The CSI faculty are recognized leaders in the field of communications. Consider this short list of notable facts about the current CSI faculty:
As part of a great educational institution, development of our students is our foremost objective. At CSI, a student studying communications engineering has access to the largest array of course offerings in communications, coding, information theory, and networks availble in US academia. This curriculum provides students with in-depth knowledge of the basic tools used in research and design, not just a cursory overview of the latest trends. As a result, our Ph.D. students are well-prepared to absorb the latest advances in the field as well as contribute to these advancements.
This training with a focus on details creates a uniquely creative environment at CSI. As a student, you may find that your office-mate, who is working far afield, not only understands your research, but can critically discuss it with you. Similarly, it is not uncommon for a student to publish papers with multiple CSI faculty either via faculty collaboration or an interesting class project taken to the next level. As a student, if you get stuck on your research you can talk with any of the CSI faculty, and chances are, one of these professors will have a detailed working knowledge of the subject.
The results of this training are evident in the accomplishments of our alumni. CSI alumni have been faculty at such universities as UCLA, Stanford, USC, Purdue, The Ohio State University, The University of Arizona, University of Michigan, University of Toronto, Georgia Tech, and MIT. Many CSI Alumni have risen to the upper ranks of management at major corporations in the US and abroad. Others have started small companies, some of which have grown to Fortune 500 members.
If you use a device that communicates, it is almost certain that research at CSI played a significant role in how it was designed. Sometimes the transfer of CSI research into engineering practice is a long process. For example, CSI faculty conducted the basic research behind the signals that are used in the GPS system and CDMA cell-phones decades before these systems were conceived. Error correction codes that now protect every CD were viewed by many as a mathematical curiosity when originally developed by CSI faculty.
In other situations, CSI research results have been transferred to products more quickly. Research conducted at CSI in the late 1990s, already forms the basis of several advanced U.S. military modems. Similarly, signature sequences used for the "3G" cellular communication standards are precisely those developed at CSI just a few years before the standards committee convened.
There are numerous examples of such advances made by CSI people that have had a major impact in the way practical systems are designed. This is fostered through interaction with industry via the affiliates program, consulting activities, and the CSI alumni network. This mixture of tough basic research and long-term engineering relevance is central to the CSI research mission.
Why not have it all? USC is a university on the rise and provides the full experience of a world-class large university. This means that CSI students have an excellent array of course options in Computer Science, Mathematics, and Physics. In addition students can get the chance to interact with faculty, students, and researchers at closely related research institutes such as
Beyond USC, Caltech and UCLA are both approximately 10 miles from the main campus. In the greater Los Angeles area, there are numerous universities, including UC campuses at Irvine, Santa Barbara, and Riverside and Cal. State campuses at Los Angeles, Fullerton, Long Beach, Pomona, Northridge, and Dominguiz Hills. There are also a number of excellent, small private colleges in the area, such as the Claremont Colleges.
As for lifestyle, again, Los Angeles offers almost everything one would want. Some CSI people live in the mountains 15 miles North of USC, others at the beach, 20 miles to the south. Still others live in the more urban environs of West LA, Pasadena, mid-Wilshire, or adjacent to campus (each less 10 miles from campus). is definitely over-rated, except on those days when it snows (never!). Most of us are door-to-door in 30 minutes or less.
Entertainment options are nearly unlimited in Los Angeles. About 4 miles north of USC is downtown, where the major concert, theater, and sporting venues are located. For the more adventurous, there is the "Sunset Strip" in Hollywood and our own USC Trojan sporting events. Or, a quick trip to the Getty, local skiing, or Catalina island.