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Ara IntroHi, all! My name is Ara, and I’m a sophomore here at USC. Born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana, I have spent a year and some change falling in love with Los Angeles, USC, and especially USC Dornsife. Although I entered my freshman year undecided, I have since committed to studying International Relations Global Business, an interdisciplinary major composed of classes in both Dornsife and the Marshall School of Business. I am also double minoring in Spanish and Psychology & Law, and I hope to one day go to law school.

As a southern girl looking to expand her horizons, I entered my freshman year certain that I wanted to do everything from Medieval Literature to Political Science – maybe with a computer science minor thrown in. The beauty of USC Dornsife is that I had the opportunity to try all of these things. At the end of the day, with a passion for human rights and international affairs, I settled on IRGB.

However, my studies aren’t the only gift USC Dornsife has given me. This summer I had the privilege of studying nuclear nonproliferation and international security in Washington, D.C. through a Dornsife program called Problems Without Passports. I watched diplomats debate Iranian sanctions at The Atlantic Council, had coffee with the former US Ambassador to Pakistan, and even watched Hilary Clinton deliver a speech at the Kennedy Center on women’s empowerment. In the future, I hope to study abroad in Spain, conduct research with a professor, and take full advantage of the plethora of opportunities USC Dornsife has to offer. Though not a Trojan by blood, I have truly been converted to the unique, vibrant, and absolutely captivating world of USC. Fight on!

Erin Mills

Erin IntroHi, everyone! My name is Erin Mills, and I am a USC Dornsife sophomore majoring in Applied Math and minoring in Spanish. Coming to USC last year was a huge change from my hometown, Jefferson City, Missouri. However, the change could not have been better for me. In just one year here I have been able to become involved in a wide array of activities ranging from a professional leadership fraternity to data science research. Opportunities such as these have allowed me to explore my interests and become more self-aware at the same time.

I feel so lucky to be able to go to a school with so many opportunities both in and out of the classroom and share them with you. I even studied abroad in Madrid through the Spanish department this summer! Dornsife has provided me the opportunity to work hard but also to enjoy the work I do. I am looking forward to seeing more of the world and hope to spend a semester at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland. Traveling is one of my greatest interests, and I aim to incorporate it in both my personal and professional life.

My USC experience has just begun, and I am excited to see what the future brings. From what I can imagine, each year will just provide more opportunity than the next.

Hello world!Yasmeen Intro

My name is Yasmeen Serhan, and I’m one of the newest additions to USC’s Dornsife Ambassador family. I’m currently a junior studying international relations with a minor in French at the happiest place on Earth.

No, Disneyland doesn’t give out diplomas.

Sure USC doesn’t have rides and by no means is it anything close to the magic kingdom (though the clock in Hahn Plaza sure makes it seem like it is), it’s still one of my favorite places on Earth. As my home away from home for the past two years, USC has served as a place of unparalleled learning, discovery and opportunity. I joined the Trojan Family as an international relations major because of my inherent interest in all things related to the Middle East — North Africa region, specifically regarding Israel-Palestine. It is my hope that my concentrations in the Middle East and foreign policy, as well as my studies in French and Arabic, will give me the tools necessary to immerse myself in the political and policy world of the region. After my studies, I’m hoping to pursue a career in either journalism or foreign policy — or both! We’ll see where it goes.

At USC, the learning experience isn’t confined to the classroom. In fact, when I’m not in class, I can usually be found running throughout the urban oasis that is USC’s beautiful campus. I’m currently the Special Projects Editor of USC’s student-run paper, the Daily Trojan, and have previously served as the News Editor, Online Editor and Editorial Director. I’ve also spent the last two semesters co-writing the column Point/Counterpoint (it runs Tuesdays — give it a read)! I recently co-founded J Street U USC, a political organization advocating for peace, security and social justice in Israel-Palestine. I’m also a proud member of the Political Student Assembly, the Phi Alpha Delta Pre-Law Fraternity and Society 53, the student ambassadors to the USC Alumni Association for which I am currently serving as Director of Networking Night.

