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Their Adventure Begins

USC College freshmen took their first step in higher education when they moved into campus-wide residence halls Aug. 19.

By Pamela J. Johnson and Stephanie Jones MA ’10
August 21, 2009

A multitude of freshmen arrived on campus the week before the fall semester begins Aug. 24. Here, students roll their belongings into New Residence Hall. Photos by Pamela J. Johnson.

A multitude of freshmen arrived on campus the week before the fall semester begins Aug. 24. Here, students roll their belongings into New Residence Hall. Photos by Pamela J. Johnson.

 

Joy with a tinge of heartache was evident throughout campus on Move-In Day Aug. 19, as students unpacked boxes and plastic storage tubs in various residence halls with the help of their parents. Farewell scenes were played out with hugs and parents expressing a sense of pride. Students appeared thrilled to be embarking on their academic journey.

To date, 1,175 freshmen and 1,250 transfer students have been enrolled in USC College. The new students participated in USC Welcome Week, which in addition to Move-In Day, included parents' welcome and bon voyage receptions, student orientation sessions, academic seminars, ice cream socials, meet faculty luncheons and Friday's USC College Welcome Day Picnic. Activities continue this weekend with hikes and barbecues.

1. Anna Lindtjorn, an international student originally from Norway, unpacks her suitcase at her suite in Flour Tower. Lindtjorn has most recently lived in Los Altos in the Bay Area, where her father, an engineer, is working temporarily. Her father is from Norway and her mother is Finnish. She’s majoring in international relations in USC College. “I came here on a campus tour and was taken by the Trojan spirit.”

Lindtjorn prepares to hang on her dorm wall a photo collage of her family and friends from around the world. She and her family have lived in various places, including Japan, England and Texas.

2. Marcus Paul of Gardena, 15 miles south of Los Angeles, purchases a Flour Tower T-shirt while moving into the residence hall. Paul, a freshman, will double major in psychology at USC College and jazz studies at USC Thornton School of Music. Or, he said he may decide to minor in biochemistry rather than double majoring in psychology. “I’d like to be a jazz musician, a psychologist or a doctor,” he said. “Jazz and science are actually similar subjects of study. Both require a deeper level of thinking.”

Paul meets new friends inside Flour Tower. Paul applied to eight universities and was accepted to all. “USC has always been my first choice,” he said. “Its music school is well-known and I had heard its science program is one of the best.”

Unpacking inside his suite, Paul finds his well-worn Trojans’ sandals he bought long ago. “I’d been planning to come to USC forever.”

Paul unpacks his Trojan mug and ceramic container, and places them on a shelf. The ceramic pot for “College Cash,” was a gift from his aunt Letitia. “My aunt is a psychiatrist,” he said, “which is why I’m interested in psychology.”

Taking a break from moving in, Paul practices the trumpet, an instrument he has played for 10 years. His father, musician Ricardo Paul, once played in the Phenix horn section for the famous African American R&B band Earth, Wind and Fire. “No matter what I end up doing, I’ll always play music,” the younger Paul said.

3. Rebecca Wertman, an international relations major in USC College, holds in her lap Quatchi, the mascot for the 2010 Olympics, which she hopes to attend in her hometown of Vancouver, Canada. “I did my research and the USC School of International Relations is among the oldest and most respected in the country,” Wertman said. “From reading the class descriptions, the program totally fits my personality. USC definitely has that American college vibe I was looking for.”

After unpacking at her dorm in Bimkrant Residence Hall, Wertman enjoys her view overlooking the heart of campus, including the Von KleinSmid Center, where she will spend much of her time as an international relations student. “I can just walk a few steps to Leavey Library,” she said. “Everything is right here.”

4. Kelsey Valentine (middle) is flanked by her parents Kathy Kemper and Jim Valentine, who traveled from their hometown of Washington, D.C., to help their daughter move into her dorm at the New Residence Hall. Valentine, an environmental studies major, said of moving across country to attend USC College: “I wanted to come to California and wanted a university with a strong alumni. USC also is one of the only schools in the nation that offers environmental studies with a business emphasis.”

Valentine hugs her mother goodbye. There was a long embrace, but few tears: “I’m very excited and actually not feeling melancholy about seeing my daughter off to college,” said mom Kemper. “Kelsey’s ready to be in college and to be independent.”

5. Isabelle Trainer of Palo Alto, Calif., the mother of Martin Trainer, a freshman undecided in his major in USC College, rests for a moment after a long day of moving. She would soon be returning home to the Bay Area. “It’s hard for a mom, but I’m really happy for him,” Trainer said. “When you see that your son is happy, it makes it easier to let go.”

 

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