I came to UCLA as an East Coaster ready for sunshine and eager to do just one thing on campus: work for the Daily Bruin.
I remember interviewing to be a photo intern fall quarter of my freshman year and the immense joy I felt when I made the cut. Copies of the paper that featured my first front-page photo are still tucked neatly on my bookshelf.
Every moment on campus that I wasn’t in class — and some moments when I was supposed to be in class — was spent in Kerckhoff 118. For me and so many others, the Daily Bruin was my college experience. It defined my time at UCLA in more ways than my major ever did. (I even got over the lack of windows in the newsroom separating me from the sunshine that had drawn me to L.A. originally!)
It’s been five years since I graduated and being editor-in-chief of the Daily Bruin is still the most challenging job I’ve ever had. Running a newsroom set me up for an incredible amount of success when I entered the professional world after graduation, though I’d argue The Bruin is pretty darn professional.
Many of the lessons I learned in Kerckhoff, especially those I learned the hard way, have helped me on my journey in sports media — presently as the director of editorial production at Action Network. Deadlines became second nature and the chaos of running a daily paper alongside the quarter system have made sprinting through each NFL season feel like a breeze. The people I bonded with over hasty Ackerman lunches and burnt Kerckhoff Coffeehouse lattes have stayed my family, including my husband.
I owe a lot to the Daily Bruin and it’s been my pleasure to give back through the alumni coaching program alongside Claire Fahy ’17 and Jeong Park ’17 this year. Student journalism is vital and we as alumni know better than most what it takes to make the paper happen. If you’d like to inquire about coaching, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and read more about the program below.
— Kenzie Possee ’18
On behalf of the Daily Bruin Alumni Network Board
Network of the Year
We are still basking in the glow of being honored by the UCLA Alumni Association as the 2023 Network of the Year. We celebrated at an awards dinner on Saturday, May 13, filling several tables with alumni and friends of the network. Lawrence Ma ’94, our tireless board president, gave a speech on our behalf about the importance of the free press and on giving back to current UCLA students. “It’s time for UCLA to do its part for the future of the free press,” Lawrence told the crowd. “It’s time to invest in student media, by giving the students the advising and training that they need, the proper facilities to practice the craft, and responsible and learned stewardship to navigate these rough seas.”
As the network turns five years old, it is humbling to be recognized alongside some of the other truly impressive alumni showcased at the dinner.
Watch Lawrence, Jillian Beck ’14 and Robina Ricciatello ’84 in this gorgeously shot video as they talk about the work the network has done since its founding.
Mingle in Los Angeles
Calling all Los Angeles Bruins – we’re having a happy hour. Join Sara Randazzo ’08, Jillian Beck and other alumni from across the decades on Wednesday, June 28, at 6:30 p.m. at Angel City Brewery in the arts district. Email Sara at email@example.com if you know you can join or have any questions.
Love at the Bruin
Tanner Walters ’18 and Nate Nickolai ’19 don’t remember their first conversation. Nate thinks it had something to do with squirrels. But both vividly remember the summer before the 2016-2017 school year, when they ended up crashing in the same Westwood apartment during senior editor training. Tanner was the incoming editor in chief of The Bruin, and was struck by the energy and fun in Nate, who was about to start as an assistant arts and entertainment editor. A casual flirtation began that summer and extended into the fall, when the two grew closer during “dining hall dates” – moments shared over Feast’s finest, thanks to Nate’s generous dining hall swipe plan.
“I was being very cautious,” Tanner recalls, since he oversaw Nate’s work at the paper. By the holidays, the two were officially dating, though the broader newsroom didn’t find out until that spring’s -29- awards, when they were named the cutest Daily Bruin couple.
The two stayed together as Tanner graduated in 2018 and began working for the NFL, and Nate finished at UCLA in 2019 and took a job with People magazine. When Tanner accepted a new job with Stanford University, they moved with their cat to the Bay Area, where they now love exploring the area’s restaurants and bars, going to baseball games and watching favorite TV shows like “Survivor.”
The Daily Bruin is never too far from their minds, as they’re both active in the alumni network and have friends from campus days. And memories of Daily Bruin critiques are still triggered by eating Lay’s Limon potato chips, which Tanner always brought to share. “Whenever I eat them, I think of Tanner,” Nate said.
Did you meet your partner at The Bruin or know someone who did? If so please email Sara Randazzo at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’d like to make this a regular feature.
Meet the Editor
My name's Isabelle Friedman, and I'll be the 2023-2024 Daily Bruin Editor in Chief. This past year, I've served as the copy chief and before that as a slot editor, and I've also written for the sports desk on the gymnastics and women's soccer beats.
I'm so excited for the future of the Daily Bruin and for the leadership team we've built for the next year. Still coming out of the pandemic, we're hoping to increase daily digital production and generally improve our efficiency as we work to rebuild our paper's institutional knowledge and resources available for staffers. As we continue to fully in-person production, I'm hoping to bring staffers back into the office as much as possible and encourage more cross-section collaborations and community building among staffers. We're also committed to continuing the organization's efforts to improve diversity both in terms of our staff and our coverage.
This has been a great year working with DBAN, and the staff has been so thankful for the network's support, from the scholarship program to the growing mentorship opportunities and everything else you all do for us. I'm excited to continue such strong relationships in the future and looking forward to meeting more of you soon!
Reunion 2023 – Save the Date
We’re working hard to put together this year’s reunion, to be held at UCLA on Saturday, Oct. 14. Stay tuned for opportunities to nominate the Alumnus of the Year and information on how to buy tickets.
Help Us Coach
During the 2022-23 school year, DBAN launched the alumni coaching program across several Daily Bruin sections. Alumni coaches have been sharing their experience — both from their time at The Bruin and as working professionals — with students through monthly meetings and weekly critiques fit for each section.
Coaching programs for arts, sports, news, design, copy and multimedia sections have been successfully underway. We are currently recruiting across sections as we plan for next year. If you're interested in mentoring any section at The Bruin, please reach out to Kenzie Possee (email@example.com), Claire Fahy (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Jeong Park (email@example.com).
Courtney Kan and Matea Gold
Matea Gold ’96 has been named a managing editor of The Washington Post. When she steps into the role in September she’ll oversee several departments, including the national and metro staff. She’s currently the paper’s national editor.