Tuesday, December 6, 2011

We Appreciate Our Residents!

Thanks to everyone who helped to make our Tenant Appreciation Day such a success!  It was so rewarding to be able to give all the Trojan Buildings' Residents a free lunch during such a stressful week-- Exam Week!

All of us on the Management Team really enjoyed getting to visit with all the Students.  The weather in Los Angeles yesterday was gorgeous; It was sunny and just cool enough.  Many of the Residents sat on the lawn in front of Trojan Terraza and ate their lunch like they were at a picnic.  And, of course, In-N-Out Burgers are always delicious. . .

Good luck on your exams, Trojans!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Eating Healthy on a Student Budget (excerpts)

Although the legendary ‘Freshman 15’ has recently been declared a myth by an Ohio State study, many college students still struggle with how to eat both healthy and on a limited budget.  For students balancing classes, work, internships and extracurricular activities, daily eating habits often fall to fast food and pre-packaged entrees.

Robyn Kievit, a nurse practitioner and dietician at Emerson College and member of the American College Health Association, helps students manage their eating every day and is familiar with the issue of eating healthy for less.  Her advice for busy students is to plan meals and snacks around classes and to bring non-perishable foods along during the day if they are unable to go back to their apartment or dorm between classes.  “One method may work one day with a hectic work and class schedule while another will work for a different day or weekend day,” Kievit said. “In general, I recommend students try to eat something every three to four hours as that is when our bodies generally become hungry after eating mindfully the last time. Eating regularly keeps us from overeating and undereating.”

Asha Kennedy, a 19-year-old dietetics major at Florida State University, believes that an important rule of eating healthy on a limited budget is planning meals in advance.  “Making a schedule, even if tentative, for the week will give you an idea of how much time you will need to dedicate to your meals as well as to plan out when and between which classes to prep for your meals,” Kennedy said. “Potluck dinners are a favorite among my friends and I. Someone makes the pasta, someone makes the meat, another person makes the vegetables and someone is in charge of dessert. Or even having one roommate cook one night, and you cook another night are simple ways to ensure having a meal on busy days.”

Kievit suggested these students stock their kitchen with items that will help them create basic meals, such as:
• Salad spinner 
• Aluminum vegetable steamer
• Medium size saucepan/pot
• Wooden spoon
• Medium serrated knife
• Medium cutting knife
• Cutting board
• Spatula
• Water container with filters

When buying groceries, Kievit said students should make a list and a budget ahead of time, and stick to it.  The list should include foods that are multipurpose (especially if they have limited shelf life) such as vegetables that can be used on sandwiches and also in entrees. Buying plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables is also important to keeping a balanced diet. Although non-vegetarians and vegans tend to get enough protein, meats such as chicken are practical for healthy cooking because they can be used in a variety of ways.  It’s important to look at the nutrition content and stay away from foods high in saturated and trans fats.

Purchasing store brand items and taking advantage of sales and coupons can also save money, as well as shopping at discount grocers and green markets.  Pre-packaged foods are a quick, seemingly inexpensive and often tasty option, but even those that claim to be healthy can be packed with hidden sodium. Kievit offered the following tips when it comes to pre-packaged meals:
• Keep calories down to 500 in total
• Keep fat grams to zero of saturated or trans fats.
• Keep sodium down to 300-600 mg per serving in frozen or pre-packaged foods.
• In general, choosing foods with the least amounts of ingredients is best and most pre-packaged foods have a longer list of ingredients.

Eating healthy on a budget may seem like a challenge, but by following these simple rules, Keivet estimated that college students can keep their weekly grocery budget down to about $20-$50.  To learn more about healthy eating, students can visit their school’s student health centers and ask for advice specific to their school and the food shopping options around it.

By Julie DeVito
November 11, 2011

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Free Art!

We know the perfect way to unwind after a day of USC lectures.  Lose yourself in some amazing art!

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art has amazing permanent collections that are FREE on the 2nd Tuesday of every month and every day after 5pm.  (PS.  The museum is closed on Wednesdays.)  They have a wide array of art to choose from. You can view the traditional art of many world cultures or photography, to some very modern sculptural art installations.  Something for every taste.


Monday, August 22, 2011

Free Concerts at the Hollywood Bowl

Some weekday mornings in the summer, you can enjoy the rehearsals of the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl. It's free to listen, free to park, and you can explore the grounds and visit the free Hollywood Bowl Museum. Call (323) 850-2000 to see when rehearsals are scheduled.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Crime Prevention Tips from the USC Dept. of Public Safety

The Department of Public Safety at USC is a terrific resource for the university's students and staff.  We are thankful that we at Trojan Buildings are on the DPS Patrol Perimeter. 

