"The School of Cinematic Arts has a broad set of goals and missions when it comes to student services, but the most important part of what we do is simple: we pay attention to students. Everything we do is focused on providing each and every student with the tools they will need to get the best, most complete education possible. Their time here will be over quicker than you know it, but with the help of our various student focused offices and resources, they'll maximize their experience and appreciate every day at SCA. We'll be here to help celebrate their successes, and we'll be here to help them solve their problems. The path they find throughout their experience here will be their own, but I, and my entire staff, will be behind them, supporting them every step of the way."
-Dr. Brian Harke, Dean of Students
The Office of Student Services has begun an initiative to help students build a strong sense of community within the School, and Dean Elizabeth Daley and I agree that parents and families are an important element in this community-building process. With this in mind, we hope that our students and their families will take advantage of the resources provided by the USC School of Cinematic Arts.
SCA Student and Parent Resources
Our Admission team provides applicants with information concerning all of the School's divisions and programs, addresses questions and concerns pertaining to applications and admission, provides tours and one-on-one counseling and organizes outreach events for prospective students both on and off campus. The resources provided by the team are also excellent tools for prospective students' relatives and friends who wish to learn more about SCA.
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Our Student Affairs team aids current students by providing a variety of services including:
- Organizing annual orientation sessions
- Addressing registration issues - including D-clearance processing
- Coordinating academic petitions and leaves of absence
- Providing graduation counseling
- Advising undergraduate production, Cinema & Media Studies and cinematic arts minor students
In addition, the unit coordinates with the School's Office of Industry Relations and the Director of Alumni Relations to organize events and resources that will help students plan for and make the transition from their academic pursuits to their professional paths. Student Affairs also assists the University and SCA's academic divisions with outreach to at-risk students.
The Manager of Student Services coordinates the scholarships offered by SCA, which include general scholarships open to all students, scholarships limited to specific student populations, and merit scholarships awarded for writing, cinematography, directing, editing, interactive media, Cinema & Media Studies and other categories. To assist students as they prepare to apply for scholarships, the Manager of Student Services holds a scholarship orientation and meets with students both one-on-one and in groups. Additionally, the Manager holds webinars for graduate students with the purpose of educating them on how they will fund their educations.
While the Manager may be able to advise students on financial aid matters, the Manager works independently of that University office and will therefore direct students to that resource as appropriate. For more information on the Office of Financial Aid, visit their site: www.usc.edu/admission/fa.
The School of Cinematic Arts offers a student-to-student mentoring program which helps new and returning students transition into the college setting and allows them to begin networking with more experienced students.
We also offer a professional mentor program, which is designed to help our students strengthen their industry contacts by pairing them with working professionals, many of whom are SCA alumni. In addition, both undergraduate and graduate students receive mentoring from faculty and industry professionals through their individual programs.
Student Involvement/Student Groups
Building from a foundation of community, the Office of Student Services works with SCA's 14 student clubs and organizations in order to help them promote themselves, hold events and forge lifelong friendships. SCA believes learning is not exclusive to the classroom. Clubs and organizations provide students with a complete learning experience, which can help them achieve their academic and professional goals.
SCA Family Program
In support of the University of Southern California's Parents Program, SCA's Family Program provides a variety of services and events to ensure that parents and families are engaged and involved within the SCA community. For those parents and families who choose to sign up, a monthly E-newsletter Communiqué is sent at the beginning of each month. The program also oversees an SCA parents Facebook group. The group allows SCA parents to communicate with each other and serves as an additional venue through which they may receive SCA news.
One of the first things students hear during Orientation is the importance of building a network. Success, in this profession, is a balance between what you know, who you know, and knowing how to keep in contact with your network. The School of Cinematic Arts (SCA) Office of Industry Relations (IR) is here to help you with this process. Staffed by industry professionals, IR provides a broad range of professional development services as well as in-depth information about career growth, film festivals and distribution for your short films.