The Big Bang Theory Scholars bonded with cast members cast, crew, producers and writers on-set of the hit TV sitcom on September 29, 2016.
Mia Shannon Reyes, majoring in aerospace engineering; Mateen Ul Hassan, a physics major; Steven La, a math major; Amy Shao, a neuroscience major; and Jonathan Shi Jr., majoring in pre-microbiology, immunology and molecular genetics, all freshmen students at UCLA are the latest recipients of The Big Bang Theory Scholarship Endowment.
Diehard The Big Bang Theory Fan
During an interview with UCLA Newsroom, Reyes said that she really wanted to visit the show. “I still watch the show, and that was all I watched in middle school. In middle school, I still wanted to be a writer, and the show was one of the things that inspired me to go into engineering,” she added.
The same source added that she bought a ticket to visit the show as a live audience a month ago, as a gesture of gratitude to the show. However, the studio filled up before she could get in. She brought her ticket to the set to show off.
Two days before committing to UCLA, she came to a point where she had had to choose a more affordable alternative – that is until she heard from the UCLA The Big Bang Theory Scholarship.
Reyes is majoring in aerospace engineering, the same field as that of Howard Wolowitz.
La, on the other hand, said the show was a big influence on him to pursue Physics.
He said one of his middle school teachers was a fan of the show. “He would show it to us during breaks,” he added.
The Mathematics major said once he started watching the show, he realized that, “it’s okay to be a nerd.”
On the Set of The Big Bang Theory
The five recipients of the scholarship grant recalled their reactions when they heard about the show members wanting to meet them.
Hassan thought it was an e-mail phishing scam, while La deferred to his friends to see if they thought the invitation was real.
The five got a chance to take a group photo with the cast and crew of the show. Mayim Bialik, who plays Amy Farrah Fowler, also took a selfie with them.
The scholars also explored the Warner Bros. backlot together and bought t-shirts at the souvenir shop before heading to the rehearsal and the reception.
Balik (who is also a Neuroscientist and a UCLA alumnus) also led the students in a rousing eight-clap. (Watch the video below.)
The endowment is now in its second year. The scholars are chosen based on their UC applications for their achievement in Science, Technology, and Mathematics.
According to a report, each student will receive $10,000 per academic year. These were donated by the seven principal actors of the series.
The endowment was first awarded in 2015 to twenty students from UCLA. It is awarded to students based on their involvement in STEM and financial need.