FreshFest FAQs

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What’s the point of the retreat?

FreshFest is a way to get to know other students before school even starts, in a relaxing off-campus environment! FreshFest is mainly a social program to introduce you to your peers, with the opportunity to learn about ways to get involved on campus, and learn about Hillel and Jewish life on campus too.

Who’s going on the retreat?

FreshFest is for all first year students – fall and spring freshmen admits, and transfers too! You’ll also meet upperclassmen Freshman Engagement Fellows (FEFs) who will run your activities in small groups, and serve as yearlong mentors to help you transition into college life.

What kinds of activities will we be doing?

FreshFest begins on campus with a welcome reception for students and parents! In the early afternoon, we’ll go up to a local camp and do a variety of icebreakers, games, and fun activities such as night hikes, campfires, and free time by the pool to help you meet other Trojans!

What will I need to pack?

Casual and comfortable clothing for an overnight program and any toiletries you need overnight. If you’re interested in using the pool or any athletic facilities at camp make sure to bring a swimsuit or athletic clothing!

Where will we sleep?

We’ll be sleeping in cabins at a local summer camp! You’ll want to bring some basic bedding (sleeping bag, pillow, etc) as the camp does not provide that.

Do I need to be involved Jewishly before college to come on FreshFest?

Definitely not! Hillel is a pluralistic environment, and our staff and students all come from a wide variety of Jewish backgrounds. Our programming represents the variety of Jewish life at USC, and we look forward to welcoming you all to the USC community!