USC Price School of Public Policy

Undergraduate Capstone Experience

Undergraduate Capstone Experience

Bring your studies together.
Make a real difference.

Imagine walking into a job interview holding your senior thesis or UPPD Lab Report. The capstone experience allows students to apply their track skills and knowledge to complete an analysis of a specific real-world project. Building from the blueprints of our graduate planning studios, practicums, and overseas laboratories, students in the UPPD Laboratories work with organizations and agencies on planning, policy, health, and development projects.

A group of students might consider, for example, how to diminish health disparities and increase quality of life in South Los Angeles — a site of economic disinvestment and poor food resources — by bringing a new grocery store to an underserved area.

  • Public policy students could analyze existing legislative barriers and opportunities
  • Planning students could outline the necessary permits and land assemblage issues
  • Health students could assess the health outcome impacts
  • Real estate developers could calculate the financial barriers and identify building sites
  • Nonprofit management students could collaborate with an organization to advocate for the new store’s financial subsidies


UPPD laboratories projects can be completed anywhere in Los Angeles and Southern California.  We send undergraduates to cities outside the region to look at similarprojects and issues. USC and the Price School have a long tradition of work in Sacramento, Washington, D.C., and around the world. Using existing relations we are seeing students analyze projects in places such as China, Europe, and South America!