Our Top Most Famous UCLA Alumni

Famous people who went to ucla

Video Famous people who went to ucla

UCLA Bruins mascot

Established in 1919, the University of California, Los Angeles is ranked the best campus among public universities and tied for 19th among all national universities in the United States. is one of the most sought after schools, and with good reason.

ucla is most famous for the prestigious school of theatre, film and television, which brings many rising stars to campus. however, this campus is also known for its dental school.

Being located within Los Angeles makes it a hot spot for celebrities to apply and attend campus. Whether you’re attending UCLA now, hope to go there someday, or just want to know more about who’s attended, here are some of UCLA’s famous alumni over the years.

james franco

127 hours staring James Franco

Known for starring in the hit movie 127 Hours, James France is considered a standout. Even though he dropped out of this university after his freshman year to pursue said acting career, he ended up coming back and becoming a famous alumnus of the University of California, Los Angeles.

get a title in English

Imagine sitting next to james franco in english, which is also the subject in which he eventually earned a bachelor’s degree. he went on to earn a master’s degree and several doctorates as well. Most people say English learners can only become teachers, but James Franco became a superstar.

jackie robinson

Jackie Robinson, baseball allstar

let’s talk about someone who made real history, jackie robinson. this man led the tradition of segregation in sports. He played baseball, track, football, and basketball, and in 1939 he became one of the first black players on the UCLA football team.

the civil rights movement and the national soccer league

While jackie robinson championed the civil rights movement, she also helped break down racial barriers. He didn’t continue to play in the NFL, but Jackie desegregated professional baseball for the first time on April 15, 1947.

kareem abdul-jabbar

one of ucla’s most famous basketball players, kareem abdul-jabbar, played under coach john wooden. He was 7’2″ and ended up playing professionally in the NBA. Although he was one of the athletes when he attended UCLA, he appears to have been one of the academics as well.

ncaa champion to political writer

kareem participated in three consecutive ncaa championships and eventually ended up becoming a writer. His books deal with systematic racism and politics, but also with race and religion in sports. It all started at the University of California, Los Angeles.

taylor wang

Chinese and American flags

It may not be a household name, but it made history. In 1985, after serving on the Challenger Spacelab 3 mission, Taylor Wang became the first Chinese-American astronaut. Taylor graduated with three degrees, and if that wasn’t enough, he’s also got plenty of U.S. patents in different scientific subjects.

ralph group

bunch hall is a popular hall where students have been known to get lost. if you didn’t go to ucla then you wouldn’t know this, but you should know who ralph bunche is.

Nobel Peace Prize

best student

ralph bunche was the first black person to win a nobel peace prize. She graduated from UCLA as a valedictorian and eventually earned a Ph.D. in political science from harvard.

was the first black man to earn a Ph.D. in political science in the United States and eventually became the principal secretary of the UN commission on Palestine. that’s when he won the nobel prize.

steve martin

Sometimes the easiest way to get into a new college is to transfer. Steve Martin did exactly that. he transferred in 1967 to major in drama, however, he ended up dropping out without a degree.

grammy award winner

Famous for being in major movies like The Pink Panther and Father of the Bride, Steve Martin is a renowned bruin. what you may not know about steve martin is that he also won grammy awards for best country instrumental performance and best bluegrass album.

mayim bialik

Big Bang Theory

It may be corny, but the big bang theory is a well-known and much-loved program. If you’ve ever seen the show, you’ll remember the actress who plays dr. Amy Farrah Fowler.

double minor and doctorate

Better known as Mayim Bialik, she graduated from UCLA with a Bachelor of Science. in neuroscience. She also double-majored in Hebrew and Jewish studies, then returned to UCLA for a Ph.D. in neuroscience. Taking notes from the show she starred in, Mayim now runs shows for girls to study stem-related topics.

susana wojcicki


You may not know this famous name, but she is the CEO of YouTube and started at UCLA. susan originally studied history and literature at harvard university and eventually received a master of science in economics from ucsc. Eventually, she became a bruin and received an MBA from UCLA.

