Trojan Spotlight


Natasha Immaraj

Ashley Harlow
Sociology and Social Science with a minor in Nonprofits, Philanthropy, and Volunteerism
Banning, CA

Raquel Torres-Retana, Associate Dean, Student Affairs

Career Goals:

Become a professor

Nomination letter:

It is with complete enthusiasm that I submit to you this letter of recommendation for Ashley Harlow, to represent the Scholarly trait of a Trojan.

As most USC first-year students, Ashley arrived to the University as an academically strong student. As a first generation student from a working class community she had already developed a strong work-ethic, focusing attention to her academics, remaining committed to her student organizations and working to provide for herself.

Since arriving to USC, Ashley has grown passionate about education and social justice issues. She has a passion for learning about and taking action on issues of immigration, undocumented students and educational inequalities. Ashley has taken advantage of the many scholarly opportunities available at a research institution such as USC.

During the summer of 2011, Ashley had the opportunity to join a research team with the Psychology Department. It was a pleasure to see her interest in research grow and to have intellectual discussions about the need for research and the impact it has on practice and development. This experience sparked a new interest in Ashley as she can now envision herself conducting research and impacting others.

Ashley quickly directed her time and energy into finding new research opportunities where she can continue learning, exploring and contributing. During the 2011-2012 school year, Ashley applied for and was selected to participate in two research programs. During summer of 2012, she participated in the McNairs Program. In addition, she was recently selected for the Mellon Fellows program, also housed here at USC.

Ashley truly embodies the Trojan scholarly spirit. She is passionate about learning and contributing through research.

What does it mean to be a member of the Trojan Family?:

When I first attended USC, I thought that it was just a school. I thought I would go to classes, go home, and then do it all over again the next day. Immediately I realized how wrong I was. The sense of community I felt on campus is something that amazed me. Attending football games and seeing students, alumni, parents of USC students, etc. at the games and on campus resulted in me feeling a sense of unity that I have never felt before. Not only at football games, but when you find others that attended USC you almost feel an automatic connection with that person. We all try to support and help one other in any way possible.

The definition of being a member of the Trojan Family means making this commitment to be a part of the Trojan community. To be a part of the Trojan Family you make a commitment to best represent the University of Southern California to the best of your ability. It means taking the five traits of a Trojan-faithful, scholarly, skillful, courageous, and ambitious-and using them in your everyday life to become better individuals and make a difference in society.

To be a part of the Trojan Family means being a part of something bigger than myself and making the commitment to continue to work to help the Trojan network to prosper and flourish. I am proud of being a member of the Trojan family and this pride is due to the community and unity the Trojan Family has and the commitment each member feels to represent and help others that are fellow Trojans.

Trait Definitions

Faithful: Staying true to oneself and loyal to USC and its ideals and values.
Scholarly: Dedicated to the pursuit of knowledge inside and outside the classroom, through research, free inquiry, and informed risk-taking.
Skillful: Striving for excellence in developing and refining one's talents and abilities.
Courageous: Daring to fight for one's values and beliefs, even in the face of adversity.
Ambitious: Committed to exercising the entrepreneurial spirit in order to make meaningful contributions to society.

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