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Life as a senior studying engineering at USC is incredibly busy. But it’s so fun! I thrive off of a full calendar and a packed to-do list. 


College is great because you get to fill your days with anything you want to do. Whether it be going to the gym, taking a full course load, or taking time to watch TV with your friends, your day is everything you make it. 


It definitely took me some time to determine what sort of schedule and volume of commitments worked best for me. I’m going to share what my schedule looks like on a “regular day” in college to give you all a glimpse into one example of a USC student. 


Welcome to my Tuesday during the fifth week of classes!


9:30 AM: Wake up and make breakfast!

I made a bowl of oatmeal with berries and some almond butter. My classes start later today, so that means I get to sleep in a bit longer. 


10:30 AM: Get ready for the day

I like to take some time at the beginning of the day to check my schedule and plan out my day. I have a good amount of things to get done, and I want to make sure I don’t forget anything. 


11:00 AM: Rock climbing

I went rock climbing with one of my friends before my class. This was actually my first time at this climbing gym, and I ended up getting a membership. I always try to find ways to be “active”, even if it’s not lifting weights at the gym or running. I also like trying new things, so climbing is great. 


1:00 PM: Make lunch and get ready for class

I have my first class of the day at 2 PM, so I like to make sure my laptop and ipad are charged and I have a snack packed. 


2:00 PM: Class 1 – ISE 435 Discrete Systems Simulations 

Discrete simulation is my first class of the day. It’s a class that expands on statistics and modeling courses that I’ve taken a year prior. We are using a statistical software called Arena to build simulation models, so we worked on that in class today. 


4:00 PM: Class 2: ISE 470 Human-Computer Interface Design

My second class of the day is a super cool design course for ISEs. There are 7 students in this class, so it feels more like a discussion or group project. Today we discussed detailed task analysis and different ways to document the use of an interface. I worked in a group to discuss the tasks a user would complete in using a new application to organize and book a vacation. 


6:10 PM: Make dinner and relax

After four hours of class, I needed some time to decompress and turn in any assignments I worked on in class. I made dinner, talked to my roommates, and read a bit of a book. 


8:00 PM: Lava lab meeting

I recently joined Lava lab as a product manager in this semester’s cohort. It’s a startup incubator that matches you in teams of co-founders. Today we listened to a speaker outline the value of start-ups and the rest of the semester. The product managers also discussed best practices for leading a group and being great teammates. I love these meetings and this group of students.  


10:30 PM: Bed-time!

I get a non-negotiable 8 hours of sleep every night to stay healthy and alert during the day. That means it was bed-time after my meeting. That was my day!


Maya Neuenschwander

MAJOR: Industrial and Systems Engineering YEAR: Class of 2024 HOMETOWN: Hudson, Wisconsin PRONOUNS: she/her/hers I host the Viterbi Voices podcast, and I am involved in Lava Lab, a student-run start-up incubator at USC. Outside of school, I have my own photography business and enjoy hiking and the outdoors.