University of Southern California

Larissa Purnell
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Graduating Year
2016
Major
Business Administration

Areas of Interest at USC and Marshall:

  1. Pursuing Passions
  2. Growing as a leader
  3. Welcoming new experiences
  4. Embracing Diversity
  5. Valuing the Trojan Family

What Made You Choose to Attend USC Marshall?

In terms of classes, you start off with business courses during your freshman year, which is rare to find because most colleges do not allow you to take business courses until sophomore or junior year. Also, one of the biggest reasons why I chose USC over my other top choices was that Marshall offers a great opportunity to observe business abroad during spring break as a freshman through the GLP (Global Leadership Program) and LINC (Learning About International Commerce) programs.

Advice you wish you had known while applying to college:

I think the best advice I could give would be to open to new experiences and organizations – try everything at the beginning and then narrow it down to the few things that are time manageable and you’re passionate about because that will allow you to fully engage and move up in leadership at earlier stages than if you had started during sophomore or junior year.

USC activities/general hobbies: I firmly believe USC fosters an environment that encourages students to pursue activities that they are passionate about or have general interest in. For example, I’ve been able to continue my passion of playing my ukulele through a club called Remedy Through Music that is almost identical to a club I started in high school which brings its members to senior homes and hospitals and performs musical pieces for the patients to brighten their day. I’ve also found ways to stay connected with my faith through the Caruso Catholic Center. They have offered countless opportunities such as bible studies, homeless ministry, community dinners, and guest lectures that have helped me strengthen my relationship with God and the Catholic community. With more time in my schedule than I had throughout high school, I have been able to run for two different student government positions – VP of Community Outreach in the Residential Student Government and Director of Campus Outreach within the Marshall Business Student Government. When I have free time, I also love playing intramural tennis, running with the Marathon Team (fingers crossed I can get to the finish line in March), and curling up to read a good book recommended to me.

Why do you love Los Angeles?

  Los Angeles is a microcosm of the diversity represented in the United States and I find it so fascinating to interact with people from different cultures, backgrounds, ethnicities, and orientations on a daily basis. Furthermore, you can never get bored with all of the amazing sights, landmarks, and attractions here in LA, most of which are only a metro ride away. Finally, as a business student, I feel that the opportunities to get hands on experience in industries I’m most passionate about are easily accessible and ready for me to access - as long as I take the initiative to find them!

Share a definitive freshman moment at USC:

One of the biggest fears I had coming to USC was the probability of my voice being unheard in the sea of 38,000 students. I remember coming on campus during move in day and feeling so overwhelmed by how many unfamiliar faces passed me. After all the bustle of unpacking my things, saying the dreaded goodbyes to my parents, and attending the introductory meetings with the RA’s and faculty masters, I was too exhausted to mingle with everyone, so I pulled out my ukulele and started to play around. All of a sudden, I hear a couple girls outside my door and I turn to see their intrigued yet hesitant expressions. I invited them and after casual introductions, they began asking me questions about playing the ukulele and what songs I could play. Before I knew it, almost everyone on our floor began to trickle into my room, some with their cameras, some with their own instruments, all with an eagerness to take part in what seemed to be our first floor event. In the midst of all the excitement trying to find a song we all knew how to sing and play, I felt a wave of relief come over me as I realized that doing what I loved to do was what prompted others to notice me. To this day, that first night bonding with everyone in my dorm room serves to be my defining freshman moment and it emphasized three key points that have been notable to me throughout my Trojan experience: it inspired me to be ME and pursue my passions, it demonstrated the unique support and camaraderie of the Trojan Family, and it helped me realize that I am not insignificant despite the class size.

Favorite USC Marshall class:

BUAD 304 – Leading organizations. This class has definitely taught me a lot about myself and my strengths and weaknesses as a leader in addition to ways in recognizing personality types and leadership styles in others. Furthermore, the Experiential Learning Center (ELC) activities are interesting experiences to apply concepts learned in class and get to know classmates better.

 

Business Administration and Accounting , 2016
Business Administration , 2016
Business Administration , 2015
Business Administration , 2016
Business Administration , 2016
Business Administration and Accounting , 2014
Business Administration , 2015
Business Administration , 2015
Business Administration and Accounting , 2016
Business Administration and Environmental Science , 2014
Business Administration , 2016
Business Administration , 2015
Business Administration, Cinematic Arts (BCA) Emphasis , 2016
Business Administration , 2014
Accounting , 2015
Business Administration , 2015
Business Administration , 2016
Accounting , 2016
Business Administration and Accounting , 2015
Accounting , 2016
Business Administration, Management Emphasis , 2015
Business Administration , 2016
Business Administration , 2016
Business Administration and Political Science , 2015
Accounting , 2015
Business Administration , 2014
Business Administration , 2014
Business Administration , 2015
Accounting , 2015
Accounting Major, Pre-Law emphasis , 2015
Business Administration , 2013
Business Administration , 2014
Business Administration , 2015
Business Administration , 2015
Business Administration , 2015
Business Administration , 2014