Dean Geoffrey Garrett
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
Teaching + Innovation
Experiential Learning Center
Open Expression Statement
BS Business Administration (BUAD)
BS Accounting (ACCT)
World Bachelor in Business (WBB)
BS Business of Cinematic Arts (BCA)
BS Artificial Intelligence for Business (BUAI)
Full-Time MBA (FTMBA)
Executive MBA (EMBA)
Part-Time MBA (MBA.PM)
International MBA (IBEAR)
Online MBA (OMBA)
MS Business Administration (MSBUSAD)
MS Business Analytics (MSBA)
MS Entrepreneurship + Innovation (MSEI)
MS Finance (MSF)
MS Global Supply Chain Management (MSGSCM)
MS Marketing (MSMKT)
MS Social Entrepreneurship (MSSE)
Master of Business for Veterans (MBV)
Master of Management Studies (MMS)
Master of Accounting (MAcc)
Master of Business Taxation (MBT)
Master of Business Taxation for Working Professionals (MBT.WP)
Data Sciences + Operations
Management + Organization
GC in Business Analytics
GC in Financial Analysis + Valuation
GC in Management Studies
GC in Marketing
GC in Optimization + Supply Chain Management
GC in Strategy + Management Consulting
GC in Sustainability + Business
GC in Technology Commercialization
GC in Library and Information Management – Online
Executive Education Redirect
Business Communication (BUCO)
Data Sciences and Operations (DSO)
Finance + Business Economics (FBE)
Leventhal School of Accounting (ACCT)
Lloyd Greif Center for Entrepreneurial Studies (BAEP)
Management and Organization (MOR)
Institutes + Centers
Peter Arkley Institute for Risk Management
Brittingham Social Enterprise Lab
Center for Investment Studies
Initiative on Digital Competition
Randall R. Kendrick Global Supply Chain Institute
Center for Effective Organizations
Lloyd Greif Center for Entrepreneurial Studies
VanEck Digital Assets Initiative
Institute for Outlier Research in Business
Center for Global Innovation
Neely Center for Ethical Leadership and Decision Making
Giving + Support
Alumni Engagement + Resources
Traveling the Path to Entrepreneurship
Marshall Alumna Sarah Weingust had solo female travelers in mind when she envisioned HostelPass.
HostelPass founder Sarah Weingust.
Sarah Weingust’s semester abroad was life changing. Not only did she discover that she wanted to live in London, but also she dreamed up a business idea that would take her there after graduating from USC Marshall.
“I’ve moved around a lot in my life,” said Weingust ’16, who was born in San Francisco and has lived in Massachusetts, Oregon, Los Angeles, and the Netherlands, “but London is the only place I’ve been where I have felt that I could stay forever, and I definitely wouldn’t have had the opportunity to learn that without studying abroad.”
After a semester at University College London, Weingust traveled to 11 countries, hopping on and off trains with the Eurail Pass. A bad experience with an Airbnb in a major Eastern European city got her thinking it would be great to have something like the Eurail Train Pass that worked for accommodations.
“I didn’t want anyone to have to go through what I went through — feeling unsafe at a stranger’s house in a new city,” she said. “I wanted to create a network of vetted, high-quality accommodation where any solo traveler would feel safe and any parent would be happy to know their child is staying. As much as HOSTELPASS is for everyone, I had solo female travelers in mind when I created it.”
When she got back to USC for her senior year, she added an entrepreneurship minor and started applying the concept for what became HostelPass in all of her classes. “I was able to test out my model with my exact target market (students), which meant my whole educational experience had useful real-world applications,” she said. “Thanks to my wonderful professors, I learned how to create a business model, make a pitch deck, do customer research, and network with the right people.”
“So far, the highlight of HostelPass has been using all of the lean-startup methods I’d learned at USC to pivot our model into what we are today, and to quickly see that idea catch on.”
— Sarah Weingust '16
Tapping USC’s Entrepreneurial Eco-System
Weingust, along with her housemate and fellow Marshall student Meir Razzon ’16 became business partners. They both received awards at the 2016 Marcia Israel Awards Banquet for their work on HostelPass. They also won second place in the Lloyd Greif Center for Entrepreneurship’s New Venture Seed Competition (NVSC).
“The NVSC helped me gain vital skills in public speaking and compile a compelling pitch deck, not to mention the $10,000 of pre-seed capital that ultimately led to the nearly $500,000 investment we’ve since raised,” Weingust said. “As HostelPass enters a new round of fundraising, I’m feeling confident and prepared, many thanks to my NVSC experience.”
“I left USC feeling like I had a serious advantage when it came to launching and running my business,” she added. “I have kept in touch with many of my professors, most of whom have now become brilliant mentors to me during my entrepreneurial journey.”
Pivoting for the Pandemic
The original concept for HostelPass as “the Eurail Pass for accommodation” evolved as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The HostelPass now offers digital discounts for Europe’s best hostels, tours, experiences, and more.
“As far as challenges go, I imagine the pandemic has been the biggest challenge for many founders on their venture journeys. It certainly was for us,” Weingust said. “The whole travel industry shut down, and many of our wonderful hostel partners had to close permanently.
“Part of the inspiration for the HostelPass was to revive post-pandemic travel and help to showcase and regenerate occupancy rates at these brilliant hostels that we love so much.”
She credits her training at USC Marshall for the successful pivot. “So far, the highlight of HostelPass has been using all of the lean-startup methods I’d learned at USC to pivot our model into what we are today, and to quickly see that idea catch on.”
Don’t Destroy Entrepreneurship With Poorly Designed Antitrust Legislation
DANIEL SOKOL, Carolyn Craig Franklin Chair in Law and affiliated professor of marketing, pens a piece for THE HILL questioning the efficacy of the recently proposed American Innovation and Choice Online Act (AICOA).
2023 USC Marshall Research Fair
Scholars present their latest research on the impacts of new technology — March 10 from 11:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. in the USC Hotel Ballroom.
Nadine Watt: On Leadership and Giving Back
If you’re a young woman looking to enter the real estate development side, Nadine Watt would love to hear from you.
Alumni Profile: Ben Frazer
Co-Founder of Highland Real Estate Partners, a vertically integrated manager of private real estate investments.
USC Marshall Honors Kevin Curry as the 2023 Food Industry Executive of the Year
The USC Marshall Food Industry Management (FIM) program will honor Kevin Curry as its 2023 Executive of the Year.