Hogwarts, is that you? As I stepped into the new McCarthy dining hall, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of awe as I ate my freshly made crepe with my new floormates. Located in the newly constructed USC Village, the dining hall is just one small piece of the sprawling hub full of amazing new eats and housing for both Honors freshmen and upperclassmen. In addition to being a frequent visitor to Trader Joe’s and Target, I have tried every single new restaurant the Village has to offer to date. Some others will be open by the end of the semester, but I have to say a grain bowl at CAVA or some Sunlife acai are my go-tos. A couple of weeks ago, I also got Greenleaf with some friends, and must admit that the Trojan Bowl brought new purpose to my life. An afternoon at Baked Bear for a classic feel-good ice-cream sandwich didn’t hurt either.
While it does seem that I am motivated by food (which is true), there are other aspects to the Village that definitely make me grateful that such an amazing addition to our campus opened my freshman year. There is a CorePower yoga studio, and going with a buddy for a morning session of hot yoga really helps me start the day feeling refreshed. If you just want to go for a general workout, the new gym at the Village also has amazing facilities– whether you’re doing cardio or strength training. I even know a couple of friends who just love running around the perimeters of the Village block to start their morning.
As I sit in the outdoor sitting area listening to the pitter-patter of the fountain, I also must profess my love for this study space. If you enjoy doing your work outside, the common area at the center of the Village is definitely the way to go. Complete with the sunny warmth of the Southern California weather, there’s really a place for everyone at the USC Village. From day one at USC only two months ago, my freshman year experience has been marked by the amazing things the Village has offered me: becoming a place to work, exercise, and hang out with my friends. I feel so lucky that this center of community just a step away from main campus will be here for me during my entire college career, as well as for future students to come.