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From the Dean, Spring/Summer 2013

No Bounds

An international relations major created a painting. A physics major penned a short story. An environmental science and health major wrote a song. 


This spring, when we sponsored an “I am USC Dornsife” contest, for which we invited students to use their creativity to define how they embody the spirit and mission of USC Dornsife, the submissions were fascinating. In addition to paintings, short stories and a song, we received essays, poems and videos from students across the College.

In her first-place essay describing how her undergraduate experience has led her to this pinnacle moment, Rebecca Braun, an international relations major and French minor, writes, “USC Dornsife has helped make me unlimited, unable to be bound by national frontiers, stereotypes or academic assumptions.” Second-place winner Brittany Lala, a neuroscience and biological sciences double major, created two paintings — one of a human mother swaddling her child and the other of a chimpanzee mother hugging her baby — to reflect the innate biological connection among all species. Sociology major John Ingram placed third for his poem “Composing USC,” a collection of three works written to form U-S-C in large letters.

What each of these entries reinforced for me is the critical role USC Dornsife plays as an engine for discovery. There are quite simply no limits to what we can create.

We build academic enterprises that transform how we think about and conduct research. We imagine new worlds where characters explore the depths of our humanity. We push the boundaries of our fields by combining disparate disciplines such as history and accounting. We investigate how to form organizations that can do the most good for the greatest number of individuals.

While the dreams of our students and faculty members are each unique, there is one common thread. To be realized, these visions require financial resources. To ensure that discovery does not have to wait, I invite you to join USC Dornsife’s $750 million fundraising initiative as part of The Campaign for the University of Southern California, the most ambitious fundraising effort in USC’s history. Together, with your support, we can create a future that knows no bounds.

Steve Kay
Dean of USC Dornsife
Anna H. Bing Dean’s Chair