Cal Poly Report — Nov. 25, 2020 


Cal Poly Ranks Second Nationally in Study Abroad Survey

Cal Poly students are increasingly opting to study abroad, according to the Institute of International Education’s annual statistical survey of U.S. campuses for the 2018-19 academic year. “Cal Poly has made top rankings — for the second year in a row — for master’s institutions for the total number of students we sent abroad in 2018-19 and for the number of students sent on mid-length study abroad programs that year,” said Cari Vanderkar, senior international officer and assistant vice provost for international programs. “While nationally about one in 10 U.S. undergraduates study abroad by the time of graduation, at Cal Poly about one in four undergraduate students studied abroad by the time of graduation in 2018-19.” The Institute of International Education is the leading not-for-profit educational and cultural exchange organization in the U.S. Open Doors surveys about 2,000 U.S. universities and colleges with study abroad programs. Since 2000, Cal Poly has ranked as a top sender in the nation among master’s level universities for internationally bound students. Read the news release.

Holiday Sales Offer Dazzling Array of Student-Made Products

Red and white poinsettiasWhile this year’s holiday shopping season may look different than any other, Cal Poly’s annual selection of student-made products continue to bring joy to customers looking to unwrap the Learn by Doing spirit. Students, faculty and staff have been working hard for months to prepare inventory, fill orders and host sales featuring artisan cheeses, meats, chocolates, poinsettias and wine. The experience of connecting with the community in such creative ways has been eye-opening for many students. “Every day we have customers thank us for going out and finding a way to still cater to our community during this challenging time,” said Tori Pedersen, an animal science student who co-manages the Cal Poly Meats weekly drive-thru sales. “Hearing how much our community appreciates and supports us makes it even more worth it.” Read the full article and find out how to purchase Cal Poly products at Cal Poly News

Student Success

Cal Poly Holiday Cheese Boxes Feature Student-Made Products

Three students with holiday cheese.The Cal Poly Creamery has new award-winning cheeses and traditional favorites, available in a variety of gift box arrangements. The sale runs through Dec. 11, with shipping available throughout the U.S. and select dates available for pick-up at the Cal Poly Creamery. Gift boxes from the creamery are a safe and convenient way to share Mustang pride this holiday season. The creamery cares about our community and is giving back this holiday season. For every 100 gift boxes sold, a cheese box will be donated to the Cal Poly Food Pantry to support students impacted by food insecurity.  A special cheese box is also available for purchase as a direct donation to students in need. Click here to order your cheese selections in time for holiday delivery. Thank you for supporting students and Cal Poly's Learn by Doing tradition.

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Faculty & Staff

Submit a Dear Mustang Grad Letter to the Class of 2020

Dear Mustang GradFaculty and staff can showcase how Cal Poly proud they are of fall 2020 graduates by writing a "Dear Mustang Grad" letter. This campaign offers a unique way for faculty and staff to congratulate graduates, highlight their accomplishments, give thanks, share memories and offer words of wisdom. Through these letters, the Commencement Office hopes to surprise the Class of 2020 with personal notes from the people who supported them throughout their Cal Poly journey. For optimal impact, keep this letter a secret. Once submitted, the Commencement Office will begin preparations to deliver them to graduates on your behalf. The deadline to submit Dear Mustang Grad letters is Nov. 29. Click on the following link to submit a letter: Need a little inspiration? Check out the following video of graduates reading their Dear Mustang Grad letters for the first time:


It takes 1 million years to decompose or 1 minute to recycle.Winner of Campus Recycling Marketing Survey Announced

Based on the results of a recent Facilities survey, a new recycling campaign, “Time Well Spent,” will be launched on campus during winter and spring 2021. The marketing campaign will be funded by the CalRecycle CRV (California Redemption Value) grant awarded to Cal Poly this year. More than 250 people responded to the Beverage Container Recycling Marketing survey, and the “Time Well Spent” message emerged as the most relevant and overall favorite among students, faculty and staff. Facilities also received hundreds of comments on how to further improve recycling efforts on campus. Thank you to all who participated and shared the survey to pick the next recycling campaign for campus.

