Bruin Stories

Read about some of our most noteworthy alumni and be inspired to recommend a Bruin for a UCLA story. Together, we won’t only share stories, we’ll live them.

Edith Keyser White ’31, Teresa White Riddle ’68, M.Ed. ’76, and Alice White Parrish ’69

Edith Keyser was on the verge of graduating as part of the second-ever cohort of students to complete their degrees at UCLA’s new campus in Westwood. But there was this annoying “technicality” standing in her way: in 1931, the University had a physical education requirement, and Edith was just not very good at PE. She […]

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Doug Chiang

Doug Chiang, Vice President and Executive Creative Director at Lucasfilm, is featured in an interview on, in which he discusses his experience at UCLA as a film major and how the diversity on campus was a revelation. Chiang was born in Taiwan but grew up in Michigan, where he recognized he was not the […]

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Araceli Almazan ’04

General Counsel for the UCLA Alumni Board of Directors, Araceli Almazan ‘04 has been guided by her passion for law, policy and politics. Her commitment to UCLA arose from the impact UCLA made during a pivotal time in her life, “UCLA has a special place in my heart. The university gave so much to me […]

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Eunice Lee ’17

Years in Peace Corps: 2017-19 Country: Namibia Region/City: Kavango West Eunice Lee ’17 had never traveled abroad until she joined the Peace Corps. At UCLA, Lee was involved with the Alumni Scholars Club, Alumni Mentor Program and the Achievement Scholars Club and believes that taking on leadership roles as a student helped her become a […]

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Wendy Maya ’10

Years in Peace Corps: 2012-14 Country: Mozambique Region/City: Chimoio Wendy Maya ʼ10 immigrated from Mexico to the U.S. with her family at age three. At UCLA, the first-generation college student enjoyed studying abroad, working part-time and taking Muay Thai classes, a type of boxing. In her senior year, while weighing her future options, she attended […]

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Michelle Bennett ’99, M.S.W. ’01

Years in Peace Corps: 2016-18 Country: China Region/City: Gansu Province The opening scene from the classic 80s movie “Dirty Dancing” inspired Michelle Bennett ’99, M.S.W. ’01, to enlist in the Peace Corps. In the movie, the character Baby Houseman narrates from the future about her younger self, “Before President Kennedy was shot, before the Beatles […]

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Emre Titizer, MBA exp. ’21

Years in Peace Corps: 2017-19 Country: Timor-Leste Region/City: Venilale, Baucau District “The Peace Corps service is for anyone who wants to make a positive impact in the world, while challenging themselves and gaining a new perspective,” says Emre Titizer, MBA exp. ’21. After graduating from UC Davis, Titizer moved to San Francisco to work as […]

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Adam Shahar, M.P.H. ’19, M.S.N. exp. ’21

Years in Peace Corps: 2014-16 Country: Ecuador City/Region: Pasaje, El Oro Province Adam Shahar, M.P.H. ’19, wanted to serve communities with a health need, “I wanted to challenge myself outside of academics, where I had an opportunity to grow and see things from a different perspective.” He first learned about the Peace Corps through his […]

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Hamilton Luu ’15

Years in Peace Corps: 2015-17 Country: Fiji Region/City: Taveuni Island “The most important advice for anyone considering the Peace Corps is this ꟷ expect to gain more from the entire experience than you could ever give,” says Hamilton Luu ’15. While a UCLA freshman, Luu enrolled in a Global Studies course that changed his world […]

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Ryan Ahari ’16

Years in Peace Corps: 2019-21 Country: Armenia Region/City: Gegharkunik Province Ryan Ahari ’16 learned about the Peace Corps in a high school government class. With a belief in leaving the world a better place grounded in his faith, Ahari knew his acceptance to UCLA would lead him to his goal of joining the Peace Corps. […]

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Jenny Wang ’01

Years in Peace Corps: 2010-12 Country: Cameroon Region/City: Baré, Littoral Region of Cameroon A traveler at heart, Taiwan native Jenny Wang ’01 is inspired to learn about other cultures. When a friend mentioned the Peace Corps, Wang, who had recently applied for U.S. citizenship was intrigued. “I needed a change of pace, and it seemed […]

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