LEADERSHIP THROUGH SERVICE SINCE 1946
Photos by Molly Schaner
Majors: Computational & Systems Biology
Hometown: Bellevue, WA
Bruin Belles has shaped me far more than any other organization on campus during my time at UCLA. It has taught me how to be an effective leader, how to examine stories from every perspective, and how to find community in the face of unprecedented hardship. I will be forever thankful for the incredible, strong women I have had the pleasure of meeting within this organization and the tools they have given me to be successful after I leave UCLA. What makes Belles so special to me is the welcoming, uplifting environment its members create, as well as their undying passion for service and empowerment. I admire each and every member of Belles for their countless amazing qualities, and I am so privileged to serve the community that has shaped me into the leader I am today.
I am honored to serve as the President of Bruin Belles for the 2020-2021 academic year. Bruin Belles is my home, and I am beyond excited to uplift this community further and continue cultivating passion for service and empowerment. This year, I hope to continue to grow our extensive alumni networking opportunities, increase professional development workshops, expand the involvement of General Members on hands-on leadership roles, and promote a close-knit community of Belles. I cannot wait to continue improving upon this incredible organization so Belles can get the most out of their college experience.
Major: Cognitive Science
Minor: Global Health
Hometown: Burlingame, CA
As a frightened first-year, I was searching for a place to belong, a place to make an intimidating and seemingly impersonal campus just a little smaller, and as cheesy as that sounds, I found that and so much more in Bruin Belles. I am constantly inspired by Belles and how they facilitate compassion, connection and communication. It is so rare to find an organization like Belles that genuinely celebrates the highs with you, supports you during the lows, and enables and encourages you to grow, an organization that not only strives to provide opportunities for professional development, but also personal growth. Through my time in BBSA, I’ve discovered the value in surrounding myself with those that uplift me and make every place feel like home.
I’m beyond honored and excited to serve and give back to the BBSA and greater LA community as Co-Philanthropy Director. I hope to not only offer events that Belles are passionate about, but to also help others discover new opportunities for service that are rooted in community engagement and development. Moreover, I want to emphasize community-driven and COVID-relief efforts, and to encourage and empower those around me to discover, develop, and harness their strengths. I not only want to see my fellow Belles grow more into the beautiful, strong, passionate individuals they are, but also want to see the communities around us grow.
Major: Chemical Engineering
Hometown: Templeton, CA
BBSA is a community of strong, kind, and capable women leaders who not only actively make a difference in their communities but also inspire and encourage those around them to do the same. Being surrounded by Belles during my time in BBSA reshaped my perspective on what individuals, including myself, are capable of when love for others is combined with a work ethic and purpose, and what a momentous impact a group of these individual can have when they work together to uplift both themselves and their communities. Being a Belle has given me the opportunity to become a part of this community of women, and I am so thankful for each Belle in my life and memory I share with them.
As philanthropy co-director, I hope to serve my community of Belles by organizing service opportunities through which they can make a difference in the communities around them. This year, I am working to begin a long-term virtual tutoring program with a focus on children in the foster care system, which will give Belles the chance to both help youth in their education and develop a mentoring relationship with younger students. I hope to also facilitate innovative events that will allow Belles to continue to serve vulnerable populations, such as food and blanket drives for those struggling with food and housing insecurity, as well as solo beach or trail cleanups to practice environmental stewardship. I am honored to serve on board this year and look forward to planning events and serving beside my fellow Belles!
Hometown: Roseland, NJ
Joining Bruin Belles has been the highlight of my UCLA experience. BBSA has given me the opportunity to serve both at UCLA and in the greater Los Angeles community while forming lifelong friendships. As an out-of-state student, BBSA has become my home away from home. I am constantly inspired by my fellow Belles and am so grateful to be a part of this amazing organization.
As Secretary, my goal is to support Belles as they grow professionally and personally. One of my favorite things about being a Belle is how connected this organization helps me feel to the communities around me. I hope that by expanding BBSA’s virtual resources, I can help Belles navigate the school year more easily while offering them more opportunities to make the most of their time at UCLA. I am honored to be serving on BBSA’s executive board this year and cannot wait to see future Belles thrive.
Public Relations Director
Major: Political Science
Minor: European Studies
Hometown: Wildomar, CA
Joining Bruin Belles has given me a sense of purpose on campus. Serving the UCLA campus and the greater Los Angeles area has not only made my college experience extremely fulfilling, but has also brought me to the most inspiring women that I am privileged to call my fellow Belles.
