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After an injury that ended his NFL career, USC Dornsife alumnus Thomas Williams raised himself up  to launch a successful new profession as a motivational speaker and author. Photos courtesy of Thomas Williams.

Permission to Dream

October 21, 2014

When Thomas Williams was 12 years old, his mother attended his 6th grade parent-teacher conference. There, Williams’ teacher told her that by the time her son was 16 he would be a gang leader, a drug dealer or dead.…

Alumnus Rodney Swan owns and operates Swan Farms, comprised of 4,000 acres of agricultural land in the vicinity of Blythe, California. Here, Swan’s daughter, Emma, stands in a field watching the thresher machine. Photo courtesy of Rodney Swan.

From Finance to Farming

October 21, 2014

Rodney Swan is most comfortable in jeans and a T-shirt. Not only did he grow up on a small family farm cultivating cotton near Blythe, California, as a young man he worked in the fields of several local farms. After earning a…

Justin Underhill uses digital animation techniques to explore the use of light in gallery spaces, including the work of Leonardo da Vinci. Underhill is a 2014-16 USC Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in Digital Humanities. Image courtesy of Justin Underhill.

Technology and the Humanities

October 20, 2014

Eavesdrop on students at the USC School of Cinematic Arts’ new interactive media building, and you’d expect to overhear discussions on film, video games and multimedia design. But on Oct. 9, these students mingled…

Interactive Maps for the Brain

Golgi Your Brain

October 20, 2014

What’s the route between smell and memory? Where’s the connection between habits and Parkinson’s disease? How does habit detour into addiction? To answer these and other complex scientific and medical…

USC Dornsife’s Scott Fraser (left) and Don Arnold, and Carl Kesselman of USC Viterbi School of Engineering, are redefining what is possible with their research mapping neurons in zebrafish to learn how new memories are formed. Fraser photo by John Livzey; Arnold photo by Peter Zhaoyu Zhou; Kesselman photo courtesy of Carl Kesselman.

$9.7 Million NIH Award

October 17, 2014

Three top USC scientists — Don Arnold, Scott Fraser and Carl Kesselman — will receive a National Institutes of Health (NIH) Transformative Research Award to map the neurons in the living brain of a zebrafish,…

This photograph was taken in Auschwitz I after the liberation. Photo credit: Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum Archives, courtesy of www.auschwitz.org.

Auschwitz: The Past is Present

October 16, 2014

USC Shoah Foundation — The Institute for Visual History and Education and the World Jewish Congress will support the official observance of the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz with a global communication…

Two children carry containers filled with water in Northern Uganda. Drinking unclean water can lead to many diseases. More than 3.4 million people die each year from water, sanitation and hygiene-related causes. Photos by Justin Arana.

My Name Is Water

October 16, 2014

Justin Arana was traveling the world on a spiritual quest to find himself. The journey was spurred by his grandfather, who had asked if Arana would be happy with the worth of his life if he died the next day. It was 2008,…

While some areas of California are more likely to have earthquakes than others, all of California is at higher risk compared to the rest of the country.

Are You Ready?

October 15, 2014

The Great California ShakeOut is coming. USC will participate in the state’s annual earthquake drill on Thursday, Oct. 16 at 10:16 a.m. The Southern California Earthquake Center (SCEC) housed in USC Dornsife created The…

In addition to writing, The Writing Program at USC Dornsife improves students’ communication and critical thinking, top skills employers look for in a job candidate.

Got English?

October 15, 2014

You think honing your writing skills prepares you solely for a writing career? Think again. For a wide range of industries, the most in-demand skill is writing. That is coupled with good oral communication skills, according…

John Wilson of spatial sciences leads the teaching of spatial technologies in the recently launched GeoHealth track — the first education collaboration of its kind. Photo by Geoffrey Kass.

A Space for Health

October 14, 2014

Seeking to reduce costs and increase efficiency, an East Coast hospital recently mapped the workflow of its radiology department. The process recorded the movement of staff between stations and the time it took them to…