USC Ambassadors: a special community of supporters

USC Village praised for its design; Blind student-athlete Jake Olson completes perfect snap; President Nikias urges congressional action on DACA

September 2017 Edition

This fall semester, we have been so gratified to see how quickly and enthusiastically our new USC Village has been embraced—not only by our students, faculty, and staff, but by our local community, alumni, and friends… This project was seven years in the making, so it’s wonderful to see so many enjoying the buildings and patios, dining hall, fitness center, green spaces, and shops. Without question, it has profoundly transformed the experience USC offers its students.


USC Village celebrates grand opening; Hecuba, Queen of Troy unveiled; Bovard Scholars program

August 2017 Edition

As our 137th class of students begins a new academic year, it arrives at a milestone moment in our university’s history, as together we celebrate a transformative addition to our University Park Campus: the USC Village…  USC’s campuses have transformed in recent years, and alumni and friends always marvel at the breadth of new facilities.  But this project—the largest in USC’s history and the largest in the history of south Los Angeles—inspires special pride for our Trojan Family, as just a generation ago, USC was viewed primarily as a commuter campus… At the heart of the USC Village is a proud new monument for our university.


Trojans celebrate commencement; USC recognized as a leader in accepting transfer students; Biotech Park plans advance

June 2017 Edition

As we enjoy summer on campus, I would like to return to last month’s glorious commencement, and once again offer my congratulations to USC’s newest alumni and their families… Edwin Saucedo, USC’s graduating student body president, sat down with the Los Angeles Times… Jorge Campos, a USC TRiO student who was previously homeless, was interviewed by our local ABC News affiliate, as he prepares to attend Harvard University this fall on a full scholarship.


USC alumnus Will Ferrell inspires graduates; Trustee Wallis Annenberg receives University Medallion; USC’s NAI praised by The New York Times

May 2017 Edition

I would like to begin this month’s letter by offering my heartfelt congratulations to USC’s newest class of graduates and their families. This year, the university awarded more than 15,000 degrees to extraordinarily talented individuals from all 50 states and more than 100 different nations… Our commencement speaker, actor Will Ferrell, drew international attention and an enthusiastic response from our graduates and families for his magnificently light-hearted speech… At last month’s Academic Honors Convocation, Wallis Annenberg—USC’s longest serving trustee—received the rarely awarded University Medallion.


Veterans Appreciation Dinner celebrates centennial anniversary of ROTC; Dean of Religious Life reflects USC’s spirit of inclusion

April 2017 Edition

I would like to begin this month’s letter by returning to a deeply moving evening from late March, when the USC community came together—for the seventh straight year—to honor our military service members and their families. This year’s gathering, an event we call the Veterans Appreciation Dinner, coincided with the centennial anniversary of USC’s ROTC program, and was made all the more special by the presence of a number of World War II veterans… Earlier this month, the Los Angeles Times published an excellent profile of USC’s dean of religious life, Varun Soni.


USC exceeds $6 billion fundraising goal 18 months ahead of schedule; USC generates $8 billion each year for California economy; USC delegation visits Taiwan

March 2017 Edition

As this month’s letter reaches you, the USC community is celebrating a very special milestone: the wonderful news that we have exceeded the original $6 billion goal for our fundraising campaign—18 months ahead of schedule! We have generated so much optimism, and so much momentum surrounding the work that we’re accomplishing, as well as for the important goals we have set for undergraduate scholarships, medical research, faculty programs and research, and other areas… The Los Angeles Business Journal recently reported on a study that found that every year USC generates $8 billion in economic activity… Last month, I led a delegation of USC trustees, deans, faculty, and senior academic leaders to Taiwan.


Former British Prime Minister speaks at USC; USC’s Neighborhood Academic Initiative praised; Strong USC presence at World Economic Forum

February 2017 Edition

Earlier this month, we welcomed former British Prime Minister David Cameron to our campus, as part of the USC President’s Distinguished Lecture Series… The Chronicle of Higher Education recently highlighted our award-winning Neighborhood Academic Initiative (NAI) among the four college-access programs that include a parent-education component, and which stand as role models for other community programs around the nation… USC was proud to host a Stem Cell Day of Discovery on our Health Sciences Campus earlier this month, drawing 500 local middle and high school students.


USC celebrates Rose Bowl championship; USC Shoah Foundation honors George Lucas and Mellody Hobson; USC boasts two Rhodes Scholars this year

January 2017 Edition

One month in to the new year, and at USC, we’re still smelling roses! Our last-second win against Penn State at the Rose Bowl will no doubt go into the history books as one of college football’s greatest games… In December, the USC Shoah Foundation honored humanitarians Mellody Hobson and George Lucas for their longstanding dedication to the foundation’s mission of education and tolerance, as well as their continued support of USC.


USC Stevens Hall opens; USC Village workers ring the Victory Bell; USC Thornton School of Music ranked among best in the nation

December 2016 Edition

Niki and I hope you are having a wonderful holiday season, and send you our very best wishes for a happy new year… Last month, we formally dedicated the new USC Stevens Hall for Neuroimaging, and our local NPR station marked its opening with an excellent story on the pioneering research of Professor Arthur Toga of the USC Stevens Neuroimaging and Informatics Institute… As construction on the new USC Village continues apace, we recently brought an old Trojan tradition to what-will-soon-be the newest addition to our campuses. The USC Village construction workers rang the Victory Bell, which USC has in its possession for the coming year—a special honor following our football win over UCLA.


USC Dornsife celebrates fifth anniversary of naming gift; Music icon Jimmy Iovine describes the vision for USC’s Iovine and Young Academy; USC ranked number one for public relations

November 2016 Edition

Niki and I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! We continued our tradition of spending the afternoon with USC students… Earlier this month, friends and supporters of the USC Dana and David Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences came together for a special evening to celebrate the five-year anniversary of the naming gift from humanitarians David and Dana Dornsife… The Wall Street Journal recently published an insightful interview with music industry icon Jimmy Iovine, in which he discussed the vision behind the USC Iovine Young Academy.