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It was the first week of classes. There was almost nothing on my agenda, but I was ready to explore the depths of college. One of the biggest components in this mission was getting involved in different groups and organizations. The beauty of the first few weeks of freshman year, is having plenty of time to explore what I want to be a part of.

Every semester, USC Viterbi offers an involvement fair, where all Viterbi clubs participate and showcase what their club does. I remember being fascinated by the Formula SAE team’s racecar, Aerodesign team’s model planes, and all the 3D-printed projects 3D4E had. Being interested in all these organizations, I filled out their interest forms and attended their first meetings. Within a couple of weeks of being involved with each of these organizations, I decided that I wanted to spend my time with 3D4E since it aligned closely with my passions. Separately from these Viterbi organizations, the school in general holds an involvement fair for all clubs. I joined the Coptic Club (a cultural club) and the spikeball club. It was a really fun experience of walking around Trousdale looking at all the different possible clubs I could join. I signed interest forms for many more clubs, but these were the ones I ended up being most interested in.

So by the end of Freshman year I was involved in one design team, a part of a cultural club, and a recreational sport club. This, however, did not stop me from wanting to join other organizations. Beginning of my sophomore year, I was interested in Greek life and participated in the rush process. Although the experience was one that I won’t forget, I decided Greek life was not for me by the end of the process. I think one important takeaway is you do not have to join a house if you rush. Instead you can use it as a time to get to know the people at the house better before deciding if it is an organization you want to join. Instead of Greek life, I joined another recreational club, the Surf Team. I got really into surfing over the summer and wanted a place where I could meet other surfers. The team was super cool since it helped with carpools to the beach and had beach days every Sunday! Later sophomore year, I joined Tamid, a consulting and investing group. This club is one that satisfied my general business interests.

Now as a junior, I look back at the way I got involved. I started by joining organizations that I was interested in and as I got older, joined organizations that matched my changing interests. The awesome thing about USC is you can continue to join clubs no matter what year you are. If you wanted to hold off on joining clubs the first semester, there is no pressure to join right away. If you want to try a million things you can and then decide which ones you want to be serious about. With the hundreds of club options at USC, you’re guaranteed to find both the club and group of people that is meant for you!

Steven Louis