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Alumni News

David St. John, professor of English and comparative literature at USC Dornsife. Photo by Peter Zhaoyu Zhou.

Showcasing Words and Music

February 20, 2015

The Provost’s Writers Series, designed to highlight extraordinary USC authors, will take a musical turn on Feb. 25 when poet David St. John reads from and discusses his work. Created by former USC Provost and incoming…

Self-proclaimed visionary Maria Paula Acuña holds a Polaroid photograph taken by a follower purporting to show proof of the presence of the Virgin Mary. Photo by Matt Gainer.

Looking the Wrong Way

February 20, 2015

Standing amid the desolate beauty of the California desert, hundreds of people raise instamatic cameras to snap pictures of a cloudless, cerulean sky. Others drop to their knees beside their cars and pick-up trucks, yet more…

Based in Singapore, Kaitlin Solimine splits her time between running the online academic magazine <em>Hippo Reads</em> and finishing her first novel. Photo courtesy of Kaitlin Solimine.

Her Heart’s in the Far East

February 13, 2015

A simple twist of fate launched the trajectory of Kaitlin Solimine’s academic pursuits. As a high school student at Phillips Exeter Academy in New Hampshire, Solimine, who earned her master’s in East Asian area…

The Joint Educational Project’s intensive internship program affords would-be lawyers and law school applicants real-world experience in the field. Here students attend a training session led by junior Jiaqi Wang, left. Photos by Peter Zhaoyu Zhou.

Ahead of the Game

February 9, 2015

Going into her junior year, Lillian Zazueta decided she wanted to pursue a career in law. Investigating related internship opportunities, the comparative literature major and Russian minor learned about the Joint Educational…

Manuel Pastor (seated) is presented with a chair bearing the university seal. From left: Michael Quick, interim provost and senior vice president for academic affairs; Patricia and Gerald Turpanjian, the chair’s donors; and Steve Kay, dean of USC Dornsife. Photos by Steve Cohn.

The People’s Academic

February 9, 2015

At a ceremony honoring his installation as the inaugural holder of the Turpanjian Chair in Civil Society and Social Change, Professor Manuel Pastor made three pledges for how he will serve the USC — and greater Los…

Alumnus Oscar Balderrama is a script coordinator on the popular television show <em>Arrow</em>. He earned his bachelor's degree in creative writing from USC Dornsife in 2005. Photo courtesy of Oscar Balderrama.

Write on Target

February 6, 2015

For five years, Oliver Queen was presumed dead. Unbeknownst to his family and friends, the billionaire playboy survived a shipwreck only to be stranded on a remote island in the Pacific. When he finally returns home, he finds…

In the new Fisher Fellows Program, USC Dornsife first-generation undergraduates will participate in international travel, field research and community service. Sam Fisher graduated from USC Dornsife in 2011. Photo by Matt Meindl.

Becoming a Giver

January 28, 2015

When it comes to fly fishing, Sam Fisher may have the patience of a monk. But in regard to giving back, the USC Dornsife alumnus refuses to wait. “You’ve gotta give back when something is given to you,”…

Alumnus Hovanes Margarian is so proud of his USC Dornsife education he has decorated the offices of his Glendale law firm with Trojan memorabilia, including this giant photograph of Tommy Trojan. Photos courtesy of Hovanes Margarian.

The Accidental Attorney

January 26, 2015

Hovanes Margarian never intended to become an attorney. After graduating in just three years from USC Dornsife in 2002 with a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences, Margarian had applied to medical school and was on…

As one of the government’s most experienced disaster response experts, alumnus Ben Hemingway led the battle against the deadly Ebola virus in Liberia, where he is seen with local residents. Photos courtesy of Ben Hemingway.

When Disaster Strikes

January 21, 2015

Explaining to anguished parents why they could not hold their dead children and kiss them one last time before putting them in the ground was one of many tough challenges humanitarian aid workers faced during the recent Ebola…

Earning his bachelor’s and Ph.D. in international relations at USC Dornsife, Andrew Manning taught courses on foreign policy at the VonKleinSmid Center, shown here. Photo by Taylor Faust.

In Memoriam: Andrew Manning, 42

January 5, 2015

Andrew Manning, an alumnus and faculty member at USC Dornsife’s School of International Relations, died unexpectedly on Christmas Day. Manning earned his bachelor’s in 1994 and Ph.D. in international relations in…