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University of California, Los Angeles

(Redirected from UCLA)

The University of California, Los Angeles, popularly known as UCLA, is a public, coeducational university situated in the neighborhood of Westwood within the city of Los Angeles. It is the second-oldest campus in the University of California system and the largest university in the state of California.

University of California, Los Angeles

Motto Fiat Lux
(Latin, "Let There Be Light")
Established 1919
School type Public
Chancellor Albert Carnesale
Location Los Angeles, California, USA
Enrollment 26,000 undergraduate,
12,000 graduate
Faculty 3,238
Endowment US$1.2 billion
Campus Urban, 419 acres (1.7 km²)
Sports teams Bruins


UCLA was founded in 1919 as the "Southern Branch of the University of California" on Vermont Avenue in the City of Los Angeles. In 1927, the school was renamed the "University of California at Los Angeles"; the word 'at' was officially replaced by a comma in 1958, in line with other UC campuses. Also in 1927, the state broke ground at a new campus on the chaparral-covered hills of a real estate development called Westwood. The first classes were held in 1929 in the four original buildings on the 400 acre (1.6 km²) campus.


Today the campus comprises some 163 buildings across 419 acres (1.7 km²) in the western part of Los Angeles, north of the Westwood shopping district and just south of Sunset Boulevard. The campus is quite close, but not actually adjacent to the San Diego Freeway, an oversight avoided in the planning of newer campuses like Irvine (next to Highway 73) and San Diego (which is split by Interstate 5).

The campus is informally divided into North Campus and South Campus, which are both on the eastern half of the university's land. North Campus is the original campus core and its buildings tend to be more old-fashioned in appearance and are usually completely sheathed in brick. North Campus is home to the arts, humanities, social sciences, law, and business programs. North Campus is centered around tree-lined Dickson Plaza, which has appeared in many movies such as The Nutty Professor.

South Campus is newer and has a dense concentration of high-rise concrete buildings with occasional brick ornaments. South Campus is home to physical sciences, mathematical sciences, engineering, and the Center for Health Sciences.

Undergraduate housing is concentrated in four high-rise towers on a ridge on the western side of the campus, which is called "the Hill". Ackerman Union, the campus student center, and athletic facilities like Pauley Pavilion fill the shallow valley in the middle of the campus. The Hill is linked to North Campus and South Campus by a heavily traveled pathway called Bruin Walk. Several construction projects are in progress, including new housing facilities.

The university also owns a high-rise office tower called UCLA Wilshire Center on Wilshire Boulevard in the Westwood area, one mile (1.6 km) to the south. All off-campus administrative functions are housed in UCLA Wilshire Center, including the Office of the Chancellor.

The campus has a large number of parking garages, both above-ground and below-ground, and reportedly has the second-largest number of parking spaces of any university in the United States. Despite that fact, the university continues to suffer from a severe parking shortage which is further compounded by Southern California's regional housing shortage. The university has given priority in allocation of parking spaces to staff and students commuting from distant locations like Santa Barbara and Anaheim, while encouraging all students living within a 5 mile radius to use mass transit.



UCLA is organized into the following schools and colleges:

  • College of Letters and Science
  • School of the Arts and Architecture
  • Graduate School of Education and Information Studies
  • The Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science
  • School of Law
  • The Anderson School of Management
  • School of Public Policy and Social Research
  • School of Theater Film and Television
  • The David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
  • Neuropsychiatric Institute
  • School of Nursing
  • School of Dentistry
  • School of Public Health

The five health-related schools above, plus the UCLA Medical Center and associated research and treatment centers are collectively known as the UCLA Center for Health Sciences (CHS).