As Public Relations Director, one of my goals is to facilitate lasting bonds between Belles and Belle Alumni. As a senior, I am motivated to start new traditions for greater alumni involvement that I can participate in next year as a Belle Alumna. I hope that our social media platforms serve as a reflection of BBSA's commitment to service and standard of professionalism. I am not only grateful, but also proud to be a member of an organization with such a longstanding tradition of leadership through service.
Kristal Orta Martinez
Minor: Disability Studies
Hometown: Los Angeles , CA
I was pleasantly surprised to find out that Bruin Belles was not an acapella group when a friend of mine had asked me to apply with her our second year at UCLA. It was a spontaneous decision on my part to apply because I was still a shy and insecure underclassman trying to find my place at UCLA. I knew I wanted to be a part of something at the heart of UCLA but also the greater Los Angeles community— being a native Angeleno myself. When I learned that BBSA beautifully intertwined service, women’s leadership, and a family aspect, I knew that it would not only help me find a home within UCLA but encompass my passion for philanthropy and my developing feminist perspective. Through BBSA I have found my voice, grown professionally and socially, and found some of the most amazing friends at UCLA.
I am excited to serve as Fundraising Director for the 2020-2021 school year and am looking forward to the strategies that will be utilized in order to make BBSA more affordable to our Bruin Belles. Considering the state of the pandemic, I am going to try everything possible to listen to our Belles and meet them where they are regarding finances and accessibility. I am very thankful to BBSA for helping me grow professionally and am excited to help other Belles, new and current, grow with the organization and not allow finances to be an obstacle. I am so proud to be a member of this organization and I will continue to support this community of beautiful and empowering women!
Hometown: Palos Verdes, CA
Over the last two years, I’ve discovered that what makes BBSA so unique is the diversity of the Belles around me. Many, if not all, are pursuing more than one passion, and everyone is always excited to mentor and share what they learned with each other. BBSA has given me the privilege of meeting so many amazing, self-empowered women who have been an inspiration to me. It was through the people I met here that I learned to be a more confident leader, to bravely pursue my passions, and to humbly learn from other dedicated women.
As the Social Director, I hope to create fun and integrating social events for the organization I care most about. Through the social events, I hope to provide Belles with the opportunity to bond with other Belles and to foster lifelong relationships. Belles has been a home away from home for me and my goal is to continue to provide a welcoming and supportive environment.
Women’s Leadership Director
Minors: Art History
Hometown: Chennai, India
BBSA has been instrumental in molding not only my UCLA experience but also my individual growth. The community service, campus culture, social, and womxn's leadership events that I've had the privilege of attending have given me an insight into the multiple spheres that exist in the world around us, while reminding me of the power we hold as community changemakers. Moreover, the unwavering sense of support I've felt and the knowledge I've gained from this group of womxn have truly instilled a deeper sense of community in me, and I am so grateful for everything BBSA has given me in the past two years: the experiences, the friendships, and the memories.
I'm extremely humbled to have the opportunity to serve as the Womxn's Leadership Director this year. Within the fast-paced environment around us in addition to the inevitable roadblocks we face, it's so important to take some time out of our lives to reflect on ourselves: our goals, feelings, and relationships. Through the WL office, I hope to offer events and create a space that enables each member to have the opportunity to take a step back and evaluate themselves with the support of so many incredible womxn. My office will operate on three main pillars: personal growth including a focus on self-care and mental health, professional development through guidance, and social awareness with emphasis on the intersections that exist between race, gender, income-level, etc. This year, I hope to also make the office extremely collaborative since there is so much to learn from each other's experiences! I look forward to another incredible year at BBSA filled with meaningful growth and learning.
Campus Culture Director
Hometown: Pasadena, CA
At the beginning of my second year at UCLA, I still had yet to find my place on campus. I was searching for an organization where I could use my time for good and hopefully meet some new friends along the way. I stumbled upon Bruin Belles, and it somehow had everything I was looking for - a dedication to serving the community around us, a focus on women's leadership, opportunity for professional growth, and a network of kind and passionate women. Now beginning my third year as a Bruin Belle, I could not imagine my UCLA experience without this group of dynamic women. Each member brings something unique to the table, and they have each helped to give me a new perspective on life and the world around me.
As this year's Campus Culture director, I am so excited to explore the UCLA campus and community through volunteering. The events in this office uniquely combine Belles' passion for service with our UCLA pride. Through Campus Culture events, Belles have special opportunities available, such as volunteering to work with sports media in the Rose Bowl Press Box, decorating the locker rooms of our world-renowned Division I sports teams, and helping to plan and execute one of our largest events of the year, P.L.A.Y. Day. My hope for this year is to highlight the wonderful athletics, culture, and education programs that makes UCLA special, and to help Belles discover new aspects of this broad and diverse campus as we serve our local community.