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BruinHub, Basic Needs Center provides resources for transfers, commuters

The Strathmore Building is pictured. At the beginning of this quarter, The Bruin Commuter Hub opened a new center with consistent hours in the building. (Megan Cai/Daily Bruin senior staff)

By Sofia Martins

Jan. 30, 2024 4:47 p.m.

Correction: The original version of this article incorrectly referred to the BruinHub as the Bruin Commuter Hub.

This post was updated Jan. 31 at 7:05 p.m. 

The BruinHub and UCLA Basic Needs Center hosted an event to highlight resources for transfer and commuter students Thursday.

The “Strathmore Spotlight” event provided a tour of both facilities and offered free lunch to UCLA students. The BruinHub opened a new unit in the Strathmore Building, which began to function with consistent hours at the beginning of this quarter to allow students to relax and study between classes.

Located at Strathmore 117 and 106, respectively, the BruinHub and the Basic Needs Center provide a holistic support system for all UCLA students, focusing on the transfer and commuter population, said Itzel Guerrero, the crisis coordinator for the Economic Crisis Response Team.

Dominique Peñate, the program coordinator of the Commuter Support & Programs office, said spaces like the BruinHub are essential for building community among commuter students, though the space is open to all UCLA students.

Peñate added that resources for commuter students are important to help foster a sense of community.

“Commuter students are physically and figuratively disconnected from campus, so we try to create programs that bring other campus partners and other academic resources so that the commuter student population … can build community amongst each other,” Peñate said. 

The BruinHub’s pods are helpful to those who can’t go home easily during the day, said Karina Tejeda, a third-year political science transfer student who commutes from Ventura twice a week. She added she had to use on-campus Wi-Fi to watch a movie for class, and the BruinHub provided a comfortable space for her to do so.

“I was able to lie down in the layer pod and watch the movie right before class,” Tejeda said.

According to its website, The UCLA Basic Needs Center at Strathmore houses the Economic Crisis Response Team – which helps students facing immediate financial crises – and the Financial Wellness Program, which provides financial education resources that encourage financial literacy.

The center also provides snacks, toiletries and other essentials students might need. Šerifa Dela Cruz, the chair of the Economic Crisis Response Team, said one of the center’s purposes is to help students meet their basic needs, allowing them to focus on their academic journey.

Megan Nakagawa, a third-year communication student who works at the Transfer Student Center, said it would be great to publicize the resources at the Strathmore Building further to make more students aware of what is available to them.

Bryce Trevino, a third-year political science student who also works at the Transfer Student Center, said hosting events like the Strathmore Spotlight are especially important for transfer students like him because transfers spend less time at UCLA and may not discover the resources the university offers right away.

Charlene Cubangbang, a third-year political science student and student intake assistant at the BruinHub and the Basic Needs Center, added that having all the resources in one place ensures students can easily access them.

“Having a space for people to come together, hang out and find other people to connect with is really nice,” Cubangbang said. 

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Sofia Martins
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