We have the highest respect for all the officers.  Los Angeles is a big and sometimes dangerous city.  The DPS officers have some very useful crime prevention tips for students.  We have reprinted some of them here for you:  
What is Suspicious?
·   A person going door-to-door
·   Anyone forcibly entering a locked vehicle
·   Anyone being forced into a vehicle
Confronting Danger
·   Trust your instincts
·   Know yourself
·   Show your anger, not your fear
Getting around USC safely / Jogging safety
·   Stay alert to your surroundings
·   Know the locations of the Emergency Phones
·   Try to vary your route
·   Jog with a known companion
·   Jog in a familiar area
·   Do not jog after dark
Auto Crimes
·   Be selective in where you park your car
·   Always lock your car
·   Don't leave valuables visible inside
·   Keep doors locked and windows up
·   Keep your valuables out of view
·   Travel on main road
Bicycle Safety
·   Register your bicycle
·   Working brakes
·   Bike lights for night riding
·   Register your bicycle
·   Lock your bike to a stationary post or rack
·   Thieves look for easy opportunities

ATM Safety / Identity Theft
·   Be alert
·   Do NOT write your code on your ATM card
·   Stand directly in front of the ATM
·   Pay attention to your billing cycles
·   Minimize the identification information
·   Keep personal information in a safe place
Acquaintance Rape / Ruffies and GHB -"Rape Drugs"
·   Listen carefully
·   Be aware
·   Remember that date rape is a crime
·   Don't share drinks
·   Don't leave your drink unattended
·   Call 9-1-1 if someone passes out
Apartment and Residential Security
·   Unpack as soon as possible
·   Always lock your door
·   Recognize strangers
Fire Safety
·   Alert the occupants and evacuate the building
·   Be prepared
·   Beware of False alarms

For the complete list of crime prevention tips, visit:

Monday, August 1, 2011

Welcome back, Trojans!

Here you come!

Students are starting to return for another year's education at USC.  To all of you coming back for another year and all of you coming to Los Angeles for the first time-- WELCOME!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Get Help Furnishing Your Apartment

We have just come across a service that may be very useful to our Trojan Buildings' residents.  Need to get some furnishings, say from IKEA, but don't have a way to get there all the way across Los Angeles or to bring them back here to Trojan Buildings?  Contact Chris, the Trojan Spaces manager, and he will get you in touch with Full Service Furnishing.

For a small fee, plus the cost of the furniture you choose, they will do the shopping, delivery, and assembly of the furniture you need.  All furniture is new.  There are two deliveries scheduled for USC students.  You must place your order by either August 10th or 20th.  Call Chris at (323) 428-1687 for more information.

Another great way to get the things you need is to take a Zipcar.  There are 3 parked in front of Trojan Terraza and USC students get discounted membership!  And did we mention that they pay for insurance and gas?  It's a terrific value.  We placed a link on our Facebook page:  http://www.facebook.com/pages/Trojan-Buildings/180666225287777 Go check it out!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Summer "To Do" List

Got any time to spare in Los Angeles this summer?  We found a list of 20 fun-filled activities (not on USC campus!) for you to try.  Between art museums, Disneyland, and Hollywood legends, something is sure to be the perfect way for you to spend a day.

Go to the Trojan Buildings Facebook page to see the whole list!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Easier Ways to Find a Favorite Food Truck?

Here's two new ways that we like:

This one has a map of the city that shows you where they are open or where they will be parking.  You can filter it by zip code, etc also.

Don't want your entire Twitter account full of food truck news?  This site lets you browse them all in one place.  Yay!  Much easier......  

Monday, April 4, 2011

Things You Should Know About Renter's Insurance: An article printed in the Daily Trojan

What exactly is renter’s insurance and why should you consider it?  While apartment buildings are insured against certain catastrophes, this coverage does not usually extend to personal property. Property crimes are common in the USC area, and renter’s insurance can help to mitigate your losses should you be the victim of theft or property damage. These are some common misunderstandings about renter’s insurance:

"I’m covered because my landlord has insurance."
Usually a landlord’s insurance covers only structural damage to the building itself—and a lot of policies don’t even go that far if the damage is caused by a tenant. For example, if you leave the tub running and it drips downstairs, damaging your neighbor’s couch, you may be liable for the whole mess. If your building caught fire, your landlord’s coverage would include repairs, but only to the building.  It’s too expensive.

Renter’s insurance can be as little as $10 to $20 per month. It depends on factors such as the type of personal property you’re covering, the size of the dwelling, the location and the deductible you want. Lower prices are offered for apartments that contain smoke alarms and fire extinguishers. For lower rates, you can raise the deductible; for more protection, you can pay more for replacement cost coverage.

"My neighborhood is safe."
Renter’s insurance usually extends beyond on-premise theft and hazards. If your luggage is stolen while you’re on vacation, you’ll often be covered. The same may be true with property stolen from your car. You’ll also likely be protected if someone slips and sprains their ankle at events you hold; you may even receive compensation for legal defense costs in the case of a lawsuit.

