Choosing UCLA meant choosing community

When I chose UCLA back in 2017, it was a no-brainer. Growing up around the LA area, there was nothing really new or special about it. I came up here for summer programs and field trips at least once every year in high school. I didn’t even visit the other schools I was considering after…

A Transfer, a Bruin, an Optimist!

I would be lying to you if I said UCLA was my dream school. As a matter of fact, I had no dream school. I knew so little about the higher education system that sometimes I am amazed that I am here today 6 weeks away from graduation. However, I always knew I would go…

Searching for today, but instead I found tomorrow

Early on in my schooling, I internalized messages that college was not for me. As a first-generation, low-income, non-traditional Chicano student, I clearly remember being told by my high school science teacher to “get used to taking order at McDonald’s” after him accusing me of being drunk. In addition to these messages, I was also…

Learning and Growing at UCLA

At nine years old, a random thought popped into my head: “I’m going to go to UCLA.” I have no idea where this idea came from. No one I knew had ever gone to UCLA. Quite frankly, I do not know when or where I heard about the university, but I knew wanted to be…

What UCLA truly offers

I first stepped foot on UCLA’s campus when my older brother was touring colleges to try and get a sense of where he would apply.  Although I was only a freshman in high school at the time, the campus had alluring control over me.  I was aware of UCLA’s historically dominant academic and athletic programs…