I recall being thirteen years old when I visited my oldest cousin in college. I couldn’t wait to hear stories about what crazy college life is like. In Portland, Connecticut, where very little changes and everyone is white and middle-class, the prospect of college was the golden opportunity to leave small-town life behind. However, I recall being shocked at how serious my cousin Jillian, a sophomore at Syracuse University, was about homesickness. At the time, I figured that girls were just more sensitive to that kind of stuff than guys.
Fast-forward to being seventeen and applying for colleges. Aiming for a degree in Theatre, I auditioned for four east coast schools that would keep me close to home and one out in the other worldly west – the University of Southern California. I had no intention of actually going to school in Los Angeles but figured that my application would give my family a good scare and give me a good fantasy to get through the last years of high school.
As luck would have it, USC offered me enough financial aid to make rejecting this school impossible. Life got real; I shipped out in August of 2008 to see what LA had to offer.
Have you ever wandered around USC and thought “I wish there was an easy way to get around campus without walking or biking” or “I need to print something out but don’t know where” or “I NEED COFFEE but do not have time to stand in line”? Well, here are some USC life hacks that will make your life here a little bit easier.
1. Life: “I wish there was an easy way to get to my house and back to campus without walking or biking.”
Hack: If you live near campus, USC offers a shuttle that runs every 30 minutes. Just wait at a designated bus stop and a USC bus will pick you up and take you to the stop closest to your destination. The A route runs during the school year but the C route runs all year long. Check the link below to find their stops!
There were a couple murmurs, but no one raised their voice. It was a warm August night, way too warm for the 50 or so of us to be learning a hip hop dance on the third floor of a parking structure and yet, there we were. With sweat dripping down everyone’s faces, everyone seemed focused on learning the audition piece, but no one seemed particularly frustrated. Everyone except for me, that is.
Brows furrowed and lips pursed in irritation, I probably did not look approachable by any means. I had danced all throughout high school, even performing at pep rallies in front of hundreds of students, but, at the time of this audition, I hadn’t danced for two years and it was hitting me pretty hard that my skills had turned rusty. Even though it was the first of three audition days for USC’s competitive dance team, Chaotic 3, and we had two more days to practice the dance before the actual audition, my heart sank as unflagging doubt seized and took over my initial hopes of making the team.
I contemplated not going through with the final audition. I discussed it with multiple people, complaining about how hard the piece was, and voicing my doubts. However, something told me not to give up that easily. I was a transfer student who fought for my admission to USC and I was determined to make the most of my two years as a Trojan. In my head, I imagined myself being on a USC dance team and I knew that I would hate myself forever if I didn’t at least try. So for the next two days, I practiced the dance feverishly, watched the video of the choreographer a million times, and performed it in front of any and every mirror that I came upon. I wanted to impress the team more than ever. Continue reading “And 1, 2, 3, and 4. Any questions?”→
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