University of Southern California Reviews

Updated June 19, 2015
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University of Southern California President C. L. Max Nikias
C. L. Max Nikias
8 Ratings

Pros
  • An effort is made by the administration to foster a real work-life balance (in 18 reviews)

  • Great benefits, work on a college campus is awesome (in 36 reviews)

Cons
  • There is cumbersome bureaucracy and red tape that you would not expect at a private institution (in 7 reviews)

  • Reviews on this site from mostly student workers that are happy to have any job (in 7 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

19 Employee Reviews

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  1. Care Coordinator

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at University of Southern California (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    The doctors are amazing and really care about the patients.

    Cons

    Administration has no idea what goes on at the front lines and do not directly supervise research staff, however, they are the only ones that can write your review.

    Advice to Management

    Make an effort to understand the difficulties faced by your staff and offer support.


  2. Helpful (2)

    A brutal, unhappy place

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Humanites Person
    Current Employee - Humanites Person
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at University of Southern California full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    USC is strong in the sciences and engineering.

    Cons

    The Humanities are not valued at USC.

    Advice to Management

    Stop gutting the Humanities.


  3. Helpful (2)

    Mediocre environment.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Assistant Professor in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Assistant Professor in Los Angeles, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at University of Southern California full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Overall it is basically a standard run of the mill University environment. Nothing special.

    Cons

    There is a long list that could go there. Overall there is this nasty and toxic culture. A lot of dead wood extracting rents at the expense of the juniors

    Advice to Management

    Gut the whole place and get rid of all this entrenched dead wood. We are past advice, need a reset!


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  5. Academic courses/ Instructor

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Smart Instructors, Expert in their field

    Cons

    They dont care about course, They just care about their reserach


  6. Helpful (3)

    Low Wages, good benefits, At-Will employment means you can be let go anytime

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Staff Member in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Staff Member in Los Angeles, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at University of Southern California full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    College environment, fun smart students. Interesting events if you want to stay after work. Football team, the usc brand gives legitimacy to you.

    Cons

    Low, low wages for most employees. Parking is expensive. Neighborhood is very sketchy. Little room for personal growth. Run like a corporation. Leadership more interested in raising money and building facilities than serving students and appreciating staff. Politics are extreme. More so than any of the 4 corporations I have worked for. Reviews on this site from mostly student workers that are happy to have any job. Take with a grain of salt. I have worked at usc for ten years and desperately want out.

    Advice to Management

    Treat Staff as if they were important to you and as an extended member of the family.


  7. Helpful (2)

    Poor handling of lower employees and techs,work overload,USC is more worried about lawsuits than being professional

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Lab Technician in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Lab Technician in Los Angeles, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at University of Southern California full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    free food, no matter which department.

    Cons

    lots of labor work, unregulated work environment, the policy is there is no policy (unless your boss creates one that is subjective)..one dept has time sheets , one is let loose, too much trojan fight on nonsense. No safety especially not with computers..flimsy software.i foresee a possible hacking breach happening and everyone will be unsurprisingly blindsided.

    Advice to Management

    REGULATE some laws that everyone can follow and STICK TO IT.


  8. Helpful (3)

    Horrible, Horrible Experience...Stay Away from USC Keck School of Medicine

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Project Specialist in Los Angeles, CA
    Former Employee - Project Specialist in Los Angeles, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at University of Southern California full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    I hear the UPC or main campus is much better, try that campus and stay away from HSC/Keck School of Medicine at all cost.

    Cons

    I was lied to about my salary, job duties, and everything possibly imaginable about my job. The last several years was a nightmare, as whole departments were leaving and people are either quitting, leaving or getting laid off. I was laid off of my job and told that I would be able to recover the loss of salary with another position. That never happened. I provided my boss with excellent service & loyalty and never once got any type of raise or any type of support when I was laid off. On top of that, I was grossly underpaid for my level of education, barely able to make it off of my salary, then laid off with nothing and no support. Beware of grant funded positions because there is no severance package when you're laid off. They just tell you within 30 days you have to leave. Working at USC has been the worse career mistake I ever made. I wished everyday I was there that I never took that job. I was recruited for my job and filled with nothing but false truths by boss, and I'm sorry I didn't do the proper employer/organization research prior to taking that job. I was stuck working in a capacity that I was never trained for and doing work that wasn't remotely close to my educational background. It was insulting and I had to endure it for years. Departments are fragmented and disjointed, so its impossible to get assistance with anything or find resources and people to help you do your job. I worked in academia for years at public schools and I never knew how good I had it there. USC operates dysfunctionally and I'm really surprised the institution has not been shut down.

    Advice to Management

    Do away with the grant funded positions, pay your employees out of stable funds, and have better safeguards for your employees. Its a huge problem retaining good people at USC HSC, so who's really the problem? Management. There are no unions to protect the employees and there are absolutely no policies in place for employee/employer protection. This is real problem. The HR dept. for Keck School of Medicine are no help and abusive to employees trying to get assistance. HSC you need to find out why the UPC side of USC operates more efficiently and why employees are happier and have longevity with their careers. Also, increase the wages to make it livable for employees. Advertising a Project Manager position for $15/hr with no severance package, expensive benefits and no promise of job security for someone with a Masters in Science degree is insulting. Also, the professional development is non-existent and if you are going to pay low wages along with no severance package, then provide some worthwhile professional development and training, so when you do lay off people, they have the skills and knowledge to quickly get a new position in this difficult job market.


  9. Helpful (2)

    Worst job Ever

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at University of Southern California as a contractor

    Pros

    There is nothing great about working here.

    Cons

    You are not paid for the type of education or experience that you bring to your job. The current employees think they know everything, but really have no idea what is happening or how to teach. If you continue to work there, it is because of the USC name. Management is paid much more than non-management.


  10. Shitheap

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Research Associate in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Research Associate in Los Angeles, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at University of Southern California full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Sunshine is all year round, which is really nice. Otherwise it's got lots of nice fountains. The university prefers to invest in fountains and 'restaurants' for the students than their people.

    Cons

    Everything else about the university is unadulterated crap. The faculty are largely irrelevant in the research community, or were briefly associated with decent professors and rode on their coat-tails. The students are walking zombie-morons with little to zero initiative and learning ability. TERRIBLE!

    Advice to Management

    Hire some intelligent faculty and postdocs. Ditch the rich kids and get in smart ones instead. Quit spending money improving the campus and pay your staff more money and give them decent holiday amounts. 3 full weeks whenever per full-time staff member paid isn't asking for much.


  11. Helpful (2)

    Great school but doesn't pay well.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Student Services Advisor (Financial Aid/Admission) in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Student Services Advisor (Financial Aid/Admission) in Los Angeles, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at University of Southern California full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Pretty campus. Great staff. Room for growth. Pays for your education.

    Cons

    The new director of financial aid sexually harasses people and is extremely arrogant, condescending, sarcastic and ill advised micromanaging maniac. Extremely high turn over. Low morale. Management does not place any value on talent retention. The micromanaging drives great talented and educated people away. New hires catch wind of it quickly and immediately start looking for new jobs.

    Advice to Management

    Learn the job before you ride someone's back for doing theirs way better than you ever will.



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