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Alumni News

Devoting mornings to what he calls “the carpentry” of writing, in which he frames and builds on ideas, Kirk DeMicco ’91 admits that creativity is hard work. However, <em>The Croods</em> director also relies on his subconscious to find unexpected solutions to creative challenges. Photos by Max S. Gerber.

Crood Awakening

January 16, 2014

As the drum rhythm and stirring horns build in intensity, the high adrenaline chase gathers momentum as the Crood family hunts down and steals a giant, blue-and-orange-speckled egg from a ramu — a hybrid of ram and emu…

Alumnus Anthony Marra's debut novel was longlisted for the National Book Award in fiction, among other laurels. Set in wartime Chechnya, the story was inspired by his study abroad in Russia, which exposed him to Chechnya and ignited a keen interest in the country, its culture and history. Photo by Smeeta Mahanti.

A Constellation of Accolades

December 17, 2013

It’s not bad when the fiction editor of The Washington Post names your first novel his favorite book of 2013. And when President Barack Obama is caught on camera purchasing said novel, that’s also pretty…

We See Snow Differently

We See Snow Differently

December 9, 2013

Share USC Dornsife’s holiday greetings with your family and friends on YouTube.

In 1959, USC’s president named Robert Dockson, at age 41, dean of the then-USC School of Commerce. Dockson earned his bachelor's and Ph.D. at USC Dornsife and donated generously to USC. Here, Dockson advises at USC. Photo courtesy of USC Marshall School of Business.

In Memoriam: Robert Dockson

December 4, 2013

Robert R. Dockson, among the most distinguished graduates of USC Dornsife’s School of International Relations and a generous USC benefactor, has died. He was 96. Dockson died Nov. 26 at his Los Angeles home, surrounded…

On the University Park campus, from left, USC Dornsife Dean Steve Kay, Linda and Harlan Martens, and the Linda and Harlan Martens Endowed Director’s Chair for the USC-Huntington Early Modern Studies Institute, Peter Mancall. The endowed chairship was made possible through a $1 million donation by the Martens. Photo by Steve Cohn.

Securing the Future

November 27, 2013

Growing up in Pasadena, Calif., Harlan Martens’ family would bring out-of-town visitors to the magnificent Huntington Library. His wife Linda, originally of Fullerton, Calif., also remembers visiting the library as a…

Professor of Earth Sciences Thorsten Becker has been awarded a 2013 Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel Research Award. He will use the award to continue his research on the dynamics of earthquake faults in Potsdam, Germany. Photo by Michelle Boston.

Finding Fault

November 20, 2013

Thorsten Becker, professor of earth sciences, has won a 2013 Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel Research Award, granted by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. The award will support his continued research in Potsdam, Germany, on the…

USC Dornsife alumnus Bill Altaffer is among the most traveled people in the world. He has exhausted 12 passports and 130 visas, visiting all 192 United Nations countries plus 300 island groups. Here he is pictured on the summit of China's Mount Hua Shan surrounded by red Tibetan Buddhist prayer flags. Photo courtesy of Bill Altaffer.

Trojan Globetrotter

November 15, 2013

William “Bill” Altaffer has feasted on boiled cobra washed down with warm snake’s blood from a street stall in Bangkok, Thailand. He’s polished off a plate of baked crocodile skewered on a Masai sword…

The Ananias sisters, pictured here with their parents, are USC alumni. The family survived the <em>Costa Concordia</em> shipwreck in 2012. From top left: Georgia, Dean; From bottom left: Debbie and Valerie of USC Dornsife and Cindy of Keck School of Medicine of USC. Photo by Arturo Montoya.

Five Hours of Terror

November 15, 2013

When the theme song from the movie Titanic boomed from speakers, Georgia Ananias remarked to her husband maybe that wasn’t the best song to play on a cruise ship. An hour later, just as their dinner salads arrived at…

A successful career woman, mother of six and grandmother of eight, Cynthia Maxwell-Dillard is just getting started. Illustration by Robert Neubecker.

In My Opinion

November 13, 2013

Sustainability usually refers to issues of maintaining the environment and ecosystem or improving the ozone layer. How about personal sustainability? For nearly 60 years, my determination to fulfill a commitment never…

Geraldine Knatz

Raising the Anchor

November 13, 2013

Growing up in Wayne, N.J., Geraldine Knatz loved nothing more than going crabbing with her family on the Jersey Shore. Until, heading home one summer evening, she was overcome by remorse. Insisting her father turn around, she…