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Alumni News

Frontline Scholar: Justin

Frontline Scholar: Justin

April 20, 2016

Justin Arana ’05 was searching for purpose in his life when he traveled to Mozambique. There he encountered firsthand the country’s water crisis and founded the nonprofit organization Water Underground to address…

Two USC Dornsife alumnae are recognized for their achievements and dedication to social service

Two USC Dornsife alumnae are recognized for their achievements and dedication to social service

April 13, 2016

An international relations major at USC Dornsife, America Ferrera began to doubt whether her dream of becoming an actress would fulfill her desire to enact positive change in the world. But when she told international…

Brig. Gen. Viet Luong leaves his visit with first-year ROTC cadets on campus. Photos by David Sprague.

USC alumnus, Army brigadier general shares tale of success with ROTC cadets

April 5, 2016

The last time Viet Luong ’87 visited USC, he watched the Trojan football team crush UCLA 50-0 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in 2011, but he didn’t stick around. Since then, he has made history. A graduate…

Alumna Denise Nicholas left Michigan as a young woman to join the civil rights movement in the 1960s. As an actress with the Free Southern Theater, she performed across Mississippi and Louisiana.

Actress and novelist Denise Nicholas draws from her experiences in the civil rights movement

March 25, 2016

Denise Nicholas was 19 years old when she interrupted her pre-law studies at the University of Michigan to travel to the Deep South and the heart of the American Civil Rights Movement. It was a dangerous time and place for a…

Photos by Djak Azran.

No RuPaul-ogies: Alpha Mulugeta

March 7, 2016

“I like my body,” Alpha Mulugeta ’06 declared with a subtle rasp to his voice. A midsummer cold belied his normally dulcet tone. “I’m gender variant, but that doesn’t mean I want to be a…

Dawn Gross interviewing her first mentor, Jeffrey Mandel, a hospice and palliative medicine doctor practicing in the Bay Area, during the launch of her radio show, "Dying to Talk." Photo courtesy of Dawn Gross.

Alumna and physician transforms end-of-life conversations from dread to discovery

March 7, 2016

Dawn Gross knows how to talk about death. “I’ve asked hundreds of terminally ill patients, ‘If I had a magic wand, what would you wish for?’ And not one of them has ever answered, ‘Cure…

California Crown clothing company was founded by Jay Perlman, left, and his business partner Misu Minhaz. Both men graduated from USC Dornsife in 2012. Photos courtesy of Jay Perlman.

Alumnus nurtures an idea and grows a business with the help of his Trojan community

March 2, 2016

When Jay Perlman rolled out of bed one morning in 2013, he saw a notification in his email that a new order had been placed to California Crown, his fledgling online clothing company. When he logged in to the site to take a…

Each solar year isn't exactly 365.25 days long, so it's not quite correct to add a day every four years. When a year is divisible by 100, but not by 400, leap day is skipped.

The perks and trials of having a birthday every four years

February 28, 2016

Most of you probably know that 2016 is a leap year, but did you know that leap day doesn’t occur quite every four years? When a year is divisible by 100, but not by 400, leap day is skipped. For instance, there was…

A MERIT applicant presents her poster on health care disparity to Tyler Mains and other applicants during the Medical Leadership Course — MERIT's selection process — in January 2014. Photos courtesy of Tyler Mains.

USC Dornsife alumnus aims to eradicate educational and health-care inequalities

February 24, 2016

Assigned to teach biology in a Baltimore, Md., high school, Teach For America corps member and USC Dornsife alumnus Tyler Mains was shocked by how far many of his students were trailing academically and angry about the…

Alumnus and USC Dornsife professor Jonathan Kellerman is the best-selling author of 47 books. Photo by Joan Allen.

Novelist Jonathan Kellerman explains how his psychology training informs his writing

February 22, 2016

In 1974, Jonathan Kellerman, then a graduate student in psychology at USC Dornsife, was driving to work at Children’s Hospital, Los Angeles, where he was interning, when he passed a sign in the window of an antique store…