Take the Next Steps: Fall Opportunities for Spring Admits

You’ve been admitted to spring, but what will you do in the fall? It’s up to you! Your admission to USC is secure for the spring term, so your choices are as broad as your imagination. Read below to discover them. 


Most spring admits will graduate with their peers who started in fall. One way you can ensure on-time graduation* is to take courses in the fall that will count toward USC degree requirements. We can help you select courses to make sure you stay on track. Choose a community college, or enroll as a non-degree-seeking student at a local university (look for visitor status, continuing education, or extension/professional studies programs). You might even explore study abroad opportunities such as those listed below.

*Please note that some majors require a certain number of semesters to be spent at USC, and therefore spring admits in those majors will graduate later than their fall-admitted classmates, regardless of coursework taken in the fall.

Before you enroll:
Familiarize yourself with USC’s General Education Program, found in the Spring Admit Course Planning Worksheet. This worksheet will also help you determine how you may complete some of these requirements before enrolling at USC.

Also be sure to review the requirements for your intended USC degree. Pay close attention to lower-division courses you can complete during fall. Check with the admission offices in the Dornsife College (science majors, take note) or Viterbi School of Engineering if you intend to pursue a course of study in these schools. Some schools, including study abroad agreement schools, may not be a good fit for majors with lower-division science requirements.

Next, refer to the Student Development Programs page for spring admits. You can see if your courses have already been evaluated for transfer credit, request pre-approval for any courses we have not previously reviewed, or find out which standardized exams fulfill GE Core Literacies or major-related requirements.

Consider these enrollment options:

Community College
Most first-year spring admits choose to enroll in community college during the fall, close to their home. Community colleges encourage you to apply right away to allow ample time for placement testing and academic advisement. USC does not prefer one college over another, so choose a school that is convenient for you.

Study Abroad
USC has established agreements with these five American institutions in Europe. Each is U.S. accredited, and instruction is in English. Space may be limited, so apply soon. Each school has their own brief, fast-tracked application in the links provided below. Students will stay connected as a USC-bound cohort, so you will have an instant network of fellow Trojans upon returning to the U.S.

American University of Paris
Franklin University Switzerland
Richmond, The American International University in London
John Cabot University, Rome
Anglo-American University, Prague

Please do not hesitate to contact Student Development Programs at sdpesd@usc.edu if you have any questions about one of our agreement institutions.

Four-Year Options
Do not enroll in a four-year college under the false pretense of finishing your degree there. Doing so may take up a valuable space for someone else. Enroll in a non-degree or continuing education program.

“I studied abroad at the American University of Paris, where I traveled to seven different countries that I had never been to before, and it ended up being the best experience of my entire life. Looking back, I wouldn't trade those four months for anything else.”

—Moera Ainai. Fall Semester at Richmond, the American International University in London

Gap Semester

Taking a break between high school and college is a common choice around the world, and it is becoming increasingly popular in the U.S. Although USC does not maintain formal partnerships with these programs, here is a sampling of some opportunities for travel, volunteering or exploring in the U.S. and abroad.


Please note: USC does not award college credit for gap programs. Any college credit offered by these programs cannot be applied to your USC degree requirements. Students should consider these options for cultural exploration and volunteer opportunities only.

Adventures Cross-Country
Make friends, develop leadership skills and spend a gap semester in Asia, Africa or Latin America.

World Endeavors
Choose from international internship, volunteer or study abroad programs around the world.

EF Gap Year
Prepare to thrive in an ever-changing world on an EF Gap program where you will have experiences such as service learning, language study, internships and leadership workshops in up to six countries per semester.

Pacific Discovery
Offered throughout Asia and Southeast Asia, Australia and New Zealand, and Central and South America, these programs emphasize leadership development, outdoor and wilderness education, volunteer and service learning opportunities, and sustainability.

Art History Abroad
Explore the connections between art, music, literature, history and philosophy while traveling throughout Italy.

Carpe Diem Education
Carpe Diem provides three-month and yearlong gap programs focused on community, cultural immersion, service learning and adventure.

National Outdoor Leadership School
A leader in outdoor education, NOLS leads students on wilderness expeditions to teach them technical outdoor skills, leadership and environmental ethics.

Work and Internships

Many students also choose to gain valuable hands-on experience and professional skills through internships and paid work. Community colleges may allow you to complete an internship for academic credit. Check with their advising or career office for more information. You may also check with local employers for job opportunities.

“My admission counselor helped me identify classes at Santa Ana College, where I got 12 units and a great start on my college GPA. I also had time to volunteer at a nonprofit that helps unemployed women become job-ready. I got valuable business experience working in their store, and learned to use some new technology that has added to my technical skills.”

—Jennifer Leal. Santa Ana, CA. Fall Semester at Santa Ana College

Stay Connected

ZeeMee Group for Spring Admits
Visit your applicant portal for a link to the private group especially for spring admits. It’s a great way to “meet” other students before you even begin classes!