UCLA Connections are conversations intended to build community and foster resilience as we address and adapt to the changes brought about by COVID-19.


Portrait collage from left to right: Valorie Kondos Field, Damion L. Thomas, Kaiya McCullough

Greater than Gold: The Life and Legacy of Rafer Johnson

Tue Oct 22
11:00 a.m. PDT | 2:00 p.m. EDT
Watch Online

Rafer Johnson’s life was greater than any medal could measure. He passed away in December 2020 at the age of 86 and left behind a legacy that we can all learn from to…

Past Conversations

Portrait collage from left to right: Gilbert Gee, Ursula Heise, Safiya U. Noble, and Chon Noriega

Looking Ahead: Science, Facts and the Public Debate

Thu Jan 14
6:00 p.m. PST | 9:00 p.m. EST
Recording available

As a new U.S. presidential administration prepares for the four years ahead, coping with intersecting challenges including a pandemic, persistent inequality, climate change…

Jennifer Doudna and Andrea Ghez in academic robes.

Nobel Breakthroughs

Wed Dec 16
9 a.m. PST | Noon EST
Recording available

On October 6, 2020, UCLA Professor Andrea Ghez won a Nobel Prize in Physics for her discovery of a supermassive black hole at the center of our ga…

Veteran in a mask and shirt with American flag graphic.

How to serve veterans during the pandemic

Thu Oct 29
1 p.m. PDT | 4 p.m. EDT
Recording available

How can we better serve those who have served? Have disorders like PTSD, traumatic brain injury and others made this time especially difficult for veterans? What strengths …

Person with a mask putting their mail-in ballot in a mailbox

How to increase voter turnout and civic engagement

Wed Oct 14
1 p.m. PDT | 4 p.m. EDT
Recording available

UCLA political scientist Natalie Masuoka and Lizette Mata, Deputy Secretary of State in the office of California Secretary of State Alex Padilla, discuss the importance of …

A masked person helping an elder put on a surgical mask

How we can embrace our aging population during COVID-19 and beyond

Wed Sep 30
1 p.m. PDT | 4 p.m. EDT
Recording available

The current pandemic means members of our vulnerable aging population are more cut off than usual. Many are suffering from food insecurity, loneliness and isolation. Ayesha…

Two adults with a child at home, watching something in front of a computer.

How can parents successfully cope with remote learning?

Wed Sep 16
1 p.m. PDT | 4 p.m. EDT
Recording available

Are you a parent struggling with your pandemic-induced dual role as a caretaker and part-time teacher of your school-age child? Need a pep talk backed by research to make i…

Two people playing violin on the street while wearing masks

How will artists help us get through this?

Wed Sep 02
1 p.m. PDT | 4 p.m. EDT
Recording available

What role will art and artists play in helping communities rebuild during these unprecedented crises? How do artists help frame and reframe the current moment, and how do t…

Woman with mask rolling out recycling bin

How can we practice sustainability during a pandemic?

Wed Aug 19
1 p.m. PDT | 4 p.m. EDT
Recording available

The pandemic has led to a massive increase in the number of single-use masks and gloves, caused stores to ban reusable cups and bags, and increased the use of take-out cont…

A person with a mask riding public transportation

What ethical and moral responsibilities are at play as cities reopen and we create a new normal?

Wed Aug 05
1 p.m. PDT | 4 p.m. EDT
Recording available

Does shaming and blaming work to inspire behavioral change? As officials modify coronavirus restrictions, are some individuals getting a safe free ride at the expense of ot…

A black and white image of a white and Black man staring at each other.

Where do we go from here? Creating an anti-racist climate of support

Wed Jul 29
1 p.m. PDT | 4 p.m. EDT
Recording available

This second UCLA Connections conversation between Tyrone Howard, education professor and director of the UCLA Black Male Institute and the UCLA Pritzker Center for Strength…

Protestor holding up sign that reads 'I can't breathe'

Processing racial trauma

Wed Jun 10
12:30 p.m. PDT | 3:30 p.m. EDT
Recording available

Resurgent White nationalism, the disparate racial impact of COVID-19, the killing of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and other African Americans, are all highli…

Asian-passing person with face mask working at grocery store

How can we combat xenophobia and racism exacerbated by this crisis?

Wed May 27
Noon PDT | 3 p.m. EDT
Recording available

The current global health emergency has exposed the tendencies of some toward racism and xenophobia while also shedding light on health inequities in our society.

Person holding wine glass while looking out the window solemnly

How is the global health crisis impacting alcohol habits and instances of addiction?

Wed May 20
1 p.m. PDT | 4 p.m. EDT
Recording available

With many confined to their homes and added financial and emotional stress, are people drinking alcohol more or less? Are bar closings and fewer social gatherings reducing …

Person holding their head in hand during a virtual conference call

Why does Zoom feel exhausting?

Tue May 19
Noon PDT | 3 p.m. EDT
Recording available

A couple of months ago, communicating via Zoom seemed to be a panacea for many work, school and social needs while observing “safer at home” guidelines. So why has such…

Child celebrating birthday over virtual call

How do we show kindness when we are unable to be close to others?

Thu May 14
1 p.m. PDT | 4 p.m. EDT
Recording available

When life looks dismal, how do we get into the right mindset to be kind? Why does kindness toward others make us feel better? Is kindness contagious? What are some of the s…

Two gloved hands holding

How can marital or partner relationships withstand the pressures of COVID-19?

Tue May 12
1:30 p.m. PDT | 4:30 p.m. EDT
Recording available

The global health crisis has imposed new stress on health workers and their families, and partners working while safer at home. How can couples withstand these new pressure…

Woman working on laptop while child is looking back at her

How has staying at home changed daily stress and coping processes in families?

Thu May 07
1 p.m. PDT | 4 p.m. EDT
Recording available

How does working from home while following COVID-19 “safer at home” guidelines complicate recovery from daily stressors for adults and children? Are there differences b…

Two children on their phones under the blankets

How do parents embrace technology for kids, but prevent it from ruling the household?

Tue May 05
3 p.m. PDT | 6 p.m. EDT
Recording available

With schools closed and remote learning the norm, how many hours of digital technology are acceptable for kids, and how much is too much? Can parents control when kids use …

Two people doing yoga at home

How do we find happiness during difficult times?

Fri May 01
Noon PDT | 3 p.m. EDT
Recording available

What are some proven strategies for bringing more happiness into our lives? How do we go through the challenges of this time and still feel happy?

Person holding pizza

What does it mean to have a healthy relationship to food during times of stress?

Wed Apr 29
1:30 p.m. PDT | 4:30 p.m. EDT
Recording available

Are instances of binge eating or other eating disorders increasing due to the challenges of COVID-19? Do most people feel a loss of control and guilt when it comes to food …