Though I’ve been lucky to have had so many experiences at USC, there’s still so much I want to do! For instance, I’m hoping to study abroad this upcoming spring semester in France through the USC Paris program. I’m also hoping to pursue an honors thesis my senior year, likely focusing on the ways certain diasporic communities maintain a strong sense of national identity. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, I really want to achieve my undergraduate dream of trying every Ground Zero milkshake at least once.

If you have any questions about all things USC and Dornsife, don’t hesitate to connect with me on Twitter! Summarizing how much I love USC in 140 characters won’t be easy, but I’m up for the challenge.

Fight on!

Jocelyn IntroHiiiiii everyone, this is Jocelyn, one of the newbies of Dornsife Ambassadors! I come from Shandong, China (Ya, there are other places in China besides Beijing and Shanghai). USC is the first place where I have stayed abroad for more than a normal vacation length, so LA is my second hometown!

I am a sophomore studying Economics and International Relations. I added IR as a second major last semester. I did not take any ECON course last year; instead, I was freely taking many GEs and electives in different subjects. I accidentally took an IR 210 course, and guess what, I found my hidden interest! I had a completely inspiring experience, and the professor is super duper universal-incomparably amazing! (You IR students know who I am talking about if you also got a IR 210 T-shirt.) International Relations had never been an option on my potential college major list. So this was big!

Outside the classroom, I am in USC Oriana Women’s Choir, Remedy Through Music, and USC Swipes for the Homeless. I also intern at a Chinese foodie media company. Basically I just eat and write — so… when you want authentic Chinese food, Yelp doesn’t help, I do!

Now I am adding Dornsife Ambassador as a new role, and I love it! I can’t wait to start my amabassador-ing journey!

Fight on!

Hey all! My name is Alec Gallego! I am currently majoring in Biological Sciences and am on the Pre-Dental track. My career goal is to own my private practice as a General Dentist and later teach at the university level. I’m from  Hacienda Heights, Alec IntroCalifornia, only a couple miles away from campus. I’m currently involved in the Chemistry Club, the Pre-Dental Honor society and Dornsife Ambassadors. When I’m not hitting the books, you can find me playing guitar, watching SportsCenter about 3 times a day or reveling over how much I love superheroes (Batman all the way!). I love all things sports from football to basketball from darts to bowling.

My experience so far at USC Dornsife has provided me with numerous opportunities to get involved whether that be through volunteer experience or engaging with my peers. As a little 10-year-old kid who only liked to play Playstation, I always dreamed of going to USC. I would play my NCAA 2007 PS2 game and hear the Fight Song every time I scored a touchdown. That dream came true because USC Dornsife provided me the opportunity to attend this beautiful, academic driven and innovative university. USC Dornsife continues to support and encourage me throughout my academic career in my journey to fulfill my dreams and aspirations.

Another interesting thing about me is that I love, and I mean absolutely LOVE, everything science related. I’m the type of guy who googles EVERYTHING and wants to know how everything works. My favorite science, for obvious reasons, is biology  — especially anatomy and physiology. I take great interest in learning about the intricate and complex nature of the vast amount of organisms that live in our world. Yes, I am a nerd, and I am proud!  I have so many fond memories of USC and it’s only been a year. The past year of my life has been the absolute best because of this incredible school and all the wonderful people that populate it. I look forward to making many, many more memories at this wonderful school that cares about each and every individual student. Thanks for taking the time to read about me, and remember to always Fight On!

EmilieHey Dornsifers! My name is Emilie Skoog. I am a freshman here at USC from Los Angeles, California — 20 minutes down the road near Venice Beach. I come from an interesting background in which my mom is from France and my dad is from Sweden, making me a first generation American and a newbie to anything and everything ‘college.’ Despite being lost in the application process, I managed to stumble upon and land in the #1 University to be at — USC. I am a Human Biology major which of course places me in the best college within USC — Dornsife! I am planning to minor in Business and Kinesiology as well. As of now, I am interested in working in Orthopedics. Whether that leads me to becoming a doctor or head physician for an athletic team, I am not yet sure.

