Each year, USC programs and faculty research are highlighted in print, broadcast and online stories throughout the world. Highlights of recent news coverage are compiled by USC Media Relations.
USC in the News 5/3/2012
Los Angeles Times featured a study by Sergio Sanudo-Wilhelmy of the USC Dornsife College and colleagues, finding that the level of metal contaminants in Southern California's coastal waters has dropped as much as 400-fold since the 1970s. "We were expecting them to be lower, but not that low," Sanudo-Wilhelmy said. The researchers credit the change to the 1972 Clean Water Act and the phase-out of leaded gasoline. The research was also covered by a second Los Angeles Times story, United Press International and The Atlantic.
The Chronicle of Philanthropy featured the Hollywood, Health & Society program at the USC Annenberg School's Norman Lear Center. The program has taken Hollywood producers and writers abroad to meet with global health experts who inform them about social causes. "We inspire writers and we inform them, but we don't tell them what to write," said Sandra de Castro Buffington of the Annenberg School. The article reported that over the last two years the program has helped shape more than 300 stories on TV series, publicizing health issues like HIV.
ABC News' "Good Morning America" featured a study by Travis Longcore of the USC Dornsife College and colleagues, finding that 6.8 million birds are killed each year by collisions with radio towers. "The bulk of the mortalities happen during the annual migration," Longcore said. Yahoo! News also covered the research.
NPR's "Tell Me More" interviewed Jane Junn of the USC Dornsife College about her research on Asian American voters. In 2008, Junn and colleagues surveyed 5,000 Asian Americans and found that large numbers of them were independent voters. She said that between 1992 and 2008, the proportion of Asian Americans voting Democratic roughly doubled from 31 percent to 62 percent. Vietnamese Americans are more likely to vote Republican, but as a whole, "Asian-American voters today are much more Democratic," Junn said.
The Sacramento Bee highlighted the USC Rossier School/PACE survey, in which 67 percent of respondents agreed that California should spend more on education. However, only 48 percent agreed if it meant their taxes will go up. The Bee mentioned that Dan Schnur of the USC Dornsife College will present findings from the poll at a forum hosted by Policy Analysis for California Education (PACE).
Foreign Affairs ran an op-ed by Jacques Hymans of the USC Dornsife College about North Korea's failed missile launch last month. Hymans wrote that nuclear proliferation has slowed down immensely in the recent past, especially in authoritarian regimes. "In such dysfunctional states, the quality of technical workmanship is low, there is little coordination across different technical teams, and technical mistakes lead not to productive learning but instead to finger-pointing and recrimination," he wrote. The Faster Times cited Hymans' op-ed.
The Huffington Post featured USC's Institute for Creative Technologies and its virtual humans designed to empathize with, understand and exhibit emotions. William Swartout of the USC Viterbi School said that one application for the research is to help Army soldiers rehearse missions in advance. "Maybe the next metaphor for interacting with computers is going to be something a lot like virtual humans," Swartout said. "We're already starting to see that with things like Siri."
Fast Company featured Applied Proteomics, a company co-founded by David Agus of the Keck School of USC. The story noted that Agus leads the prostate cancer center and the molecular medicine center at the Keck School, and that his company analyzes proteins in blood, saliva and other fluids in order to diagnose diseases. In the future, Agus hopes to use the company's protein data to understand why cells turn cancerous and what treatments are best suited to specific cancers.
Los Angeles Times quoted USC Athletic Director Pat Haden about the death of USC alumnus Junior Seau, who played football for USC and later the NFL. "We are tremendously saddened to hear this news and our hearts go out to his family and children," Haden said. "Junior Seau was one of the greatest legends in USC football history. He will always be remembered by USC as The Original No. 55."
The Washington Post, in an Associated Press story, quoted Jody Agius Vallejo of the USC Dornsife College about Cinco de Mayo's meaning for Mexican Americans.
The Washington Post, in a Bloomberg News story, quoted Edward Kleinbard of the USC Gould School about Mitt Romney's proposed tax plan.
USA Today quoted David Carter of the USC Marshall School about how suspensions affect sports players in the long run, affecting their marketing and branding.
Bloomberg News quoted David Carter of the USC Marshall School about sports players supporting presidential candidates.
Hispanic Business cited Jack Lerner of the USC Gould School about Pinterest and its potential copyright liabilities.
The Orange County Register quoted David Caron of the USC Dornsife College about an acid found in recent water samples.
L.A. Weekly quoted Gary Painter of the USC Lusk Center for Real Estate about the Los Angeles rental market.
KNX-AM interviewed David Carter of the USC Marshall School about a proposed lease between USC and the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum Commission.
News at a Glance
Deseret News highlighted a study by Diane Winston of the USC Annenberg School and a University of Akron colleague, finding a large gap in understanding between reporters and news consumers on the issue of religion.
The Reporter highlighted a study by Dowell Myers of the USC Price School and John Pitkin of USC's Population Dynamics Research Group estimating that California's population will grow at a much slower rate than previously predicted.