Native Bruin: Past, Present, & Future – Makela Yepez (Pomo)

🔷Bruin Highlight: Past, Present & Future 🔷
🔸This April 2024 we are highlighting Native Bruin, Makela Yepez (Pomo), class of 2021 🔸
Makela Yepez, a member of the Hopland Band of Pomo Indians located in rural Northern California, aspired of becoming an artist in Los Angeles from a young age. Upon gaining acceptance to the UCLA School of Theater, Film, and Television, Makela embarked on his studies in directing and acting. In 2021, while still an undergraduate student, he established his photography business and has since collaborated with actors and photographed at various renowned venues in Los Angeles, including the Viper Room and the Wiltern. His photography has been showcased in the Los Angeles Times, and he currently serves as the production photographer for the UCLA Theater Department. Makela remains dedicated to his acting pursuits and has made appearances in Netflix’s “Manifest” series, with an upcoming role in a Marvel project on the horizon.
“UCLA was a place for me to grow and discover myself as an artist. With so many opportunities and brilliant minds around me, I was able to find my path and develop my skills in storytelling and creating art. UCLA taught me to believe in myself and gave me the tools I needed to bring what was in my mind on stage, on paper or on camera. I learned that it wasn’t one thing that made me an artist but it was many things that informed the art I made. From Chicano Studies to Directing for Stage, my mind was cracked wide open for the world to enter and for my art to pour out.”