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USC Dornsife Magazine News

"Sustainability means something different within each discipline, but there's a common understanding of the bigger issues we face," says Provost Professor of Psychology and Business Wendy Wood, who is among those leading the USC Dornsife Sustainability Task Force.

The Task at Land (and Sea and Air)

February 7, 2014

It’s 5 p.m. so you grab your keys and cell phone and head home. As you hear the click of your office door lock shut, you realize you’ve neglected to turn off the light and your computer. But there’s no…

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…

The Program for Environmental and Regional Equity (PERE), housed at USC Dornsife, contributed to reports that ensured low-income communities of color would have access to the benefits of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power's solar rooftop feed-in tariff program. Workers are seen here installing solar panels on a building. Photo courtesy of Fort Dix/U.S. Army Environmental Command.

A Place in the Sun

December 19, 2013

Gleaming rows of solar panels lined the rooftop of the Oxnard Plaza Apartments in North Hollywood, Calif. Then-Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa flipped a switch to “on.” The June 2013 event marked the first…

Maria Guzman helped PERE and other organizations collect air-quality data in the Pacoima, Calif., neighborhood, which is surrounded by freeways. Studies show that those living near air pollution sources have a higher risk of asthma, as her children experienced. They also risk cancer and respiratory illnesses. Photos by Damon Casarez.

‘Our Voices Have Been Heard’

November 13, 2013

The early morning hour was taking its toll on Maria Guzman as she stood near a freeway underpass in Pacoima, Calif. As the sun rose and traffic chugged by, she diligently recorded her coordinates with a Global Positioning…

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…

Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry Arieh Warshel’s journey to winning the Nobel Prize has been an intriguing one — from his birth on a kibbutz in Israel to his time at the University of Cambridge, England, where he published his seminal work, to his revolutionary research at USC Dornsife. Photo by Max S. Gerber.

A Nobel Victory

November 13, 2013

Fate was sealed after an off-the-cuff remark by Eliezer Finkman. Entering Technion ­– Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa, a young Arieh Warshel asked his friend Finkman what he should study. “Chemistry…

Whether in the laboratory, on land or under water, students at the USC Wrigley Institute investigate ways to address environmental challenges. Photos by Corey Arnold.

Treasure Island

November 13, 2013

From a helicopter circling above Catalina Island, one might see gorgeous, bathing suit-clad couples sipping mimosas on yachts with names like Been There, Done That. But when the helicopter swoops past Avalon Bay, beyond the…

Brian Rodysill ’12 is attending medical school at the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine in Rochester, Minn. He graduated from USC Dornsife with a bachelor’s degree in environmental studies and a minor in natural science. Illustration by Niklas Asker.

The Environmentalists: Brian Rodysill

November 12, 2013

Why did you decide to go into medicine? My drive crystallized after suffering severe spinal trauma in a skiing accident in 2010. Shattered bone fragments punctured my spinal canal, resulting in a lack of feeling and movement…

Tiffany Pereira ’11 is a research associate at the San Diego Zoo’s Desert Tortoise Conservation Center located in the Mohave Desert in Nevada. She graduated from USC Dornsife with a bachelor’s degree in environmental studies and a minor in fine arts from the USC Roski School of Fine Arts. Illustration by Niklas Asker.

The Environmentalists: Tiffany Pereira

November 12, 2013

Why do you love working in conservation? We take in desert tortoises, a threatened species, and rehabilitate them, raising public awareness while conducting research. After tortoises are released for relocation, they are…