A little bit about myself: I’m one of those people who loves conversation, meeting new people, and becoming involved in everything that appears interesting to me. Since arriving at campus, I have joined the Judo Club, French Club, Kicks for Kids, Alpha Epsilon Delta, and most proudly, Dornsife Ambassadors.

Fun fact: I eat all foods (including fries, burgers, pizza, and soup) with a fork and a knife. On that note, if you can’t find me eating at EVK, I’m most likely hidden in Birnkrant’s music room playing the piano or slack-lining with my buddies in McCarthy Quad. Oh, and if you see a blonde girl rip-sticking to class, that is most likely me.

If I may impart to you one thing I’ve learned while here at USC: No matter how long the car/plane ride to get here, everyone fights on just as hard. So, fight on!

Greetings! My name is Kyle Nam Pham (Yes, my middle name and last name rhyme.), and I’m a freshman hailing from the wonderfully suburban Tustin, California. It’s crazy to think that just a year ago, I had no idea where I’d be going to college.Kyle Intro Fortunately, I’ve ended up at USC, which is honestly the greatest thing that has ever happened to me.

I’m majoring in cognitive science, which explores the facilitation of thought and the processes of the mind. In simpler terms, it’s thinking about thinking. Throughout high school, I was always fascinated by the human mind and human behavior. I found myself continually questioning the reasons behind the actions of the people around me. This curiosity, coupled with an affinity for messing with people, led me to create a club dedicated toward conducting social experiments. I quickly found that my interest in psychology and sociology had become a true passion. With an interdisciplinary approach that really appealed to me, cognitive science stood out to me as the perfect major. While I am keeping an open mind, I’m currently in a pre-law career path.

Out of all of USC’s amazing qualities, I think that what I appreciate the most so far is the staggering multitude of opportunities offered on campus. There’s legitimately something for everyone. Every interest and hobby you can possibly think of is accommodated here. I’m currently getting involved with research in social psychology. In addition, I’m serving as a freshman representative on the Trojan Scholars Society executive board. I can proudly say that USC isn’t just giving me an education; it’s giving me an experience. It’s only been two months, but this experience has already been so incredible. So much has happened and so much more has yet to happen. As my mind contemplates the prospects of going abroad or being an intern, I have to remind myself to slow down and appreciate each day. After all…the wise Ferris Bueller once said, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around for a while, you could miss it.”

Look at Me Now

Jennifer O IntroHi, guys! My name is Jennifer Orozco. I am a sophomore studying Chicano/Latino Studies with a minor in Health Care Studies. I am always told that this is an interesting combination, so I’ll explain. Ultimately, I want to apply to medical school and, hopefully, become a primary-care physician serving in an under-served community. I have broad interests, so I am trying to link them together somehow. I think my major and minor combination will give me a greater understanding and comprehension of the social issues that surround low income communities and will allow me to give better health care in the future. Those are my life goals in a nutshell.

Now that I am no longer a freshman and can balance my academics, social life, and extracurricular activities, I am a lot more involved on- and off-campus. I work at the Natural History Museum taking care of specimen and am a tutor coordinator for Peace Kids. I am part of Trojan Health Volunteers (THV-housed under JEP) and Peer Health Exchange (PHE) for which I will be teaching health lessons in local high schools to freshmen. I am also part of Chicanos for Health Education (CHE) and a mentee for a mentorship program called First Generation Mentorship Program. You’re probably wondering when I actually have time to have “fun,” but this is my fun, giving back. No, but really, I just joined my sorority, Sigma Delta Tau, so we always have some social event going on where I can take a break from all the crazy planning and just relax.

