Finding My Place at UCLA

Hey there! I’m Conner, a sophomore at UCLA from Arcadia, CA (right by Pasadena, where the Rose Bowl is held and where Trader Joe’s was founded!). First, I want to say a huge CONGRATULATIONS on getting into UCLA! It’s really such an incredible accomplishment, so take a moment to be proud of yourself. You — you! — got into the #1 public university in the country — and the university with the #1 dining hall food. (Maybe the first one is a little more important.)

A little bit about me — I’m majoring in Statistics and minoring in Digital Humanities and Entrepreneurship. I’m interested in working in the technology industry, so I’ve tailored my academics to help me develop a broad skillset that will be useful in a variety of roles. This is one of my favorite things about UCLA: the diversity of academic paths offered allows students to create unique learning experiences that fit their specific interests. During your time here, you’ll meet people from all over campus with interesting combinations of majors and minors that are different from yours, and you’ll be inspired by their passion for their studies — I definitely am.

Besides the amazing academics, my favorite part about UCLA is the inborn sense of community. When you come to UCLA, you immediately become part of the Bruin network, which extends far beyond LA, California, and even the United States. Bruins live around the world but are woven together by the fabric of the UCLA experience, and being a student here means weaving a bit of that fabric for yourself, too. For example, one of the Ambassadors on my admitted student tour became one of my closest friends through one of the clubs I’m involved in; an alumnus I met at a college fair 40 miles from UCLA happened to be part of that same club 20 years earlier; even someone I sat across from at my internship in New York City this past summer was a Bruin! You feel part of something greater when you connect with people far outside of campus. That’s the power of the UCLA spirit. 

And yes, the community is huge, but you’ll find your spot within it, I promise. With UCLA’s vibrant student life, there are tons of groups to join and find your people in, from professional organizations to social clubs and everything in between. I’ve experienced a good mix of groups in my time here so far: the Student Alumni Association, a community-service group that’s become my family at UCLA; Product Space, a technology club that lets me geek out with other students over the latest tech trends; and Residential Life, an organization that builds community for students living on-campus through events, where I get to explore my passion for student affairs. I found my place here, and you will, too. There’s something here for everyone. 

I know you might be overwhelmed deciding between colleges right now, so take your time to make a sound decision. But I am so happy that UCLA is an option for you — coming here was the best decision I could’ve made. Congratulations again, and I hope to see you on campus soon!