Recent News

Cal Poly’s 2022 Incoming Class is Once Again Most Diverse in University History

Nov 7, 2022

As Cal Poly Seeks to Mirror California’s Demographics, University Initiatives Lead to Continued Improvement Over Last Five Years

SAN LUIS OBISPO — Cal Poly announced today that its 2022 incoming class is again the most diverse in the university’s history.

Following the official fall census count, the university confirmed the incoming class includes the highest-ever percentages of women; students from partner high schools; first-generation students; Asian students; and Hispanic/Latino students. The class is extremely high-performing, with the GPA of the incoming class of first-time, first-year students being the highest in Cal Poly’s history.

This year’s numbers continue a trend of Cal Poly’s incoming student classes being increasingly diverse. For the last five years, each incoming class has been the university’s most diverse ever.

Cal Poly President Emeritus Warren J. Baker, Who Led University for More Than 31 Years, Has Passed Away

Oct 8, 2022

Second-longest serving leader guided the Learn by Doing campus from 1979 to 2010

Cal Poly President Emeritus Warren J. Baker in 2010

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — Warren J. Baker, Cal Poly’s president emeritus and its eighth overall and second-longest serving leader, died Friday, Oct. 7. He was 84.

Baker’s leadership was instrumental in transforming Cal Poly into one of the highest-ranked public master’s polytechnical institutions in the nation.

"The Cal Poly community has lost a true champion of Learn by Doing and a leader who helped architect what our university is today — a campus in high demand among California’s and the nation’s best and brightest students and a producer of thousands of Day-One-ready graduates poised to address the world’s most pressing problems,” said Cal Poly President Jeffrey D. Armstrong. “While we are tremendously saddened by the passing of Warren Baker, we are so grateful for the 31 years of leadership he provided to Cal Poly.”

It was “almost by accident’’ that Baker became a university president, let alone stayed at Cal Poly for 31 years, retiring in 2010. He had served in various capacities as teacher, researcher, engineering practitioner and university administrator for more than 40 years.

“I accidentally got into this at a relatively young age, when I tried out being a dean at a college of engineering,” he said in 2010 on the eve of his retirement. “I really thought that I would not stay in the academic world. I didn’t have a plan to be a university president.”

Cal Poly, Madden Family Announce Plans for John Madden Football Center

Oct 1, 2022

Planned facility will serve as headquarters for Cal Poly Football Program 
SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — Cal Poly and the family of alumnus and NFL Hall of Fame coach and commentator John Madden are pleased to announce the John Madden Football Center, a new home for Cal Poly Football. 
Led by President Jeffrey D. Armstrong and Head Football Coach Beau Baldwin, Cal Poly has worked for the past few years with John Madden and his son, Mike, to envision a new headquarters for the university’s football program. Thanks to the Madden family’s support and engagement, in two years, Cal Poly football fans will see the center come to life beyond the south end zone at Alex G. Spanos Stadium. 
The project was publicly announced by Virginia Madden, John Madden’s wife and Cal Poly alumna, along with her sons, Mike and Joe, and grandson, Jack, at halftime of Cal Poly's Big Sky Conference football game Oct. 1 against Sacramento State. John Madden, who played football and baseball at Cal Poly in the late 1950s before embarking on a long coaching and broadcasting career in the NFL, passed away in December at 85.

Cal Poly Earns 30th Consecutive Best in the West Ranking in U.S. News and World Report

Sep 12, 2022

The Cal Poly campus with Bishop Peak in the background.
SAN LUIS OBISPO — Cal Poly, the Golden State’s first public polytechnic school that launched its renowned Learn by Doing education in 1903, has been named the best public, master’s-level university in the West for the 30th straight year in U.S. News & World Report’s annual Best Colleges guidebook.
The 2023 guide, released Sept. 12, assessed an all-time high 1,500 U.S. bachelor’s degree-granting institutions on 17 measures of academic quality. It lists Cal Poly as No. 2 overall in the West — the same as last year — and as the region’s top-ranked public master’s-level university.
In addition, Cal Poly was again named No. 1 in the West for Most Innovative Schools; several Cal Poly College of Engineering programs were ranked among the best in the nation for masters-level educational institutions; and the university was for the third straight year ranked as the top school in the West for veterans among public and private institutions that participate in federal initiatives helping veterans and active-duty service members pay for their degrees.

Cal Poly Music Department to Host a Summer Music Camp for High School Students

Mar 16, 2023

Application Review Period Runs from April 1-June 1

High school students participate in a 2022 Music Department summer music camp

SAN LUIS OBISPO — The Cal Poly Music Department will host its 2023 Summer Music Camp from Wednesday, June 28, through Saturday, July 1, on campus.

Applications are being accepted now for the camp, which is open to all California high-school-age vocalists and instrumentalists.

