Can't speak for what current students do. But for a flavor of every day stuff, you can check out the eateries and other establishments on Figueroa from just slightly south of Exposition (at the Tuscany apartments) and north to Five Guys Burgers (just south of Adams).
For a little more culture, Expo Park immediately south of campus has the Rose Garden and several museums. The Natural History Museum is still under renovation, but many areas are complete, including the new entrance on Exposition and the dinosaur exhibit. You're about a year too early to see space shuttle Endeavor, which will make its permanent home at the California Science Center.
In terms of a little further away from campus, you can check out the LA Live complex, home of the Staples Center where the Lakers play. I'm pretty sure a Dash bus can take you there. Not sure if USC still runs its own tram b/w campus and LA Live. You're a couple weeks too early to take a train from USC directly to downtown.
If you've got wheels, you should check out Little Tokyo and the Historic Core downtown. Grab an exotic hot doc at Wurstkuche (founded by a Trojan) in the Arts District.
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When we were there last April we sat in open courtyard outside of the building where admissions is housed and my son spoke with students. Then he went with them to a class and got a tour of some of the buildings from them. He really learned a lot that day, and all from people he had just met. (If you do the class thing, be sure he goes up to the professor prior to the start of the class and asks permission to sit in).
There's not much to do around the USC campus per se. I mean, within a few blocks, there's the California Science Center, and LA Live (which btw, is utterly boring during the day). LA Live is just restaurants and bars and nothing happens there until night or unless the Lakers are playing.
If you have a car, I suggest you drive to Santa Monica and check out 3rd Street Promenade or go down to Hollywood and walk around. LA has a lot of things to do, they're just not necessarily within walking vicinity of USC's campus.
If interested, you can make an appt with someone in your son's department. Faculty are happy to meet with incoming students and may provide interesting insights. The USC bookstore is fun to visit and you can buy some spirit wear to start developing that Trojan pride!
I second walking just off campus south toward the LA Coliseum (where all the home football games are held) and looking at the Rose Garden and The Natural History Museum. It's a lovely area. This entire area takes on a lively, fun pregame party atmosphere on football days.
it's also fun to poke around the USC book store
You might want to check the USC Theater Event Calendar. They have shows on weeknights - if you are staying right near campus, this would be easy.
If you have a car and want to drive a bit, head west on the 10 fwy to the beach,you could drive along the beach and perhaps see the Getty Villa (Goodle it) north to Beverly Hills/Hollywood. Union Station/Olvera Street is fun too.
I'm going to be down there this weekend, however unfortunately I can't make it to any of the scheduled tours (USC should do weekend tours!) would anyone have any recommendations for me, I'm going in as Electrical Engineering major
I think they have self guided tours you can do. Google for usc self guided tour for the map. This weekend is a bit crazy for tours though since the LA festival of books is happening on campus which means thousands of people will be roaming around. There are currently white event tents setup all over campus for all the various vendors.
eugesd, if you're up for the Festival of Books and enjoy live music, try to catch a few of the bands performing there that are comprised of current and former students. PM me if you want specific names so you'll know who not to miss. Also, some other amazing authors and performers are going to be there, so check out the list on the LA Times site to see if you recognize any of them (and you probably will).