What is UCLA Known For? (2023)

Why Is UCLA So Prestigious?

The State Normal School of Los Angeles, which later became the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), was founded in 1882. Its main objective was to prepare instructors. In 1919, it changed its name to the Southern Branch of the University of California, becoming the second college in the UC system. When UCLA’s athletic teams joined the Pacific Coast Conference in 1926, the term “Bruins” was legally adopted by the school. What is UCLA known for? UCLA is a 419-acre campus located in Westwood, a part of urban Los Angeles, five miles from the Pacific Ocean. The College of Letters and Sciences is one of many esteemed graduate schools at UCLA.

UCLA is one of the few “Public Ivies,” or public universities with academic standing and results comparable to those of the prestigious Ivy League institutions. UCLA has a long list of distinguished alumni and faculty.

With unrivaled training, cutting-edge facilities, cutting-edge research, and access to many job prospects through faculty and alumni, UCLA delivers the best education available. By training future leaders in science, industry, and the arts, UCLA aims to serve the State of California.

What is UCLA Known For? (1)

Now, you might ask “Why is UCLA so prestigious?” UCLA has ties to people who have won the highest accolades in the world, including five Turing Award winners and 27 Nobel Prize winners. Together with UC Berkeley, UCLA is ranked as the 20th best university in the country by U.S. News & World Report.

What is UCLA known for? UCLA performs exceptionally well in specialized lists. According to U.S. News, UCLA is the top public institution in the nation, the fifth-best school for veterans, the tenth-best school for nursing and computer science, and the greatest school overall.

Who Is the Most Famous Person From UCLA?

“Who is the most famous person from UCLA?” might be a common query among college applicants. Part of what is UCLA known for is the campus’ location within Los Angeles, which is a popular destination for celebrities and notable persons to attend due to its convenience. These are a few of the well-known UCLA graduates over the years.

What is UCLA Known For? (2)

James Franco

James Franco, a well-known actor who starred in the popular film 127 Hours, is regarded as an A-lister. Although he left this college after his first year to pursue his acting career, he ultimately returned and graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Jackie Robinson

Jackie Robinson is a real historical figure. This man established the segregationist sports culture. He was one of the first Black players on the UCLA football team in 1939 and also participated in baseball, track, football, and basketball.

Jackie Robinson assisted in removing racial barriers while supporting the Civil Rights Movement. Jackie ended segregation in professional baseball for the first time on April 15, 1947, but he did not go on to play in the NFL.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, one of UCLA’s most well-known basketball players, played for coach John Wooden. He ended up playing professionally in the NBA. He was an athlete while he was a student at UCLA, but also have been interested in academics.


Kareem competed in three back-to-back NCAA championships before turning into a writer. His writings cover politics, institutionalized racism, and the intersection of race and religion in sports. It all started when he was at UCLA.

Taylor Wang

Although he may not be well-known, he nevertheless made history. Taylor Wang became the first Chinese-American astronaut in 1985 after participating in the Challenger Spacelab 3 mission. Taylor owns numerous U.S. patents in a variety of scientific fields in addition to having earned three degrees.

Ralph Bunche

Students frequently get lost at Bunche Hall, which is a well-known location. You wouldn’t know this if you didn’t go to UCLA, but you ought to be familiar with Ralph Bunche.

The first Black recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize was Ralph Bunche. He received the top honors at UCLA and afterward received a Ph.D. in political science from Harvard. He finally rose to the position of principal secretary of the UN Palestine Commission. He also won the Nobel Prize at this time.

Steve Martin

Transferring in might sometimes be the simplest method to get to a new college. Steve Martin has done that. He changed majors to theater in 1967, but he ultimately left without earning a diploma.

Steve Martin is a well-known Bruin who gained notoriety for his roles in important films including The Pink Panther and Father of the Bride. Steve Martin has also won Grammys for Best Country Instrumental Performance and Best Bluegrass Album.

Mayim Bialik

The Big Bang Theory is a well-known and adored program. You would recognize the actress who plays Dr. Amy Farrah Fowler if you have ever watched the show.

She obtained a B.S. in neuroscience from UCLA. Additionally, she obtained dual minors in Hebrew and Jewish studies. She eventually went to UCLA to complete her Ph.D. in neuroscience.

Mayim now directs programs for girls to pursue STEM-related disciplines, taking inspiration from the show in which she had a starring role.

