Essential Guides
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Myron Goodman, molecular biologist USC Professors: Jascha Heifetz, Gregor Piatigorsky, and William Primrose Genevieve Giuliano
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Essential Guide for New Faculty
and Discovering Los Angeles

Welcome to USC! We hope that this document will help you get your career and life in Los Angeles off to a great start. As a new USC faculty member, you will find it very useful to also read the Essential Guide for All Faculty which describes your responsibilities, explains teaching and research resources at USC, and provides other helpful information relating to your success at USC.

Much useful information is contained in other Essential Guides on the Faculty Portal:

In addition, if you are an assistant professor on the tenure-track, check out these pages:

On this page, you find find tips and information about:
Getting Started at USC
Discovering Los Angeles
Discovering Neighborhoods and Buying a Home
Schools for Kids
Life on Campus
Cultural Opportunities
Spousal/Partner Hiring

Relocation advice

Quest and First Mobility are alternative relocation assistance services with which the university contracts. They can provide community information, information on real estate, schools, childcare, eldercare, transportation, diversity, cultural amenities, spiritual communities, recreation, entertainment, etc. For information on the relocation services, contact your dean's office or the Center for Work and Family Life.

Getting Started at USC

Discovering Los Angeles

Orientation Guides and Getting Around

First, go to our own College page Life in L.A. Getting to know LA and all that it has to offer is made much easier by some of the useful guides and books on the city. Check out online and print sources like:

Getting Around

  • The Thomas Guide (Street maps of Los Angeles) provides complete coverage of every street in Los Angeles.
  • AAA webpages can also come in very handy when you want to get directions on how to get from one place to another.
  • For live information on traffic conditions on freeways, other highways, and local streets, see the links at the bottom of the Faculty Portal homepage. Although LA's weather is remarkably good, the weather changes even here! You can find out what the local conditions will be at link at the same place.

Some Local Publications

Discovering Neighborhoods and Buying a Home

  • Los Angeles is an amalgamation of numerous and distinctive neighborhoods with their own personality and charm. If you would like a referral to employee relocation services to advise you on neighberhoods, school districts, and home buying, contact the Center for Work and Family Life.Books like LA Access can help you sort out which neighborhood is right for you.
  • Newcomer's Handbook for Moving to and Living in Los Angeles
  • The California Real Estate Center provides helpful information on buying a home in the Los Angeles Metropolitan area.
  • Buying a house in Los Angeles can be made easier through down payment assistance and housing subsidies offered by the USC Credit Union. New faculty should also see their Deans for additional information on housing assistance.
  • The USC Credit Union is a great place for help with numerous types of loans.

Schools for Kids

The following websites and books also help new faculty find schools that will best fit the needs of their children:

Life on Campus

  • USC is a hub of cultural activity. Check out information on music , theatre , lectures , exhibits , art and sports right here on campus.
  • The University Park Campus is home to several recreation and athletic facilities including the Lyon Center, McDonalds Swim Stadium, Intramural Field, Cromwell Track and Field, McAlister (North Campus) Field, Figueroa Recreation center, and the Physical Education Building. Lyon Center and McDonalds Swim Stadium are fully accessible.
  • The USC website also contains other useful information including Campus Views & History, things at the University Park Campus (includes places to eat and shop), the Health Sciences Campus: (includes places to eat and shop), and USC Community
  • There are a number of services on campus , including the USC Pharmacy, Copy Center, Computer Store, Bookstore, Kinkos and others.

Cultural Opportunities

Although your life at USC will likely occupy much of your time, be sure to take advantage of the many cultural and leisure activities available in the LA Metropolitan area.

Highlighted Events

Highlighted Museums

Neighborhood Museums

More Museums & Venues

Disclaimer: This guide is for information only and is intended as a helpful set of links to the Faculty Handbook and other University Policies. It does not constitute official University policy, nor do linked pages, except for the Faculty Handbook and the Policies web page. Send suggestions for additional resources you would like to see listed to the Office of Faculty Affairs.