V: Drive Migration to SharePoint Extended

 Drive with arrow pointing to SharePointCal Poly’s department file shares (also known as the V: drive) are being migrated to SharePoint in the Microsoft 365 cloud. The project was originally expected to be completed at the end of the year, but it has been extended into early next year to allow for some final adjustments. Just like the U: drive, which was migrated to OneDrive in September, the V: drive is being discontinued in favor of a more accessible and robust cloud storage solution. SharePoint offers seamless collaboration on projects and department files, and integrates with other Microsoft apps. It’s also easy to access from anywhere, without a VPN connection. Each department will migrate its files from the V: drive to SharePoint at its own pace, at the direction of the IT staff in that area. The IT staff are coordinating with Information Technology Services (ITS) to complete the transition in the next few months. Anyone with questions about the file share migration project should contact the IT staff in their department.

Illustration of a womanWatch this month’s information security video from NINJIO to learn about “homephishing,” the act of spear phishing that targets individuals who are working from home. Malicious actors use spear phishing, the act of sending a targeted email with personal information, in hopes that the perceived familiarity will compel the recipient to click on a malicious link or file. All NINJIO training videos are available on the Cal Poly Learning Hub under the Staff and Faculty Training tab on the My Cal Poly Portal.

Tilde Websites Will Be Decommissioned in December

Next month, ITS will decommission the PolyLog UNIX server that hosts “Tilde” websites ( The server can no longer be maintained due to its age, and many of the websites hosted there do not meet accessibility standards. Owners of Tilde websites were notified over the summer and have been reminded throughout fall quarter to download their content, should they want to keep an offline archived copy. After the Tilde websites have been decommissioned, the content from the sites will be available for viewing in the University Web Archive. Questions? Contact the ITS Service Desk at or ext. 6-7000.

Issue with macOS Big Sur Release

Illustration for Big Sur operating systemApple released macOS Big Sur on Nov. 12, and unfortunately, the current versions of Global Protect virtual private network (VPN) and Sophos antivirus software do not function properly on Mac computers running the Big Sur operating system. At this time, Information Technology Services (ITS) recommends that members of the Cal Poly community who use GlobalProtect VPN and/or Sophos on a Mac do not download macOS Big Sur until both GlobalProtect and Sophos come out with an upgrade that resolves the issue. No action is required by faculty and staff who are using a state-managed computer. ITS is working with both GlobalProtect and Sophos on this issue, and when they release new versions, it will be made available and updates to the campus will be made as quickly as possible. Questions? Contact the ITS Service Desk at or ext. 6-7000.

Staff and Faculty Winter Parking Update

Winter parking permits will be available for purchase online beginning Monday, Dec. 21, and will be valid starting Monday, Jan. 4, 2021. Fall quarter parking permits will expire Friday, Dec. 4. Employees can purchase permits online and update their vehicle information using their parking account. Parking permits are required for parking on campus during the winter academic break. Visit Transportation and Parking Services staff page for more information on staff parking.

Save the Date: Register for Facilities Management and Development Virtual Fall Summit 2020 

Facilities Management and Development will host a series of virtual Zoom sessions this year in lieu of the annual Fall Summit and Open House. From Dec. 7-9, the campus community is invited to attend sessions on a variety of interesting and informative Facilities-related topics. This year’s session topics include sustainability, COVID-19 custodial support, campus planning, information security, service request processes and more. Visit the FMD Virtual Fall Summit webpage at to view the detailed session list and the session schedule and to register. Don’t miss this opportunity to connect with your colleagues in FMD and learn more about the range of services and support they provide. Questions? Contact the Facilities Management and Development Help Center at or call ext. 6-5555.

Research, Economic Development and Graduate Education Invites Faculty to Join Research Listserv

Faculty members are invited to join Research, Economic Development and Graduate Education's (R-EDGE) research listserv to receive communication about activities or funding opportunities related to research. To join,  send an email with subject line "sub researchlistserv" to For more information about the Research, Economic Development and Graduate Education division, visit

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Beth Gallagher About a month into her Cal Poly tenure, Beth Gallagher was working late, as was often the case. On this particular night, a custodian dropped by and asked if she could share a concern. She proceeded to share her disappointment that due to cuts she would not be able to carry out her daily tasks to her high standards — she wouldn’t have the time to empty bins every night and ensure that the floor was cleaned to her liking. Gallagher remembers this moment as a gift. This show of dedication set the tone for her next 10 years on campus. Throughout her time as associate vice president, Human Resources, Gallagher has been fortunate to oversee a wide variety of functions in a department that touches everyone at the university. Gallagher is set to retire on Dec. 30. She will miss all the people that she has met and worked with, especially her team in HR, and is grateful for the opportunity to work at Cal Poly and be part of the CSU system. She truly believes that education changes lives and says it has been an extraordinary way to make a living.