UCLA has a distinguished academic program. Of the 36 Ph.D. programs examined by the National Research Council, UCLA had 33 rank in the top 20 in terms of faculty quality. 12 departments were ranked in the top 10:

  • History (6)
  • Geography (8)
  • Political Science (8)
  • Psychology (4)
  • Sociology (5)
  • Anthropology (8)
  • Chemistry (9)
  • Aerospace Engineering (10)
  • Physiology (4)
  • Philosophy (6)
  • Linguistics (3)
  • Classics (9)



The school's sports teams are called the Bruins, with colors powder-blue and gold. (Note the parallel to Cal's Golden Bears, with colors Yale Blue and "gold"—in practice yellow.) The Bruins participate in NCAA Division I-A as part of the Pacific Ten Conference.

Powder Keg Blue Football Uniforms - When Red Sanders came to UCLA for the 1949 season he redesigned the uniforms. Sanders added a gold loop on the shoulders -- the UCLA Stripe. The Navy Blue was changed to a lighter shade of Blue. Sanders figured that the lighter Blue would look better on the field and in film. He would dub the uniform -- Powder Keg Blue -- powder blue with an explosive kick. Over a quarter of a century later, Sports Illustrated would proclaim the UCLA home Football Uniforms the best looking uniforms in college football.

As of 2004, UCLA has 94 NCAA championships, more than any other school. Among these championships, the most notable are the mens basketball championships. Throughout UCLA's rich basketball history, 11 basketball championships have been won ('64, '65, '67, '68, '69, '70, '71, '72, '73, 75, '95). Holding the record for the most basketball championships won, however, is not the only incredible achievement possessed by UCLA. From 1971 to 1974, UCLA mens basketball won an unprecedented 88 consecutive games, a record that many sports experts consider unbreakable. Past rosters of UCLA basketball teams have been filled with basketball greats such as Bill Walton, Kareem Abdul Jabbar, and Reggie Miller.

UCLA enjoys a traditional sports rivalry with the nearby University of Southern California.

Traditions and Events

The Los Angeles Times Book Fair, held in the Spring, is the largest annual gathering of publishers and authors in the country.

The UCLA Jazz Reggae Festival gathers musicians from both genres for a two day concert held every year over the Memorial Day weekend.

Spring Sing is a yearly show of student talent held at the Los Angeles Tennis Center on campus.

Peripheral Enterprises

Unlike its siblings in the UC system, UCLA is unusual in that it operates two major enterprises that are somewhat peripheral to its academic mission.

UCLA Healthcare

The world-renowned UCLA Medical Center is actually part of a larger healthcare system, UCLA Healthcare, which also operates a hospital in Santa Monica and seven primary care clinics located across Los Angeles County. In addition, the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine uses two Los Angeles County hospitals as teaching hospitals: Harbor-UCLA Medical Center and Olive View-UCLA Medical Center. In all, there are four hospitals in Los Angeles County that carry the UCLA name.

As of 2004, U.S. News and World Report has ranked the UCLA Medical Center as the best hospital in the Western United States for 15 consecutive years, and placed it among its honor roll of best hospitals in the United States.

UCLA Housing and Hospitality Services

Besides operating the usual dormitories and apartment buildings, UCLA also runs a small, full-service, on-campus hotel, the UCLA Guest House, and a full-service conference center, the UCLA Conference Center, in the San Bernardino Mountains near Lake Arrowhead.

Notable faculty, past and present

Notable alumni

Nobel Laureates


Arts, Film and Literature

Business and Law


Academia, Science and Technology


External links

  • Main UCLA site
  • Official athletics site
  • The Daily Bruin, the school newspaper
  • Campus maps and landmarks
  • Royce Hall Webcam
  • UCLA History Project
  • UCLA School of Law's Williams Project - the first legal think-tank on Sexual Orientation Law
  • BruinWalk - Student-run web portal that features professor reviews

University of California
Berkeley | Davis | Irvine | Los Angeles | Merced | Riverside
San Diego | San Francisco | Santa Barbara | Santa Cruz

Last updated: 02-08-2005 09:48:51
Last updated: 02-22-2005 01:16:43