I am from Dallas, TX so I do not really know the LA area. I take this as an opportunity to explore the city and adventure.There is so much to do from finding a new restaurant (try C & O Trattoria sometime), concerts, museums (go to the Getty Museum, it’s free) and hiking spots (do not go off trails because it gets scary) to finding the most exotic street art. I have come across interesting sculptures, boutique shops, parks, and coffee shops that I would have never heard of if I did not explore. Just last week, I ran 3.4 miles with this group my friend and I found on Instagram called Blacklist LA. I know it sounds so sketch, but I promise it’s not. It was one of the greatest experiences I have had during my time here, running through downtown LA on a Monday night with 50+ runners. I love to keep busy and going off campus whenever I get a chance. Like I said, something interesting always comes up!

I think I’ve shared a lot already, so I’ll stop and save more experiences for later. I am super excited to be a Dornsife Ambassador and cannot wait to see what else my sophomore year has in store for me here at USC.

My name is Maddie Price, and I am a new member of the Trojan Family as well as a new member of the Dornsife Ambassadors. This August my family and I packed my room into 8 suitcases and boarded a plane from Indianapolis to Los Angeles so IMaddie Intro could begin my freshman year in USC’s Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences. I have always dreamed of living in the beautiful, and of course sunny, Southern California, and I could not have been more excited to start my new life. I declared my International Relations major and my French minor, but I didn’t want my college life to be solely academics. As a freshman coming from out of state, I knew the fastest way to adjust would be to get involved with all the activities that USC and Dornsife has to offer. I went through rush and became a new member of Delta Gamma Alpha Nu. I signed up for the Joint Educational Project so that I could teach French to middle school students in the area. And I applied to Dornsife Ambassadors so that I could have a chance to represent the school that I already loved.

Once I became involved, life was suddenly full of philanthropy, family, sisterhood, teaching, and academics. In the first few months that I have been here, I have realized that I am so incredibly lucky to have chosen a school that has already given me the opportunity to join so many fulfilling activities; I feel as if I’m a part of the USC family on multiple levels. Throughout the remaining time I have at USC, I plan to take advantage of the numerous programs that Dornsife has to offer. I want to talk with prospective students about my USC experiences, study abroad in Paris, and make connections with possible employers through internships. I can honestly say that going to USC was the best decision that I could have made — I truly could not be happier!

Kyra IntroHey everyone! My name is Kyra Schoonover, and I’m a sophomore here at USC. I’m also a new transfer student, so I hope my experiences here can be helpful to those of you who are considering transferring to USC. I am originally from Cleveland, Ohio, which is pretty far away, so it has been a big adjustment moving to Los Angeles. Overall, I absolutely love USC, and I made the best decision of my life by coming here.

Here’s a little more information about me: I’m majoring in political science and plan to attend law school. I hope to gain experience in different areas of law throughout my career, but ultimately, I would like to work to remove systemic bias from the legal system. This semester, I’m taking mostly political science courses, and I’m beginning to explore possible areas to double major.

At USC, I have found many ways to explore my academic interests. Currently, I am an Associate Editor for the USC Journal of Law and Society, and I have an exciting internship for class credit. I’ve also gotten to tutor local high school students in statistics through the USC MED-Cor program. The academic opportunities here are unmatched, and often, the hardest part can be deciding exactly what to choose because there is so much offered.

In addition to academic interests, I am also a huge sports fan. I played lacrosse throughout high school, and one year at the Division 1 level at my previous college. The sports atmosphere at USC is amazing, and I absolutely love the school spirit and Trojan pride! Football games and tailgating are definitely some of my best memories so far. I can’t wait to attend basketball games in the upcoming season.

Every day at USC is different and exciting, and I love having the opportunity to network and meet students from all over the world. The Trojan family is incredibly diverse, and there are a ton of clubs and organizations for every interest. So far, one of my favorite ways to network has been joining the Diversity and Inclusion Committee of Black Student Assembly, which has also allowed me to make new friends. And yes, of course, USC has the perfect location being in Los Angeles. Coming from frigid, snowy Cleveland, I am always appreciative of the beautiful weather. There is an endless abundance of activities in the city and on campus. So far, I love the beaches, the parties, the gorgeous scenery, and the amazing people that I have met. I can’t wait to share more of my experiences with you all! Fight on!

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