"I don’t own valuable things."
You might be surprised at how quickly all your books, CDs, and kitchen appliances add up. Even students can easily own thousands of dollars worth of belongings. Following is a list of common household items.  List each item along with its year of purchase and what you think it would cost to replace it today.  Types of  coverage offered personal property coverage:

Coverage varies by state, company, and type, but here are some basic examples of personal property to include in your inventory. Items not listed here may still be insurable; ask agents about customizing your policy with more options.
Property typically covered:
• Stereo systems, VCRs, and television sets
• CDs, DVDs, videos, and tapes
• Photography equipment
• Movable appliances, including microwaves
• Furniture
• Sports equipment
• China and glassware
• Clothing and books
Property covered with limitations:
• Home computers
• Cash, including coin collections
• Checks and traveler’s checks,
• Jewelry and watches
• Precious and semi-precious stones
• Comic books, trading cards, stamps
• Antiques and fine art
• Goldware and silverware (theft)
• Rugs, wall hangings, and tapestries
• Firearms (theft)
• Furs or clothing trimmed in fur
Natural hazard coverage:
Natural-hazard coverage varies by state and company, but most policies protect your property against losses created by the following:
 • Vandalism
• Water damage from failure of plumbing or appliances
• Frozen water pipes
• Hail
• Windstorm
• Smoke
• Explosion
• Vehicles or aircraft
For a higher premium, most insurance carriers offer options to add coverage for hazards not included in a standard renter’s policy:
• Earthquake, landslide, or other movement damage
• Water damage cause by an underground source or flooding
• Nuclear-hazard damages

Insurance is about your protection against unforeseeable circumstances. Even if you think it can’t happen, paying the price of one music CD a month might make the difference between an empty house and a replacement shopping spree.  A few pennies invested each day in renter’s insurance can pay for itself if your expensive belongings are lost or stolen.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Vote for your Trojan Terraza Idea

The “backyard” of Trojan Terraza needs a makeover!  What would you, our TT Residents, like to have at your USC apartment?


Some ideas we have heard include-
1.  A volleyball court
2.  A meditation garden
3.  Circuit-training equipment
4.  Vegetable garden plots
5.  A basketball hoop
6.  More patio seating

But wait, there’s more! 

If you come up with a genius idea that we love, you can win a $50 gift certificate to Domino’s Pizza.  

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Spring Break Special- For Trojan Buildings Residents ONLY!

We know that not all of you are going to go home for Spring Break and, like me, you can't afford to fly to Mexico to join other college students.  So, we asked around and arranged a discount at an award-winning hotel just two blocks from the beach here in Los Angeles!

The Inn at Playa del Rey has been featured in the LA Times, Sunset Magazine, and won a Gold Medal from Conde Nast Traveler- just to name a few.  They have amazing views of the Ballona Wetlands Nature Preserve and Marina del Rey.  With your stay you get free parking, a home-baked breakfast, afternoon cheese and fruit, and you can borrow their bicycles and cruise up and down along the beach, up to Venice or down to Manhattan Beach.  www.innatplayadelrey.com

Call the Inn at 310-574-1920 and tell them which of the Trojan Buildings you live in.  They'll give you $25 off each night for up to 2 nights.  Kick back and relax!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Elementary, my dear Watson

It seems that our colleagues at Viterbi gave a helping hand to IBM in the creation of their history-making computer, Watson.  Watson recently outgunned some of the past champions on the show Jeopardy!  "His" grasp of language is really phenomenal (and just a bit scary...).

Here's a recent Daily Trojan article: http://dailytrojan.com/2011/02/15/viterbi-helps-ibm-create-a-new-computing-robot/

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Women of Troy Beat Up the Golden Bears

This past weekend the USC Women's Basketball team won 80-67 against Cal.  Nice work, Ladies!   Keep those victories coming. . . .

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Year of the Rabbit hops in next Thursday!

Chinese New Year is next week on February 3rd!  This year, we will be welcoming in the Year of the Rabbit.  And in honor of the New Year, we at Trojan Buildings are starting a new endeavor.  Welcome to our blog!

Gung Hei Fat Choi! May you become prosperous!

With less than a week to go, the time has also come to prepare the way for the good luck that the new year will bring.  By conducting a special cleaning of all of our homes, we sweep away the bad luck of the preceding year and make our homes ready for good luck.  We can always use more good luck, right?

If you’d prefer to just have the fun, try the famous Los Angeles Chinese New Year Festival in Chinatown, February 5th-6th.  It is full of music, fun, and dancing and begins with the wonderful Golden Dragon Parade.  I’ll be posting more about the festival on the Trojan Buildings’ Facebook page, if you want more information.