Opened as a residential college in 2012, the South Residential College includes four traditional-style residence halls: Marks Tower, Pardee Tower, Marks Hall and Trojan Hall. South Residential College is conveniently located near the Doheny & Leavey Libraries, Tutor Campus Center, important campus service departments, several popular classroom buildings, and McCarthy Quad, a great place to relax and enjoy great Los Angeles weather. A signature of this residential area is its close-knit community; many describe South as being a true “family.”
The South Residential Colleges are supported by an engaging team of faculty and staff who endeavor to create a vibrant community where emphasis is placed on the transition to college and exploring USC’s First Year Experience programs.Programming provided by faculty and staff emphasizes personal growth and determining one’s best pathway for leadership as a USC student and future graduate.
The Faculty in Residence for South Residential College reside in Marks Hall, Pardee Tower, and Trojan Hall and take the lead in creating an environment conducive to student learning and social engagement. Residents are encouraged to attend FIR events and participate in faculty-student interaction outside the classroom. Students in South have always benefited from the sense of belonging that occurs within these facilities which offer the smallest floor communities at USC.
South Residential College Staff
Residential College Coordinator
South Residential College
My name is Andrea Valenzuela I am the Residential College Coordinator for South Residential College. I am from East Los Angeles, California. I received my B.A. in Latin American Iberian Studies, with a Black Studies Minor from the University of California, Santa Barbara. I then graduated with a Masters in Postsecondary Administration and Student Affairs from USC’s Rossier School of Education. During my graduate work, I served as a graduate assistant in Residential Education. It was here at USC that I gained my professional foundation. As a first generation college student, I am passionate about issues of access and retention in higher education, social justice education, and serving my community.
After receiving my graduate degree I traveled to Mexico, where I lived for two years to fulfill a Fulbright grant as an English Teaching Assistant. My experience in Mexico was amazing. I lived in the small city of Tulancingo in the state of Hidalgo. I taught English to university students at the Universidad Tecnológica de Tulancingo, and volunteered at a local high school to promote higher education to first generation, low‐income Mexican students. I had the opportunity to travel all around Mexico and fell more in love with the history, culture and beautiful people.
Graduate Residential College Coordinator
Sierra Burton is a former NCAA Division 1 student-athlete who transferred to and graduated from USC with a Bachelor’s degree in Neuroscience and Honors in Multimedia Scholarship through Media Arts and Practice from the USC School of Cinematic Arts. While at USC, she spent a summer as an Orientation Advisor, was a Resident Assistant for two years, a student Manager at Lyon Recreation Center, and served two years as a student-manager for USC Men’s and Women’s Swimming & Diving. As a Resident Assistant, Sierra developed a strong passion for student-development and thrives on creating valuable experiences for students in order to help them achieve their academic, professional, and personal goals. She is currently in her second year at USC Rossier where she is pursuing an M.Ed. in Post-secondary Administration and Student Affairs. Sierra loves all things USC; she has been a die-hard USC Football fan since the days of Matt Leinart. When she isn’t at a USC Football game, Sierra is active within the animal rights community as a vegan food photographer in the Los Angeles area. She enjoys photography, food adventures, trips to the beach, the Rich Roll podcast, and spending as much time as possible with her cat, Nala.
Faculty in Residence, Marks Hall
Associate Professor, Sociology & Gender Studies
Tim Biblarz is Associate Professor of Sociology & Gender Studies, and will serve as Chair of the Dornsife Department of Sociology beginning Fall, 2016. He has served as director of graduate studies, department chair, president of Dornsife’s Faculty Council and, currently, faculty head of South Residential College. Tim’s teaching and research explores causes and consequences of social inequalities in the United States over time, with an emphasis on the diversification of family life and intergenerational relationships. Dr. Biblarz’s articles have focused on how new family forms have influenced children’s experiences of upward mobility, how changing gender role attitudes have affected intimate relationships, and how the sexual orientations of parents have mattered (or not) for children’s wellbeing. Dr. Biblarz has published in the American Sociological Review, American Journal of Sociology, Social Forces, and other journals, and is co-author of How Families Still Matter (Cambridge University Press). Tim has received honors for his teaching and research, including USC’s General Education Teaching Award, and two Best Article awards from the American Sociological Association.
Tim’s favorite part of his job is mentoring students in their pursuit of their own best visions of themselves. When not tooling around on one of his six Kindles late at night, Tim can be found helping his own college kids with their homework, or estimating models on survey data with a hot cup of one of his favorite Seattle coffees nearby. Fun fact: Tim and Chrissy’s daughter Veronica is a USC student, and their son Jimmy goes to Harvard.
Faculty In Residence, Pardee Tower
Assistant Professor, Clinical Occupational Therapy
Myka Winder, OTD, OTR/L is a Resident Faculty member in Pardee Tower in the South Residential College. For the past five years, she has worked as an Assistant Professor of Clinical Occupational Therapy in the Mrs. T.H. Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy. She teaches courses in neuroscience, quantitative research and evidence-based practice, medical terminology, and history. Myka attended USC for her undergraduate and graduate degrees and has graduated from USC three times! As a loyal South alumna, she lived in Pardee Tower during her freshman year, studying neuroscience and English as double majors. She is currently a clinician at the USC Occupational Therapy Faculty Practice and primarily works with college students on lifestyle management, including time and stress management. She really enjoys living and working with college students in the residential college and in her faculty position. Myka brings in fellow USC alumni as guests to South Area’s Tuesday Nights with the Faculty dinner series to discuss their paths after graduating from USC, and she enjoys taking students on outings in Los Angeles, the place where she has lived the longest!
Joshua West is Wilford and Daris Zinsmeyer Early Career Chair in Marine Studies and an associate professor of earth sciences in USC Dornsife. His research focuses on how atmospheric CO2, global climate, and life have evolved over the millions of years of Earth’s history. He works to understand how erosional processes at the Earth’s surface shape the environment that sustains life while simultaneously generating deadly natural hazards. He earned his bachelor’s degree in geology and geophysics from Yale University, and both master’s in geography and PhD in earth sciences from University of Cambridge. West teaches and leads research groups with USC undergraduate, graduate and postdoc scholars and considers his work with students one of the most inspiring aspects of his career.
South Signature Events
College Access Day
College Access Day is a tradition of South Area and has been put on for the past 4 years. This day is dedicated to providing local high students with the knowledge about the college admission process, academic expectations, and life outside of the classroom. South Area partners Rossier School of Education as well as other campus organizations to make this a truly impact t 160 High School Students. USC students are able to mentor and guide these students throughout the day as they share some of their college life experiences.
Tunnel of Oppression
The Tunnel is an active, immersive, and simulated program that allows individuals and groups to take a guided tour through different rooms that introduce them to systems and cycles of oppression (racism, classism, ableism, homophobia, sexism, etc.) with the end goal being an engaging and educational experience for all attendees.
South Faculty Dinner Series
Every Tuesday, the faculty in South Residential College bring in guest speakers to educate the students on topics ranging from playing collegiate sports at a Division I institution, to marketing and branding oneself in the business industry. Some featured guest lecturers include USC Provost, Dr. Michael Quick, and members of the USC Football Team, Adoree Jackson and Cody Kessler. These dinners are cost free for all participants and feature food from local eateries.