted access to your email account. The access interruption will, typically, occur between 5:00AM and 9:00AM. No email data will be lost due to this access interruption.