Top UCLA news stories of 2019
UCLA began observing its 100th birthday this year and delivered new advances in research, health care, the arts, community service and teaching. These are some of the top stories from UCLA Newsroom in 2019 — those which made news and engaged the community of Bruins and beyond.
UCLA turns 100
In just 100 years, UCLA has grown into a respected center of learning, research and health care — and a community pillar with transformational impact in California, the nation and the world.
Since opening a decade ago, the Robert F. Kennedy UCLA Community School has greatly increased the college-going rate in largely immigrant Los Angeles neighborhoods.
UCLA from overhead in the 1930s.
Women's athletics have changed campus culture and the lives of thousands of student-athletes — and created new role models.
UCLA's centennial celebration launched with a light-and-sound show projected on Royce Hall.
John McNeil retired before most current freshmen were born, but the professor emeritus of education still comes to campus every day.
Science and technology
Ning Wang and professor Mona Jarrahi work on a terahertz detector.
A detailed analysis of a star's orbit near a supermassive black hole gives a look into how gravity behaves.
UCLA-developed sensors work at room temperature, unlike current technology that needs extreme cold.
A new method used to study planets' geochemistry implies that Earth is not unique.
Researchers have designed a nanogenerator that can work in remote areas on its own power — and acts as a weather station.
Perovskite-based cells made with the chemical found in coffee maintained their power conversion efficiency for several weeks longer than those without it.
Health and behavior
Jason Esterhuizen is able to follow the sidewalk thanks to an experimental brain implant.
UCLA researchers implanted a wireless device that enables people without sight to detect motion and distinguish light and dark.
The findings could lead to new methods to get the body's repair enzyme to work better.
The invention relies in part on another UCLA invention: photonic time stretch.
Professor found that the left rostrolateral prefrontal cortex is important in accessing knowledge that was formed in the past and making decisions about it.
The findings stress the importance of learning how existing drugs work to repurpose them for potential use in treating other diseases.
Students and campus
Katelyn Ohashi performing her gymnastics routine.
Katelyn Ohashi's gymnastics routine went viral on the internet.
Twin sisters Helen and Rachel Lee have dedicated themselves to repeal of the sales tax on feminine hygiene products.
Haya Kaliounji founded the non-profit, Rise Again, which provides people wounded in the conflict in her home country with free prosthetic limbs.
Later in the year, the softball team added UCLA's 118th national championship.
College Signing Day was hosted by UC and Reach Higher, the college access and success initiative launched by the former first lady.
Environment and climate
Arctic sea ice.
UCLA study finds the ominous change could happen earlier than previously thought.
Researchers estimate that about 25,000 births per year were affected over two decades.
Research teams closely monitor the Santa Monica Mountains to examine impacts throughout the food chain.
Why there were so many painted lady butterflies in Southern California this year.
Nation, world and society
Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images for UCLA
Terry George, Kim Kardashian West, Khloe Kardashian and Dr. Eric Esrailian.
The interdisciplinary institute, the first initiative of its size and scope, was created with a gift from the estate of Kirk Kerkorian.
The Rapanui people most likely believed the ancient monoliths helped food to grow on the Polynesian island.
As the nation heads into another contentious presidential campaign, UCLA will study what drives voters' choices in 2020.
The study's authors urge educators and policymakers to address poverty, health and educational practices that undermine achievement and opportunity.
Arts and culture
Director Patty Jenkins and actor Gal Gadot on the set of "Wonder Woman."
"We feel confident our partners in Hollywood today see the value of diversity in ways that they did not before," said Darnell Hunt, dean of the UCLA College Division of Social Sciences.
UCLA Arts program brings the public together with students and 30 leading minds from across campus to engage in conversations around 10 essential topics.
The genre-defying artist was awarded the campus’s highest honor. This year's medal winners.
The 48,000 square foot campus, designed with sustainable systems and materials, creates a true artist's neighborhood.
Community and service
UniCamp 2019 counselors
Since 1934, student counselors at the Bruin-led camp have learned that volunteering with low-income kids is a life-altering experience.
For 50 years, UCLA faculty and students have provided affordable oral health care for tens of thousands in Venice and beyond.
Q&A with professor Jonathan Stewart about what the UCLA team he organized learned from the swarm of Ridgecrest quakes.
Joselin Palma became a member of the Bruin gymnastics team for a day.
Mike Yarish/©2019 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.
Actor and UCLA alumna Mayim Bialik takes a selfie with senior Kemeka Corry on the set of "The Big Bang Theory."
The couple have now given more than $188 million to UCLA and more than $478 million overall to the University of California.
The reinvestment brings his total giving to UCLA to more than $450 million.
The bequest by Sidney Roberts and Clara Szego Roberts reflects the couple's backgrounds — both benefited from college scholarships — and their passion for science and the arts.
Undergraduates who received scholarships to pursue science, technology, engineering or math degrees visited the cast and crew on set.
Faculty and staff
John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
Kelly Lytle Hernandez, professor and director of the UCLA Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies.
The prominent cancer researcher was honored for his invention of the breast cancer drug Herceptin.
The renowned scholar of race, mass incarceration and immigration said she will continue to expand her social justice work.
Carter named executive vice chancellor and provost">Emily A. Carter named executive vice chancellor and provost
Carter took over as the chief academic officer of UCLA.
Q&A with Melissa Reider-Demer, who was honored by a national organization that promotes clinical safety, patient experience and workforce engagement.