UCI Alumni: Where Are They Now?
Here’s a fun fact about me: I’m weirdly obsessed with finding out where my favorite celebrities went to college. I’m also really interested in finding out what they majored in, what they minored in, and what extracurriculars they did. Why? I don’t really know either, to be honest!
It’s definitely something that started when I was an undergraduate. I think it’s because of how formative college was for me, and how curious I was about how I would end up in like, 10 years. For me, knowing and admiring UCI alumni is a cool way for me to feel connected with the school. During my lowest of lows (I think particularly of most finals weeks), looking towards UCI alumni and their achievements gave me a lot of hope about what I could accomplish as well.
One of the alumni that I respect the most is Chris Kelly. Chris is a comedy writer; he was one of the head writers during Saturday Night Live’s 42nd season, a writer and producer on the hilarious Broad City, and a writer/director for the 2016 movie Other People, which is based on his own experiences coping with his mother’s cancer (it’s on Netflix and I totally recommend watching it, I cried a lot).
Another anteater alumni I really admire is comedian and actress Crista Flanagan. I grew up watching Crista on MADtv, along with other comedy big names like Bobby Lee, Jordan Peele, Keegan-Michael Key, and Ike Barinholtz. I remember absolutely loving Crista’s impressions and characters. Crista also has a small role in the critically acclaimed television series, Mad Men.
Finally, one of the most inspiring anteater alumna that I know of is Erin Gruwell. Erin is an American teacher who worked alongside her high school students to publish The Freedom Writers Diary, which chronicled Gruwell and her Long Beach high school students’ experiences. The book was later made into a movie in 2007.
Sometimes, in frustrating times, I would think about some of these alumni and think about how they walked the same roads as I did, hung around the same park that I did, and might have even struggled similarly to me. Now that I recently graduated as well, I’m excited to see what my peers can and will achieve or accomplish in the near future.