Melissa BullaroMelissa Bullaro transferred to Cal Poly in 1984 from the University of Nevada, Reno to study business marketing, and now, 36 years later, she’s ready for a new adventure. Bullaro will retire from her position as director of Risk Management and Administrative Services on Dec. 30. A self-proclaimed “Army Brat,” Bullaro was born in Texas, lived in Germany, did some growing up in Korea and generally spent much of her life experiencing new places. Yet, she has called San Luis Obispo home since '84. Bullaro started her first full-time job at the Cal Poly Corporation after graduating with her bachelor's degree. She spent 22 years with the corporation, taking advantage of the Educational Fee Reimbursement program to get her MBA before she moved over to stateside to head up Risk Management. During her time, she’s helped a lot of students with projects and met lots of great people throughout campus who she’s going to miss. Now, she’s ready to get back into photography, spend more time on her stand-up paddleboard, and do some racing with her Dragon Boat team, with whom she hopes to compete in New Zealand in 2022.


Nick SweeneyAfter 35 years as a network analyst and instructor in Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering, Nick Sweeney (Electrical Engineering; M.S., Engineering, '91) will retire in December. Sweeney acted largely behind the scenes to trouble-shoot, research and innovate, keeping an extensive web of software and hardware configurations humming along successfully. He worked nights, mornings and weekends and is the reason many of us simply walked into our offices to find our computer systems unknowingly restored. Sweeney helped Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering (IME) develop outstanding computing labs and create excellent hands-on lab experiences in industrial automation. He was no small part of what helped IME grow to become a top department of its type in the nation. Sweeney waged battle and held dominion through untold technology changes, administrative re-organizations and even one or two personal conflicts. Yet he will be remembered at Cal Poly by a great many colleagues and friends who held his work in the highest regard.

Steve PolviOn Dec. 30, Steve Polvi will retire from his role as manager of architectural trades in Facilities Operations. A Cal Poly alumnus, Polvi has led the union trade shops for the past six years, managing roughly 30 employees from the electrical, paint, carpenter and locksmith shops — a team that he describes as excellent. Prior to his return to campus, he spent 25 years in engineering and construction management, where he worked on projects both large and small, including six years managing the expansions of McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas and a plant on an island off the coast of Australia. Now he plans to project manage his own home improvements and spend more time traveling. He said he will miss the people he has worked with on campus. Polvi credits his early time at Cal Poly and his degree for his much of what he has and has done in his life.

After working on campus for almost 32 years as an internal consultant for safety issues within Environmental Health and Safety, Tim Hastings will retire from the Cal Poly community. Before coming to Cal Poly, Hastings worked at El Camino College for 10 years as a physics lab technician. After joining the Cal Poly community, he handled a wide range of jobs. The variety was his favorite part of his job. Showing up to work unsure of what he would be tasked with for the day or where on campus he might go kept the job fresh and exciting. Some of the many programs that Hastings managed included respiratory protection, laser safety, asbestos and lead protection, control of hazardous energy and mold protection. Hastings will miss the people he worked with the most. Throughout his time spent at Cal Poly, Hastings thoroughly enjoyed interacting with coworkers and only has pleasant memories. In his retirement, he looks forward to spending time with his family, finalizing home projects that have been put on hold, and doing some long-awaited traveling after being cooped up for so long.

Leah VillaOn Nov. 1, Leah Campbell Villa celebrated her 30th year as an employee in the CSU system. On Dec. 31 she will retire after 13 years at Cal Poly, most recently serving as a policy and risk analyst. In this position, she has coordinated campus responses to Public Records Act requests, updated the online Campus Administrative Policy (CAP) library, and served as a coordinator to the campuswide CAP Committee, among many other duties. Her time in the CSU system began in 1990 at Long Beach State, where she earned her master’s in public administration. In 1999 she headed to Camarillo to take a position as one of the "first 14" administrator-types to start up CSU Channel Islands, working closely with both Cal State University Northridge and the Chancellor's Office. She was promoted to administrator II as manager of Purchasing, Budget and Support Services. In 2007 she was hired by Cal Poly as a buyer III. In her time on campus, she has met so many fantastic people, who she will miss. She said she has had a varied and mostly fun career within the CSU, having never experienced the same day twice on three wonderful campuses.