Susan Wojcicki

You may not be familiar with her well-known name but she is the CEO of Youtube. Susan first majored in history and literature at Harvard University before earning her Master of Science in economics at UC Santa Cruz. She finally enrolled at UCLA as a Bruin and graduated with a Master of Business Administration degree.

The founder of 23andMe, Anne Wojcicki, is one of Susan’s two sisters. She joined the tech sector after graduating from UCLA. Susan joined the team that created Google in 1999 and was hired as its first marketing manager. As of now, she assists with running Youtube as the CEO.

Francis Ford-Coppola

Francis Ford-Coppola was the director and producer of The Godfather, arguably one of the most well-known movies ever made.

He earned a master’s degree from UCLA film school before he rose to fame in the movie industry. Francis ultimately received numerous accolades for his work as a film producer, including six Oscars. He is a tremendously successful alumnus and even has his own wineries.

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Randy Newman

Randy Newman, who may be one of the graduates who are better known based on a song, created the Toy Story score. With just one semester remaining, Randy was almost done with his music degree at UCLA.

Randy eventually won six Grammys in addition to other awards such as Emmys and Oscars. His melodies are famous and his voice is well-known.

Randy has been inducted into The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame as of 2013, despite not being a member of a rock band. He has contributed to eight Pixar films, making him a Disney Legend as well.

Russell Westbrook

Russell Westbrook, who is best known as a notable basketball player, participated in 75 games for the basketball squad. This is what ultimately made him one of the most well-known UCLA alums.

Russell was a member of the University of California Los Angeles squad, where he earned honors and a degree in sports communication.

He was initially selected by the Seattle SuperSonics in the 2008 NBA Draft. He also represented Team USA in the 2012 Olympics. This team was subsequently renamed Oklahoma City Thunder. Russell Westbrook holds the record for having the most triple-doubles in a single NBA season.

What Is UCLA Known For Academically?

If you are interested to get into UCLA, it’s important to know what is UCLA known for academically.

What is UCLA Known For? (3)

More than 125 undergraduate majors are available at UCLA in six academic divisions:

  • The College of Letters and Sciences
  • School of the Arts and Architecture
  • School of Engineering and Applied Science
  • School of Music
  • School of Theater, Film and Television
  • School of Nursing

UCLA offers great academics across the board as a highly regarded national research university, but the following programs deserve special mention:

  • UCLA’s School of Engineering is well-respected, rigorous, and cross-disciplinary, preparing engineers in the fields of bioengineering, civil & environmental, chemical & biomolecular, and mathematics. A tiny community within the greater UCLA student body, the Samueli School of Engineering contains roughly 4,000 undergraduates and another 2,500 graduate students in the 2021-2022 academic year.
  • UCLA’s School of Theater, Film, and Television (TFT) recently changed from a two-year program (the last two years of college after spending the first two years taking general ed classes, or transfers from community colleges) to a full four-year program that admits students as freshmen.
  • UCLA’s College of Letters and Sciences is the largest undergraduate institution where more than 85% of students major in one of the college’s more than 100 majors. There is no advantage to choosing one major over another within the College of Letters and Science on the UCLA application because UCLA examines all applicants to Letters and Science equally and does not segregate applicants by major.

Overall, UCLA excels in a range of majors that prepare you for graduate school, including pre-professional advising for pre-med and pre-law students.

In addition to what is UCLA known for, the School of Law’s Ziffren Institute of UCLA boasts one of the best entertainment law departments in the country. Students attend meetings with significant businesses like Microsoft and Warner Brothers to discuss issues like copyright and patent law. Additionally, Ziffren offers students internship possibilities with local production firms and talent agencies.

The David Geffen School of Medicine is a separate yet equally significant institution from entertainment. Future doctors are trained at Geffen, one of the top medical schools in the country, in its numerous teaching hospitals. Among these is the UCLA Medical Center, a level-I trauma facility for kids that is frequently rated as one of the top five in the nation.

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What Are Some Traditions At UCLA?

As we’ve seen, UCLA must uphold its enviable reputation. But that doesn’t imply that everything is effort and study. UCLA offers a variety of customs to keep students interested in campus life, both formal and bizarre. We will now learn more about “What are some traditions at UCLA?”

What is UCLA Known For? (4)

Midnight Yell

One of the funniest rituals is also one of the most significant. Students gather each year during finals week to perform the “Midnight Yell.” As the name implies, the gathered students shout in a cathartic manner at midnight in protest of the stress brought on by exams.

