Traditions at USC


USC is well-known for its school pride and Trojan spirit, yet many students often ask me, “Does USC have any traditions?”  My answer?  There are TONS of traditions at USC!  Many of these traditions can be seen at sporting events, while others take place on campus in the form of student organization competitions.

While our campus is looking forward to celebrating Thanksgiving with loved ones later this week, we are also enjoying Troy Week.  Troy Week is a celebration of school spirit leading up to the annual football game against cross-town rival UCLA.  During this week, a student organization called the Trojan Knights stand guard 24/7 at the beloved statue of Tommy Trojan while being on the lookout for any mischievous Bruin fans. In past years, they have encountered Bruin fans with paintball guns, fraternity brothers with cans of paint, and even an overhead helicopter one year.  The annual Conquest spirit event took place Monday, which included a performance by the band Cobra Starship and the opportunity to ride a ferris wheel and enjoy a food fair, among other activities.  In recent years, bands such as Third Eye Blind and The Fray have also headlined Conquest.

Songfest is another long-standing tradition on campus that involves many university organizations to compete for the “Tommy” trophy and other awards.  This song and dance competition happens during the spring and has been held around Los Angeles at places like the Hollywood Bowl, the Greek Theatre, the Shrine Auditorium, and also on campus at Bovard Auditorium.  This annual event brings together students from residence halls, fraternities and sororities, the USC Marching Band, the USC Song Leaders, the Trojan Dance Force and various other campus organizations.  Last year’s theme was “Drawn to Action,” which focused on comic books and superheroes.  The funds raised from Songfest benefit Troy Camp, which is the largest philanthropy at USC and sends kids from the LA area to summer camp for an entire week.

There are many other traditions, however one of the first experiences for new students at USC is Welcome Week.  From Move-In Day to a pancake breakfast prior to the New Student Convocation, Welcome Week brings together incoming students to help them meet one another and get acclimated to campus and the University.  Students can attend the involvement fair to meet representatives from hundreds of student organizations on campus, take part in a campus-wide scavenger hunt, take a free shuttle to Venice Beach, or attend the Welcome Back Rally and Concert.  When it comes to welcoming students to campus, USC takes no shortcuts.

For now, I’ll leave you with one last tradition in the spirit of Troy Week: the USC fight song.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!