This post is a part of the Student Blogger series - each post is written by a current UCLA Anderson student, and provides first-hand perspectives and experiences about being an MBA student at UCLA Anderson.
“Ohhh, A double bruin, huh?”
That’s what people say when I tell them I studied at UCLA for my bachelor’s degree. A bruin, for those who aren’t familiar, is another name for a bear. The story goes that UCLA took the bruin as its mascot from UC Berkeley (UCLA’s older, sister university) whose mascot is the golden Bears. UCLA students colloquially refer to themselves as ‘bruins,’ and the term “double bruin” came to designate someone, like myself, who came back to UCLA for graduate studies.
Royce Hall, arguably UCLA's most iconic building, was modeled after the Basilica of Sant'Ambrogio in Milan, Italy. If something looks a bit off, you wouldn't be wrong. The building was designed with numerous architectural inconsistencies. How many do you see?
The interesting thing is that such a practice is so prevalent that a term was created simply to describe such individuals. Surprisingly, or perhaps not, there are many students at UCLA Anderson who started their careers here not that long ago, and like me, they chose to come back.
The UCLA campus is often described as two pieces, North Campus and South Campus, which are divided by Bruin Walk, a long, wide path cutting through the center of UCLA. North Campus is home to many of UCLA’s arts, humanities, and business departments, while South Campus is where you would find the medical school, engineering school and math & sciences departments. It’s important to note that these are not discrete campuses; engineering students will have classes in the Humanities building, while you would also see English majors studying in the Biomedical Library. The distinction is colloquial, but ingrained in the culture of undergraduates.
In 2013, I graduated from the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science with a B.S. in Electrical Engineering, so I spent a lot of time south of Bruin Walk. Between classes, though, I would often walk to North Campus. I enjoyed the jovial atmosphere outside Powell Library, and the picturesque quad was always a great place to relax. Now I spend my days at UCLA Anderson, nestled in the heart of North Campus. Royce Hall towers over it, reminding Anderson students like myself that they aren’t just at UCLA Anderson. They’re at UCLA.
But what does that mean to Anderson students? UCLA is unusual in many ways, including having highly-rated programs across the entire professional spectrum. MBA students engaging in business ventures can source ideas or intellectual capital from top-rated engineering and medical schools. Socially, business students can enjoy the endless opportunities given to undergraduates, everything from NCAA athletics to world-renowned musical performers to early screenings of Hollywood movies. Of course, UCLA is in arguably the nicest part of Los Angeles. On any given afternoon, surfing in Venice, hiking in Malibu, and dining at endless restaurants are all on the table, while weekend trips to Santa Barbara, San Diego, or Las Vegas are also popular.
“Why Anderson?” That’s what you’ll be asking your classmates when you start here next fall. For many people like myself, the question we asked wasn’t “Why Anderson?”, but “Why not?”
Student Blogger: Andrew Protopsaltis '18
Undergrad: UCLA - Electrical Engineering
Pre-MBA: Northrop Grumman
Leadership@Anderson: Admissions Ambassador Corps - Marketing Representative