Not long ago, USD was abuzz with students taking finals, roommates saying goodbye and a general air of impending summer excitement. But the campus is relatively quiet now, minus the school year’s 7,800 graduate and undergraduate students running between dorms, the west parking lot, classes and, of course, Aromas.
Quiet, yes, but the school is still humming with activity if you know where to look. In addition to their role as faculty members during the academic year, USDâ€™s professors are encouraged to conduct research in their field outside of the classroom. In fact, many full time faculty â€” especially those in the science departmentsâ€” maintain their own working labs during the quieter summer sessions. In addition, some science students are required to spend a certain number of hours in the research lab for their major.
Jenny Wooley ‘10, an undergrad biochemistry major from Anchorage, Alaska, is working in a chemistry lab through the Summer Undergrad Research Experience. â€œThrough this opportunity Iâ€™m hoping to understand exactly what goes into running a full-time lab and scientific research. I hope to contribute to the pool of scientific knowledge through the research Iâ€™m conducting.â€
For other students, summer is the ideal time to take extra classes, or â€” in the case of Carl Johnson ‘10 â€” add a master’s degree. Johnson, an undergrad originally from Seattle, Wash., has decided to stay in San Diego this summer to take more accounting classes. â€œLife isÂ full of opportunities. Because I was able to identify thoseÂ opportunities so close to school that were right in line with my career goals, I believe I will get the best out of my summer by staying in San Diego,â€ says Johnson.
In addition to taking accounting classes that will count towards earning his master’s concurrently with his undergraduate degree, he’ll also be interning with Ernst & Young â€“ one of the â€œBig Fourâ€ accounting firms.
Between summer school, internships and on-campus jobs the students of USD are making the most of their summer break. With campus life turned down to a simmer for now, the university still maintains hot spots of activity, especially if you know where to look.Â
â€” Kendra Osburn ‘11