Home sweet home: A guide to housing for USC students

Although freshmen, spring admits and transfer students may have just settled into their residential colleges and apartments, the looming prospect of finding housing for the 2018-19 academic year is fast approaching. But there is no need to fear: USC has housing options to suit all different sets of student living needs, price ranges and special interests.

USC Village

USC Village is a popular choice for undergraduates, with its new facilities and a variety of amenities. Photo courtesy of USC News.

The housing complex has approximately 2,000 spots open for returning students. From lofts with kitchenettes to full-sized apartments with living rooms, USC Village has something for everyone. A space in the complex can range from $3,250 per semester to rent a two-bedroom, four-person loft to $6,590 for a single in a two-bedroom apartment. All contracts include a partial meal plan, which can be used at dining halls.

Building 6, located in the southwest corner, is home to Cale and Irani Residential Colleges, open to all upperclassmen. Cale Residential College offers programming for students who are interested in learning about global issues and international relations. Irani offers workshops and activities in performance science for students who want to improve their leadership skills. Cale and Irani is also a great choice for students who like to frequent the gym as the USC Village Fitness Center is right under the residential apartments.

Priam Residential College, a special community for innovation and design students, is just across from the main campus. A second-floor patio overlooks the main plaza, and Wahlburgers, the newest hot spot at USC Village, is located on the first floor of Building 7. Trejo’s Tacos and Solé Bicycles are also in the building.

A little over 350 spots are available for sophomores, juniors and seniors in Building 8. Bohnett Residential College programming focuses on social entrepreneurship and seeking solutions to improve socioeconomic conditions in communities, while Nemirovsky Residential College for Sustainability encourages eco-friendly living. Amenities include Starbucks and CAVA on the first floor of the building, and an outdoor lounge on the second floor.

Cowlings and Ilium offer the widest selection of room types. As the largest structure in USC Village, it provides housing to 700 students. Located right above Target Express, Trader Joe’s, Core Power Yoga and the Department of Public Safety office, the competition for a spot in Building 9 will be fierce. Cowlings Residential College for Arts and Cultures will provide opportunities to explore Los Angeles. The new Ilium Sophomore Honors Residential College connects symbolically with a bridge to the freshman McCarthy Honors Residential College. Only 350 spots are available in Ilium, and hopeful residents must complete an application process consisting of five essays.

Main USC Campus

Other living options include Parkside Apartments and Webb Tower.

Located on W. 9th St. right across from Parkside Dining Hall, the six-story Parkside Apartments is home to the Shalom and Muslim special interest communities. Both studio and apartment floor plans are available.

Webb Tower, on W. 34th St., provides 14 floors of undergraduate housing. With only eight apartments per floor, inhabitants will get to know their neighbors very quickly. Although West Residential College doesn’t have its own dining hall, USC’s newest Starbucks is located right under King Hall, and the USC Village Dining Hall is only a short walk away. Not to mention, it’s the closest housing complex to the Lyon Recreation Center and Uytengsu Aquatic Center.

Off-campus Apartments

Annenberg House, Cardinal ‘N Gold, Cardinal Gardens, Century and La Sorbonne are some of the many apartment options for those who want to live a little farther from campus. Some apartments require meal plans, so check with each residential college to confirm. For the apartments closer to campus, a partial meal plan might be convenient.

Annenberg House offers limited space for students in the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, as well as their roommates. Cardinal `N Gold has a sustainable living special interest community, and encourages composting, recycling and using eco-friendly appliances. Cardinal Gardens is located on McClintock Avenue, right across from the Village and close to the West Residential College facilities. The central courtyard includes barbecue grills, a fireplace and a basketball half-court. A recreational room in the CSC lobby is perfect for late-night pool games.

Century Apartments is another good option for workout junkies. Just across Jefferson Boulevard, it is close to the Lyon Center and USC Village Fitness Center. It is also home to the gender-inclusive Rainbow Floor for LGBTQ and ally students. Also off Jefferson is La Sorbonne, a small, quiet apartment complex with full kitchens, studio apartments and newly remodeled bathrooms.