UCLA UniCamp

The UCLA UniCamp was created to assist young people in urban Los Angeles. Over 1200 kids take part in UniCamp every year, where they play and learn to read alongside UCLA students. Participants in UniCamp have the chance to truly impact the lives of others by playing on a fully allocated outdoor summer camp.

LA Hacks

There is the yearly LA Hacks competition for techies. LA Hacks is a tech conference and skills competition that lets students showcase their prowess. Over 150 multifaceted creative projects are finished during the multi-day hackathon, which is open to students of all majors. Participants are doing it to help the less fortunate.

What Are the Extracurricular Activities At UCLA?

What are the extracurricular activities at UCLA? The institution offers a wide variety of clubs in addition to its numerous traditions to encourage students to feel engaged and invested in their collegiate experience. These clubs range from social gatherings to ones that focus on personal development.

What is UCLA Known For? (5)

An annual Enormous Activities Fair that fills Royce Quad presents students with over 1,000 groups from UCLA’s thriving extracurricular community.

The Student Alumni Association, one of its most prominent clubs, has been hosting Dinner for 12 Strangers for more than 50 years. Through this community tradition, more than 3,700 students, alumni, and faculty members host more than 500 international dinners.

What is UCLA known for? This “Public Ivy” is renowned for its thriving startup culture, which is supported by a wide variety of organizations and accelerator programs that assist students in coming up with ideas and carrying them out for their own businesses. Since 2000, startups created with the help of UCLA technology have been valued at more than $30 billion. AWAK Technologies and Sike Insights, the two notable firms that have grown out of UCLA’s startup culture and offer medical devices and AI-powered productivity products, respectively.

Anyone in the school is welcome to join the competitive ballroom dancing group known as the Dancesport Club. It not only provides tuition in ballroom dancing but also places a strong focus on teamwork. Although the organization works toward contests, its primary goals are to have fun and make new friends.

The Bruin Leaders Project is one of UCLA’s more significant student organizations. The goal of the BLP is to develop its participants into “better students, leaders, and citizens.” It accomplishes this purpose by establishing relationships within the neighborhood’s economic and political circles and through several volunteer endeavors.

The Disney Club at UCLA is an organization for folks who love everything from the Mouse House, so check it out if you’re still a kid at heart. Members like spending time together, planning vacations to Disney Land, and watching Disney movies.

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In athletics, what is UCLA known for? UCLA is second only to Stanford in the number of NCAA team championships won with 118. There are 25 NCAA Division I sports offered at the university, with 14 for women and 11 for men.

The basketball teams for men and women are both successful, taking home 11 and 4 titles, respectively. It seems sensible that students would spend hours waiting outside Pauley Pavilion before basketball games or preparing for the yearly rivalry game with USC given that the football team is as successful.

The school also offers a wide range of club sports for students to choose from. The competitive intramural sports program, which features 30 leagues, tournaments, meetings, and other unique activities, attracts more than 8,000 students. There are numerous intramural sports, including rugby, table tennis, and even Quidditch, to name a few.

What is UCLA known for? Academics at UCLA are of the highest caliber, as shown by the stringent GPA standards, a wide range of average SAT scores, and admission data from the UCLA Class of 2025.

Make sure to submit all your materials well in advance of the UCLA application deadline if you decide UCLA is the school for you. Keep in mind that there is no UCLA early admission option thus, you should start your preparations if you want to attend this prestigious university.

At AdmissionSight, we have over 10 years of experience guiding students through the competitive admissions process to get accepted to the top universities in the world. On average, 75% of AdmissionSight students are admitted to an Ivy League university, Stanford, MIT, UChicago, and Caltech, one of the highest track records in the industry. Feel free to set up an appointment today to book your initial consultation.

  • What is UCLA Known For? (6)


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What is UCLA is known for? ›

Located in LA's Westwood neighborhood, five miles from the Pacific Ocean, UCLA encompasses the College of Letters and Sciences and a number of graduate schools and programs, including the highly ranked. UCLA also has a prestigious School of Theater, Film and Television, and School of Dentistry.

What majors is UCLA best known for? ›

The most popular majors at University of California, Los Angeles include: Social Sciences; Biological and Biomedical Sciences; Psychology; Engineering; Mathematics and Statistics; Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies; Visual and Performing Arts; Computer and Information Sciences and Support Services; and English Language ...

Can I get into UCLA with a 3.5 GPA? ›

The average GPA of admitted transfer students is above 3.5 and admitted students have completed most or all major preparatory courses. We give highest priority to applicants from California community colleges and other UC campuses. UCLA admits students for fall quarter only.

