UCLA was founded in 1919, as the "southern branch of the University of California". However, its beginnings date from almost thirty years earlier in the March of 1881, when the State Assembly of California, approved the establishment of a second State Normal School(*). Funding for the site was achieved by contributions from over 200 "enthusiastic citizens". On August 29, 1882, it opened its doors to its first students.

Having moved to Vermont Avenue in 1914, its Director Ernest Carroll Moore moved in 1917, that the school ought to become the first branch of the University of California, then based at Berkeley. The subsequent legislation of May 23, 1919, transformed UCLA from a teacher's college two a true institution of learning, offering two-year courses of intruction in Law and the Sciences.

UCLA's first class of 300 students graduated in 1925, and the then site's capacity was gradually being exhausted. Eventually the University moved to its new home at Westwood, and began to offer Master's Degrees in 1933, and three years later, in 1936, Doctorates.

Today the University, only 80 years old, occupies some 163 buildings over some 4198 acres, and has a student body of more than 36,500 students. The current Chancellor is Albert Carnesale, who assumed his post on July 1, 1997.

(*) The first being in San José -- some 300 miles to the north.

Grateful acknowledgment is given to UCLA,