Elise Haukenes

Major: Violin Performance

Minor: Dance

Graduation year: 2022

Hometown: Falls Church, VA

USC Organizations: USC Club Gymnastics, USC Chamber Ballet Company, Student Symphony Orchestra of USC, Christian Challenge

Hashtag to describe yourself: #gogirl

Favorite place on campus: I would have to say the couches and tables in USC Village are a really nice place to study, relax, or hang with friends in between or after classes! 

Describe your favorite USC Thornton experience so far.

One of my favorite USC Thornton experiences is the Choreographers and Composers Showcase, a collaboration between Thornton School of Music and Kaufman School of Dance. As a violinist and dancer, it is such a joy to participate in this interdisciplinary project every year. I love the process leading up to this performance as it consists of working side by side with the composer, learning a brand-new piece of music and figuring out the quartet’s unique relationship to the dancers.

What was your favorite USC GE class?

The Biology of Food was a fun GE to take! We learned about the science behind foods we eat every day and how they impact our bodies and even took a mini field trip across the street to the USC Hotel to see their hydroponic gardens.

What is your favorite thing about being in Los Angeles?

The thriving arts community, sunshine, beaches, and food!

What is something you wish you knew when you were applying to college?

That it is 100% okay to not know exactly what you want to do in the future, but to trust your instincts and enjoy the journey.

What is your favorite thing about being a student at the Thornton School?

I really appreciate the supportive environment within Thornton and that we have classical, jazz, and pop programs!

Why did you choose the Thornton School? 

One of the main reasons I chose Thornton was because of my violin professor. She is such an incredible teacher, and I am so blessed to be able to study with her for all four years of college. I also love that USC is located in LA and that Thornton is a music school within a university. This gives me the opportunity to continue my dance education by minoring in dance and allows me to take classes outside of my major!