What are 3 important things about UCLA? ›

About UCLA: Fast facts
  • UCLA campus: 419 acres located in Westwood, a community of Los Angeles. ...
  • Chancellor: Gene D. ...
  • History: Founded in 1919 as the Southern Branch of the University of California.
3 Aug 2022

What is UCLA best at? ›

7 Best Majors At UCLA
  • Business. Business degrees are some of the most popular in the country and for good reason. ...
  • Engineering. Engineering degrees are also very popular and offer students a wealth of job opportunities. ...
  • Political Science and Government. ...
  • Sociology. ...
  • Computer Science. ...
  • Economics. ...
  • Psychology.

What does UCLA look at the most? ›

Using the admission review process, we focus on successful applicants who demonstrate intellectual curiosity, leadership, initiative and tenacity. They are the students who would contribute the most to the UCLA learning community.

Why is UCLA the number 1 public university? ›

It is a recognition of our students' brilliance, creativity, ambition and persistence, both in their time on campus and in their lives as alumni.” UCLA shares the top honor among public schools this year with UC Berkeley.

What the lowest GPA UCLA takes? ›

UCLA GPA Requirements

At a minimum, you must earn a 3.0 GPA or better (3.4 for nonresidents) in all college preparatory courses. No grades can be lower than a C.

What is the lowest GPA UCLA accepted? ›

You might find yourself asking – “What GPA do you need to get into UCLA?” UCLA candidates must additionally meet the UCLA GPA requirements for admission in-state. Students must have a 3.0 GPA or higher, while out-of-state students must have a 3.4 GPA or greater.

What is a B+ at UCLA GPA? ›

Grade points are used to calculate the overall Grade-Point Average (GPA) of course work completed in a program of study leading to degrees, certificates, and other academic testimonials. The grades of A+ and A are weighted with 4.0 grade points, A- = 3.7; B+ = 3.3, B = 3.0, B- = 2.7; C+ = 2.3, C = 2.0, C- = 1.7; etc.

Why is UCLA so amazing? ›

The site awards UCLA an A+ grade, with special acknowledgment for its academics, its diversity emphasis, and the overall value it provides. Even better, Niche places UCLA in the number one slot on its lists of the Best College Campuses in America, Best College Food in America, and Top Public Universities in America.

What is UCLA reputation? ›

UCLA and UC Berkeley also tied for 20th overall university nationally and seventh overall university nationally for veterans. UC Santa Barbara, UC Irvine, UC San Diego and UC Davis also all ranked in the top 10 public schools, according to the report.

What are 2 interesting facts about UCLA? ›

UCLA's colors are “True Blue” and gold, and were chosen specifically to represent the state's ocean and wildflowers. In its early history, the “Bruins,” UCLA's football team, were known as the “Cubs.” This was because UCLA was still a younger extension of parent campus UC Berkeley.

What is the #1 University in the world? ›

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

Is UCLA the hardest college to get into? ›

Hardest UC Schools to Get Into

Both featuring acceptance rates well under 20%, UC Berkeley and UCLA are the most competitive of the UC institutions. Admissions pros place these well-regarded schools among other highly selective colleges like the University of Notre Dame, USC, and Georgetown.

What is the hardest University to get into? ›

Harvard ranked as the toughest school in the country to get into. It has a 5% acceptance rate, according to Niche. Stanford came in second on the list— with an acceptance rate of 5% as well. However, it accepts students with slightly lower test scores, Niche says.

What are UCLA core values? ›

Our Mission

In all of our pursuits, we strive for excellence and diversity, recognizing that openness and inclusion produce true quality. These values underlie our three institutional responsibilities: education, research and public service.

What are the 3 most popular majors at UCLA? ›

At the University of California-Los Angeles, the most popular majors students study are Sociology, Political Science and Government, General, and Econometrics and Quantitative Economics. In fact, the University of California-Los Angeles grants 703 degrees annually to graduating Sociology students.

What is the #1 college in California? ›

Stanford University

Is UCLA better than Berkeley? ›

UCB has more academic prestige but UCLA is known to be better at sports and has more students. UCLA is ranked as the top known public university and UCB is the second best.

Who is UCLA's biggest rival? ›

The UCLA–USC rivalry is the American collegiate athletics rivalry between the UCLA Bruins sports teams of the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and USC Trojans teams of the University of Southern California (USC).