Debra Valencia-LaverDebra Valencia-Laver, associate dean for operations in the College of Liberal Arts, will retire at the end of December after 29.5 years of service at the university, including 1.5 years as an interim associate dean and another 13.5 years as an associate dean. Throughout her career at Cal Poly, her university service has included work on the Academic Senate, General Education, WASC, and more. She served as the interim chair of the Ethnic Studies Department from fall 2002 to spring 2004. She is proud of being a founding and continuing member of the Chicanx Latinx Faculty Staff Association, serving most recently as the CLFSA liaison for Chicanx Latinx Commencement. Notable achievements as associate dean include the development of majors in ethnic studies and liberal arts and engineering studies, and the recent conversion of the modern languages and literatures major to a Spanish major. A professor in the Psychology and Child Development Department with a specialization in cognition and aging, she hopes to return to teaching as a rehired annuitant in the fall. She deeply appreciates the many connections she has made with staff, faculty and students from across the university and over the years. She will very much miss being a part of the day-to-day operations of the college and university. Join us in signing a virtual card for her here (, where you can write comments and upload photos or video messages.

Druci Reese, Music DepartmentDruci Reese administrative support coordinator, is retiring from Cal Poly at the end of December after almost 35 years of stellar service. She first came to Cal Poly in 1972-75 as a student double majoring in ornamental horticulture and recreation administration. During that time, she worked in the Registrar’s Office until leaving for the Bay Area. She and her family returned to San Luis Obispo in 1985, and she began working in the Music Department in 1986 while she also held a temporary half-time position in the Soil Sciences Department. Reese has served on several university committees, including as the College of Liberal Arts (CLA) representative for the Staff Council formed in 1993, and the staff representative for a CLA dean search. She has served as the staff employment equity facilitator for the Music Department, PAC, Spanos Theatre, Theatre and Dance Department and University Scheduling. She is the recipient of two CLA Staff Recognition Awards: Continuing Excellence (1999) and Outstanding Career Achievement (2019), and the University Outstanding Staff Award (1999-00). She is a font of information and a bastion of support to students, faculty and staff. After retiring, Reese plans to spend more time with friends and family, in particular her grandchildren. She and husband, Ralph, hope to spend more time at their cabin in the Sierra Nevada and travel. More about Reese is on the Music Department website. Join us in signing a virtual card for her.


Campus Announcements

Campus Invited to Donate to Mustang Holiday Gift Card Drive by Dec. 4 

Mustang Holiday Gift Card DriveThe Center for Service in Action (CSA) invites all students, staff, faculty and families to contribute to the Mustang Holiday Gift Card Drive. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic we have suspended the traditional giving-tree tags and shopping aspects of the drive. Campus community members can contribute by donating money via the Mustang Holiday Gift Card Drive's Spur Change crowdfunding website by Friday, Dec. 4, at The CSA will use the donated money to purchase gift cards for children in need served by our community partner agencies this holiday season. Anyone with questions about the Mustang Holiday Gift Card Drive can email the CSA at

Portable Battery Chargers Available to Students, Faculty, Staff for Free

The Outdoor Spaces Project recently purchased portable battery chargers that will be available to support students, faculty and staff in their on-campus virtual work and classes. These new portable chargers will allow the campus community to utilize the multitude of outside study areas on campus without worrying about their laptop’s battery going dead. The chargers can be found at the Tech Desk inside the University Store and will be available to rent for up to four hours free of charge. To check the chargers out, renters will be asked to leave a form of ID or credit card. With these new portable battery chargers, students, faculty and staff will have a wider range of places to work and relax around campus. The Outdoor Spaces Project is jointly funded by Cal Poly, the ASI, and Cal Poly Corporation.


Cal Poly Symphony Opens Season Dec. 4 with Music by Jacob, Walker, Beethoven  

Gordon Jacob, George Walker and Ludwig van BeethovenCal Poly’s Symphony will present music of Gordon Jacob, George Walker and Ludwig van Beethoven in its fall virtual presentation at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 4. In addition to the 20-minute concert portion, student musicians will be interviewed about their experiences with the challenging process of preparing for and presenting a concert during a pandemic, and videos from fall quarter rehearsals will be shown. The program will begin with the first movement of Jacob’s “Old Wine in New Bottles,” a collection of old English folk tunes. The program will continue with Walker’s “Lyric for Strings.” His career included many firsts for a Black instrumentalist: he was the first to perform in Manhattan’s Town Hall, the first to perform with the Philadelphia Orchestra, the first to be signed by a major management, the first to earn a doctorate from the Eastman School of Music, and in 1996, he became the first Black composer to be awarded the Pulitzer Prize in music. The program will also include the second movement of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 in A Major, which was composed between 1811 and 1812. Tickets are sold at the Performing Arts Center, ext. 6-4849. For more information, visit the Music Department calendar website.