Participants will be able to stay in residence halls while they engage in a variety of opportunities, including rehearsing with faculty and students in a choir, concert band or string chamber group; having private lessons with Cal Poly instructors; sampling music classes; spending time with current music majors; and exploring San Luis Obispo and local areas of interest.

Cal Poly Music Department to Present Open House Recital on April 15

Mar 16, 2023

A string quartet, three violinists and a cellist, performs at Cal Poly

SAN LUIS OBISPO — The Cal Poly Music Department will present an Open House Recital at 2 p.m. Saturday, April 15, in the Davidson Music Center (No. 45) on campus.

The recital is one of many scheduled events for Cal Poly’s 30th annual Open House.

Both instrumentalists and vocalists will be featured. The student performers are from a variety of majors, and all are involved in at least one of the department’s large, premier ensembles including Cal Poly’s Arab Music Ensemble, Choirs, Symphony, University Jazz Bands, Wind Orchestra and Wind Ensemble.

Cal Poly Student Opera Theatre to Present ‘Spring Opera Scenes’ on April 15

Mar 16, 2023

SAN LUIS OBISPO — Cal Poly Student Opera Theatre (CPSOT) will present “Spring Opera Scenes” at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 15, in the Spanos Theatre on campus.

The program will feature a delightful array of duets, trios and ensemble numbers from works including Giuseppe Verdi’s famous “Brindisi” from “La Traviata,” Gaetano Donizetti’s sassy “gossip chorus” from “The Elixir of Love,” and CPSOT’s first-ever stage brawl from Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s comedy “Le nozze di Figaro.” Other operas featured include Engelbert Humperdinck’s “Hansel and Gretel,” Johann Strauss’ “Die Fledermaus,” and George Frideric Handel’s “Giulio Cesare.”

Cal Poly’s PolyRhythmics to Present Concert on Campus April 18

Mar 16, 2023

SAN LUIS OBISPO — PolyRhythmics, Cal Poly’s percussion ensemble, will give its annual concert at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 18, in the Pavilion of the Performing Arts Center's Christopher Cohan Center.

“We’ve got a good one for you this year,” said John Astaire, the ensemble’s director. Among the works to be performed are “Starfall,” a new composition for percussion quintet and piano by James Vilseck; and “Ionisation,” Edgar Varèse’s landmark percussion ensemble work written in 1933.

Cal Poly English Professor Explains ChatGPT’s Limitations and Its Teaching Potential

Mar 16, 2023

Jason Peters to speak on the AI chatbot at Good Morning SLO on March 23

Jason Peters, associate professor of English at Cal Poly

SAN LUIS OBISPO, California — While the artificial intelligence (AI) chatbot ChatGPT has caused disruption and concern in many educational and professional settings across the nation, one Cal Poly English professor said the program is only as good as its user — at least for now.

“I’ve been experimenting with making ChatGPT produce what I would consider to be college-level writing — the kind of prose a highly capable first-year Cal Poly student might compose — and what immediately became apparent to me is that the quality of ChatGPT’s output is only as good as the prompts you feed it,” said Jason Peters, associate professor of English and coordinator of the Cal Poly English Department’s first-year composition program in the College of Liberal Arts.

As an expert in composition and linguistics, Peters has been experimenting with the program since its release in November 2022. He found that while the AI is effective at composing essays, it currently lacks the ability and sophistication needed for college-level writing.

Inspired by Beer Bottle Carriers, a Multi-Purpose, Sustainable Fruit Package Designed by Cal Poly Students Earns Recognition During Competitions Aimed at Reducing Plastics

Mar 13, 2023

Project aligns with state law requiring all packaging to be recyclable or compostable by 2032

Members of Cal Poly's award-winning he award-winning Froot team with advisor Javier de la Fuente

SAN LUIS OBISPO — After setting out to design a sustainable package for produce, a team of Cal Poly students looked to other products — including beer carriers — for inspiration for a design that earned second place in an international packaging competition.

“Once we decided on a product, we started the process of creating prototypes and built about 10 to 15 completely different ideas before we found the right structure,” said team member Heather Lopez, an Industrial Technology and Packaging (ITP) student from Anaheim, California. “We drew inspiration from beverage carriers and lunch boxes for the structure, citrus slices and fruit bowls for the shape, and natural and geometric designs for the aesthetics.”

Cal Poly’s Froot team was one of three that advanced to the Paperboard Packaging Alliance finals in Austin, Texas, last fall, ultimately taking second and an invitation to compete at the WorldStar Global Packaging Awards, the most prestigious and important student packaging contest in the globe with competitors from 37 countries. The team received three medals: a silver for second overall among the 440 global competitors; a gold for marketing appeal; and a bronze medal for sustainability.


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