Can I get into UCLA without straight A's? ›

You'll need nearly straight A's to get into UCLA. The unweighted GPA for students admitted in Fall 2022 was a 4.0 average. The median weighted GPA was 4.58.

What is a B+ at UCLA? ›

Grade Points
GradeGrade Points per Unit
11 more rows

What is the highest GPA? ›

The unweighted scale is most common, and the highest possible GPA on this scale is a 4.0. The unweighted scale doesn't take the difficulty of a student's classes into account. Weighted scales are also used at many high schools. Typically, they go up to a 5.0.

What's the easiest major to get into UCLA? ›

10 Easiest Majors to Transfer into UCLA
1.African American Studies55%
2.Asian Humanities63%
3.Gender Studies59%
4.Pre-European Studies67%
6 more rows
19 Jan 2017

What grades do UCLA look at? ›

All GPAs are calculated from courses completed in grades 10 and 11. The fully weighted GPA includes an extra grade point for all UC-approved honors courses (which include AP, IB, school-based honors and transferable college courses) in which a grade of C or higher is earned. The maximum value possible is 5.00.

Is UCLA a Tier 1 school? ›

1 public university by U.S. News & World Report for sixth straight year. As a first-generation student, Alvina Zhan knew that getting accepted to a top-tier university was only the first of her challenges.

Is C passing UCLA? ›

A grade of C or better is required to earn a Passed; a C- or below will earn a Not Passed grade. A grade of C- may satisfy many requirements (e.g., General Education, elective) but a Not Passed grade will not earn any credit or satisfy requirements.

Is 93 an A or a minus? ›

What are letter grades and how do they convert to percentages? Common examples of grade conversion are: A+ (97–100), A (93–96), A- (90–92), B+ (87–89), B (83–86), B- (80–82), C+ (77–79), C (73–76), C- (70–72), D+ (67–69), D (65–66), D- (below 65).

What is a fail at UCLA? ›

At UCLA, all of your assignments and final grade for each course will come in a form of a letter grade A,B, C, D, or F. An “A” being the highest grade possible and “F” meaning you failed the course. Some instructors also use the plus/minus system to differentiate your letter grade even more.

What is UCLA most popular major? ›

At the University of California-Los Angeles, the most popular majors students study are Sociology, Political Science and Government, General, and Econometrics and Quantitative Economics. In fact, the University of California-Los Angeles grants 703 degrees annually to graduating Sociology students.

What is a good GPA to get into UCLA? ›

GPA and test scores of middle 25%-75% students
High School GPA4.18 - 4.32
ACT Composite Score29 - 32
ACT English Language Arts30 - 35
SAT Evidence Based Reading & Writing670 - 760
2 more rows

What makes UCLA hard to get into? ›

Simply defined, strong grades are required for admittance to UCLA, and the institution considers them “extremely essential” when making admissions choices. Furthermore, you'll need to have a high GPA to get into UCLA and meet both the school's academic criteria and the Academic Index criterion.

What is the #1 college major? ›

Major Business and Management

What is the easiest major in UCLA? ›

10 Easiest Majors to Transfer into UCLA
1.African American Studies3.21 - 3.41
2.Asian Humanities3.51 - 3.79
3.Gender Studies3.32 - 3.67
4.Pre-European Studies3.10 - 3.38
6 more rows
19 Jan 2017

What is the hardest college to get into? ›

Harvard ranked as the toughest school in the country to get into. It has a 5% acceptance rate, according to Niche. Stanford came in second on the list— with an acceptance rate of 5% as well. However, it accepts students with slightly lower test scores, Niche says.

What is the #1 public university in the world? ›

1 public university for 6th year in a row.

Why is UCLA prestigious? ›

USC, UCLA, and Stanford are among the most prestigious universities outside the Ivy League. These top universities have challenging classes, distinguished professors, competitive acceptance rates, and distinguished alumni networks like their Ivy League counterparts.

Is it harder to get into UCLA or Cal? ›

Both the universities require students with high GPAs, SAT scores & ACT scores. UCLA is extremely selective and only enrols students who have a GPA of 3.9 or more. UC Berkeley requires a GPA of 3.89 from all its students. The average SAT score should be between the SAT scale of 1405 and 1600.

Is getting into UCLA a big deal? ›

How hard is it to get into UCLA? According to Forbes, UCLA is considered a most selective school with an acceptance rate of 12%. Over 139,000 students applied for the UCLA Class of 2025.


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