Cal Poly Choirs to Present Annual ‘Holiday Kaleidoscope’ on Dec. 6

Three student members of Cal Poly ChoirsThe Cal Poly Choirs will present the fourth annual — and first virtual — “Holiday Kaleidoscope” at 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 6. A variety of virtual choir presentations will be featured, with special guest appearances by the Valencia High School Choirs and Canzona Women’s Ensemble, among others. All four Cal Poly choral ensembles will perform: PolyPhonics, the Women’s Chorus, Chamber Choir and University Singers. The Valencia High School Choirs will be directed by Cal Poly alumna Christine Tavares-Mocha (Music, ’01). The four university choirs and the guest choirs will each perform a few short selections of repertoire, and the groups will unite for some works as well. The concert will close with a special setting of the traditional carol “Silent Night.” Paul Woodring is the accompanist for the Cal Poly choirs, which are conducted by Scott Glysson. Those who attend the concert are invited to a post-concert talk and will be able to interact with students and Glysson. Tickets to the concert are $10. A $15 backstage pass ticket includes both the concert and the post-concert session. For more information, visit the Music Department calendar website.

Event Calendar

To find out what’s going on at Cal Poly, visit the Events Calendar. The site includes community events that are open to the public and Campus Life events open to students, faculty and staff. The calendar also includes events at the Performing Arts Center. A link from the calendar allows staff, faculty and students to check facility availability before requesting and reserving on-campus locations for activities and events. For more information about publishing an event on the calendar, contact Virtual events can also be publicized via the University events calendar. Email the Events team with details and they will assist with adding your information.

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For an overview of up-to-date sports information, photos and videos, visit Per guidelines from the state and San Luis Obispo County Public Health, no fans will be permitted for these events. This guideline will be revisited for future events.

Upcoming Events @ Home

Friday, Nov. 27
Men's Basketball vs. Bethesda, Mott Athletics Center, 4 p.m.

Monday, Dec. 14
Women's Basketball vs. Santa Clara, Mott Athletics Center, 3 p.m.

Wednesday, Dec. 16
Men's Basketball vs. San Diego, Mott Athletics Center, 3 p.m.

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Job Vacancies

Employment Opportunities

For all available job openings, visit All new positions opened this week are listed below. To apply, go online and complete the application form. Current employees can also find job postings at CSU Careers, an internal job site for CSU employees. For assistance, call Human Resources at ext. 6-2236. 

#497556 — Police Dispatcher I, Administration and Finance — University Police Department. $37,152-$67,224 per year. Anticipated hiring range: $48,000-$60,000 per year. Open until closed.

#498019 — Police Sergeant, Administration and Finance — University Police Department. $68,016-$105,000 per year. Anticipated hiring range: $68,016-$96,000 per year. Open until closed.

To find internally posted positions, start from the Cal Poly Portal. Click “Cal Poly Jobs” on the left-hand menu. On the next page click “Apply.” All internally and externally posted positions appear there. For a full list of available jobs, go to

Faculty Employment Opportunities

Visit for all available job openings. The part-time lecturer pools are now open. Visit for current openings, further information and how to apply. For assistance, call Academic Personnel at ext. 6-2844. 

There are no new listings this week.

Corporation Employment Opportunities

Cal Poly Corporation is a separate entity operating in concert with the university to provide a diverse range of services and resources to students, faculty and staff. To view all available job postings or apply, visit the Corporation website. For assistance, contact Human Resources at ext. 6-1121.

There are no new listings this week.

ASI Employment Opportunities

Candidates are asked to visit the ASI website to complete an ASI application and apply for open positions. For more information, visit the ASI Business Office in UU 212 or call ext. 6-5800.

There are no new listings this week.

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Submission Guidelines for Cal Poly Report

Cal Poly Report (CPR) is Cal Poly's official employee newsletter, designed to communicate information about officially sanctioned university news or events to faculty, staff and administrators. Submissions may run a maximum of three times and should be limited to 150 words. To help ensure CPR continues to contain only relevant and approved information, submissions are required to come from or be approved by the employee designated to approve submissions in the respective colleges, units and work areas. A list of designated approvers is available on the Cal Poly Report index website. Entries submitted by those other than the designated approver must be accompanied by an approval form signed by the unit's approver. The approval form is available online in fillable pdf format or a downloadable Microsoft Word format. CPR is published weekly during the school year, except during academic breaks, and monthly in the summer. The deadline for each issue is 12:30 p.m. the Friday prior to publication.

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