successful sisters

susan has two sisters, one of them is anne wojcicki, the founder of 23andme. After graduating from UCLA, she ended up in the tech industry. In 1999 Ella Susan Ella helped found Google and became Google’s first Chief Marketing Officer. she now she helps to run youtube as CEO.

francis ford-coppola

The Godfather

The Godfather is possibly one of the most famous films of all time, and Francis Ford-Coppola was the filmmaker and film producer behind it. Before becoming a movie legend, she earned a master’s degree from film school.

ucla film school wins six oscars

francisco eventually won six oscars and many other awards for being a film producer. he is also a winery owner and a highly successful alumnus.

mila kunis

Black Swan

Ukrainian-born Mila Kunis is best known for her role on the hit show “That 70s Show.” She also starred in the TV series “Family Guy”, and has starred in many movies such as “Forgetting Sarah Marshall” and “Black Swan”.

two classes at ucla

Mila didn’t love campus life and was only a dork for a short period of time before she dropped out of school. He has mentioned in interviews that he only took two classes at UCLA before transferring to Loyola Marymount University. although she is not a true student, she still attended school at some point. she is now married to ashton kutcher and has two children

hunting helen

Known for her roles in “The Swiss Robinson Family” and “Crazy About You,” Helen Hunt is now a well-known Emmy Award-winning actress. Like Mila Kunis, she only attended UCLA for a month before dropping out.

randy newman

Arguably one of the most notable alumni based on a song, randy newman wrote the soundtrack for toy story. Randy was almost done with his music degree from the University of California at Los Angeles, with only one semester left. however, this did not affect his future.

Toy Story

grammys, emmys and oscars

Randy eventually won six Grammy Awards, as well as Emmys, Oscars, and more. her voice is well known, and her songs are legendary. He is not in a rock band, but as of 2013, Randy has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He is also considered a Disney legend after working on eight Pixar movies.

james horner

The Titanic soundtrack was easily the best part of the film, and was written by UCLA alumnus James Horner. Specifically, James wrote “My Heart Will Go On” with Will Jennings, which earned him his first Oscar.


beyond “my heart will go on”

he studied for his bachelor’s degree at ucla’s rival usc, eventually earning a doctorate. at ucla. In addition to Titanic, he has also worked on Star Trek movies, the Alien movie, as well as Braveheart, Apollo 13 and Avatar.

russell westbrook

Better known as a famous basketball player, Russell Westbrook played 75 games for the basketball team. This is what eventually led him to become one of UCLA’s most famous alumni.


ucla honors

russell also earned honors and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in sports communication while playing for the university of california los angeles. He was officially drafted in 2008 and started with the Seattle Supersonics.

this team was eventually renamed the oklahoma city thunder, it also represented team usa in the 2012 olympics. in fact, russell westbrook was the second player in history to secure the most triple-doubles in a nba season.

carol burnett

Best known for her own variety show, “The Carol Burnett Show,” Carol started out as someone with nothing and grew into something. In fact, when she first attended UCLA in 1951, an anonymous donor covered her tuition. Although tuition was only $43 at the time, she ultimately aspired to a career. she joined the daily bruin, and this eventually led her into show business.

john williams

having obtained his Ph.D. in economics from the university of california at los angeles, you might not think that john williams would continue to do what he did. As the composer behind Star Wars, Jaws, E.T., Raiders of the Lost Ark, Jurassic Park and Harry Potter.

Academy Awards

49 nominations for academic awards

john has had 49 academy award nominations and is one of the most successful film composers of all time. He has also won five Academy Awards, four Golden Globe Awards, seven British Academy Film Awards, and 22 Grammy Awards. he demonstrates that although he may have an education in one subject, it does not necessarily correspond to what he will do later in life.

Ready to follow in the footsteps of these famous alumni?

If you hope to become a notable alumnus, you need to do a few things first. For example, the most crucial step is to secure a place as a student at UCLA. once you are accepted into the prestigious school, you can secure housing. Tripalink can help you, as a student or young professional, find affordable off-campus housing at UCLA. What are you waiting for? live with like-minded students and choose tripalink today!

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