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Graduation and Retention Network

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Academic Resources

You don't have to guess your way through college. This information will help you navigate USC and help you better understand the resources available to you as a student. Don't be afraid to ask for help; everyone on campus is here to help you succeed.

Office of Student Advocacy

Sometimes, things don’t go according to plan. An illness keeps you out of class. A family emergency requires you to be away from campus. You have a concern, but you’re not sure who to tell. Maybe you have a problem you’ve tried to solve, but you’re stumped about what to do next. The Office of Student Advocacy can help.

How to Communicate with Faculty and Staff

Office Hours

Office hours are scheduled times, outside of class, that professors set aside to meet with students.  This time can be used to discuss course material, your progress in class, or any concerns you may have.  A professor’s office hours will be listed on your course syllabus. Meeting a professor during office hours is a great way for your faculty to get to know you!


Communication with your professors should be professional and succinct. Use a clear subject line and be sure to email from your University email account and include the course number and the section you are enrolled. Start your email greeting with "Hello" or "Dear Dr." or "Dear Professor." Make sure to review your syllabus before emailing your professor with a question. Chances are the answer you are looking for can be found there. Example: 

Dear Dr. Jones,

My name is Jamie Smith and I am in ENGL101 section 100. I have a question about ...


Help with Your Classes

Student Success Center

The Student Success Center is a comprehensive one-stop-shop for academic support services on campus, and is located in the Thomas Cooper Library. All of their programs and initiatives are free to undergraduate students. They can help with academic support (including tutoring and supplemental instruction), financial literacy and planning, and lots of other topics. 

Writing Center

The Writing Center is committed to helping students at any stage of the writing process become better writers and is located on the 7th floor of the Byrnes building. They can help you understand your assignment, outline and organize, develop a thesis statement and conclusion, and convey your ideas with clarity. 

While You are a Student

University Advising Center

The University Advising Center helps you with academic advising support and coaching that guides progression towards completing your degree and is located in the Close-Hipp Building. Your academic advisor is assigned to you by your college, and will help you plan your course schedule. You can also talk to them about changing majors and/or colleges. They also have services for transfer students, and offer academic coaching to help you find a major.

Education Abroad

The Education Abroad Office (formerly known as Study Abroad) can help you see the world! The EA Office is located on the 4th floor of the Close-Hipp building. There are short- and long-term study abroad options to consider.

Office of Undergraduate Research

The Office of Undergraduate Research is located in Legare College. The staff can help you get started by identifying a research question, finding a research mentor, and apply for research funding.

Graduation with Leadership Distinction

The Center for Integrative and Experiential Learning, formerly USC Connect, is the home for Graduation with Leadership Distinction and can be found in Legare College. GLD will help you synthesize your in- and out-of-the-classroom experiences in a variety of pathways.

Division of IT

The Division of IT can help you troubleshoot any tech problems you may be having. Microsoft Office 365 is available for free for as long as you are a student at the university. There are other student discounts available for hardware and software.


There’s more to USC libraries than just printing and coffee! The expert staff can help you with research, find the best sources, find sources from other libraries, plus many other services. You can borrow technology like iPads, laptops, and more.

Student Disability Resource Center

The Student Disability Resource Center helps to ensure that students with disabilities receive reasonable accommodations. You must register with the office in order to utilize their services, which include requesting accommodations to help you succeed in your classes. The main SDRC office is in the Close-Hipp building.


First-Gen Resources from your Academic College

Arnold School of Public Health
College of Arts and Sciences
College of Education Apple Core program
College of Engineering and Computing
College of Hospitality, Retail and Sports Management
College of Information and Communications
College of Nursing
College of Pharmacy
College of Social Work
Darla Moore School of Business Rising Scholars program
Honors College
School of Music


Looking Towards the Future

Career Center

The Career Center, located in the Thomas Cooper Library, can help you learn more about your career interestsdevelop professional skillsgain experience, and land a job after graduation. The staff can also help walk you through how to gain an internship or co-op to cultivate skills that reach beyond the classroom.

If your plans include law school, medical school, or pursuing other graduate school options, the Office of Pre-Professional and Graduate School Advising will help set you on the right path. They can assist you with the application process and provide other tools and resources to aid in the decision-making process.

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