IYA Career Edge

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From day one of freshman year to graduation, Academy students can plan for a successful and dynamic career. The Academy’s rigorous curricular and co-curricular programs are uniquely designed to drive student outcomes by preparing our students to adapt quickly to rapidly changing work landscapes, think boldly as an individual while working effectively across multi-disciplinary teams, and take command of their future. 

Throughout their academic career, Academy students have access to tools and resources such as professional development workshops led by industry experts; intern, alumni, and founder panels; individualized career advising; and a powerful professional network of partners, recruiters, and employers.  

What’s more, our motto at USC is “once a Trojan, always a Trojan.” As a member of the Trojan Family, Academy students will leverage throughout their careers their strong and immediate connection to nearly half a million Trojan alumni across the world. 

90% of Academy graduates have jobs within 6 months of graduation.

Our commitment to supporting our students’ professional and career development is exemplified by the breadth and depth of programs and opportunities at the Academy, including: 

  • Individualized career advising 
  • Professional development workshops that focus on: CV, resume and cover letter design and content; interview skills; digital tools for self-marketing, including website design; portfolio review and critique; self assessment tools; and more 
  • Academy exclusive on-campus recruitment fairs with select industry partners 
  • Industry speaker series and networking events 
  • LA-based Career Treks as well as  
  • Domestic (U.S.) and International Study Tours 
  • Access to curated internship opportunities through IYA Industry Connect 
  • Free access to courses on LinkedIn Learning 
  • Additional resources available through the USC Career Center  

As innovators who are well prepared for an ever-changing global landscape, Academy students are capturing highly competitive internships, fellowships and full-time positions at a roster of companies that includes Google, Apple, Intel, adidas, Adobe, Facebook, Oculus, Spotify, IDEO, Dreamworks, Sony, Imagine Entertainment, Price Waterhouse Coopers, Ernst and Young, Hulu, NVIDIA, DEKA Research Labs, and Verizon.   

The Academy strongly encourages internships that allow students to apply their skills in high-test work environments and expand their professional networks. The wide-ranging, integrative nature of the Academy's curriculum, along with its focus on providing regular professionalizing experiences, prepares its students for internships and careers in a variety of industries and fields. Along with more traditional areas, Academy students are particularly competitive as applicants for the vast number of emerging ‘hybrid’ positions that both require special cross-disciplinary expertise and represent the jobs of tomorrow. 

Students can access professional leads through IYA Industry Connect, a comprehensive online database that connects Academy students with potential employers. IYA Industry Connect offers a platform where students can cultivate job leads, and get direct and exclusive access to opportunities specifically curated for Academy students. 

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A mentor giving a presentation

Each Academy degree culminates in a powerful capstone that offers students the ability to do a deep-dive on the development of innovative projects, leading to operational prototypes and viable enterprises, as well as proof of concept for advanced student research. Guided by expert faculty and field-specific mentors, capstone courses comprise invention, exploration, experimentation, and innovation as students work through project labs, workshops, demos, and formative and summative critiques. As a critical Education-Industry bridge for our students, Academy capstones have produced any number of successful, funded startups. Students engaging in research-based capstones have gone on to graduate work at leading academic institutions in the U.S. and abroad, including NYU and Oxford. 

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As of Fall 2020, Academy startups had garnered more than $120 million in development funding and acquisition payouts. A product designed and developed exclusively by Academy students, the Mira “Prism” Augmented Reality Headset, received the prestigious 2018 Red Dot Product Design Award and was recently selected to partner with Universal Creative on Super Nintendo World’s Super Mario Kart AR experience. Multiple Academy startups have been selected to take part in Y Combinator, named by Forbes as the leading accelerator in the world. One, Project Wren, was featured in TechCrunch, Fast Company and Forbes for its unique mission to offset individual carbon footprints. A second, Demeanor, Co., was acquired in 2019 by the digital experience platform NTWRK. 

Academy founders have regular, in-class and project-based access to faculty mentors, as well as the parade of industry visitors to classes and speaker series. Additionally, students have access to master Makers, Artists, Designers, Technologists, and Entrepreneurs through the Academy’s X-in-Residence Program. 

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