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Showing posts from October, 2022

Finding My Community

Coming onto campus for the first time as a sophomore was especially daunting. Similar to most people, transitioning to in-person classes and dorm life was challenging. As I attended classes and other club meetings, I felt like I might have missed out on opportunities during the online year to reach out to people and make friends. Stuck with random roommates and no close friends on campus, I felt very isolated. This wasn’t the college experience that I had imagined. But then I started attending Belles meetings and events, and things began to slowly click into place.  Bruin Belles is such a uniquely amazing community where everyone is passionate about so many different things in terms of both academics and personal interests. The Belles community inspired me then and continues to encourage me to push the boundaries of my academic and professional pursuit, to put myself out there, and to carry a positive and optimistic attitude into all my endeavors. From volunteering at the LA Times Fest

A Blossoming and Welcoming Community

  As a second year transfer and a senior, I could not be happier that I am closing out my year with Belles as the Community Outreach Co-Director. Transferring from a community college in the Bay Area, I lacked a sense of community in the Los Angeles area that held similar interests to mine. I had engaged in extensive community service while I was at community college, and I knew I wanted to continue serving but I did not want to be limited to one cause. BBSA explores service in a multitude of communities, and we have worked with organizations like Dress for Success, Share a Meal, Baby2Baby, Harvest Home, and more. In an institution as large as UCLA, it is easy to feel consumed and overwhelmed, feel alienated from the rest of your peers, and experience “FOMO” as many may say. While I did not have the typical college experience, as many of us did not due to the pandemic, I was able to join a community of like-minded women that represented what I was seeking.  While we are focused on comm

One Year Ago, Today

One year ago today, I was working on my application for Bruin Belles. As I think back to that time of my life, I remember the immense sense of uncertainty I felt. Would Belles like me as much as I liked them? I look back at this time of my life, a mere 365 days ago, and hardly recognize the person I was. Belles has been a large part of this personal journey.  When I applied to BBSA, I was just beginning my junior year at UCLA. My first year had been cut short because of the Covid-19 pandemic, and my second year of college was entirely online. Determined to make the most out of the later half of my undergraduate career, I applied to Belles. I was resolute on finding a community that made UCLA feel like home (as cliche as it sounds) while supporting my personal and academic growth. After attending my first Belles event, I knew I had found what I was looking for (and more).  As an organization, BBSA has given me invaluable opportunities to serve the Los Angeles community, allowed me to le

Community at UCLA

I remember when I joined BBSA my first year. It was the COVID year — the year where the entire year was spent online. I joined BBSA on a whim as I sought to get involved with something outside of my usual course-load, and BBSA seemed to be a nice fit for everything that I wanted. More than anything, I wanted a community, and although I knew all interactions would be virtual, I wanted to meet other women who shared the same empathetic lens from which I view community. I met amazing people my first year at BBSA, and although I was slightly intimidated by the many accomplished members and alumni that clearly held BBSA with high regard, I found a vessel from which to channel my desire to help as well as foster a sense of self within the UCLA community that I had yet to feel completely immersed in. One of my favorite things about BBSA are the social activities that we have throughout the year that help to bond with other Belles and find those that you share common interests with. A memory

What Belles Has Given Me

My freshman year at UCLA was anything but normal. We were in the middle of a global pandemic, and the entirety of my first year was online. Although classes were fully virtual, I was privileged to have the opportunity to move to Westwood. Being away from my family for the first time was tough, and all I wanted was to have a community of friends I could lean on. Coming from Arizona, I believed the best way I could do this was through joining a sorority. I started the process of rush, but found myself questioning whether the process was right for me after being dropped from several houses. I felt defeated that it did not work out for me as the community I so greatly desired was not found. Amongst feeling disappointed about the rush process, my mom, a UCLA alum, told me to look into Bruin Belles. Bruin Belles was an organization that existed while she was a student, but she had never joined it. I looked into it and applied, and the rest was history. I had finally found the community that