Recent News

Cal Poly Students’ Sustainable Packaging Design for San Luis Obispo Business Wins First Place in National Competition

May 2, 2022

Cupcake packaging boxes with specialized labels


SAN LUIS OBISPO — After a year of research and development, a team of Cal Poly students gained hands-on experience designing new sustainable packaging and labels for a San Luis Obispo-based gourmet cupcake and dessert business — and took first place for its effort.


Seven graphic communications students participated in the Phoenix Challenge, a yearlong project in which students help a local small business rebrand and market itself with materials using the flexographic print process, a technique that uses a flexible plate to print on a variety of materials.

The students, Naomi Furuya, Mandy Ko, Isabel Lao, Kaitlin Sakae, Ashley Rubens, Madeline Wales and Sadie Curdts, won first place at the college-level competition in March against teams from across the U.S. This year’s theme was sustainable packaging for sustainable business, and the students focused on helping a local small business reduce packaging costs and make their brand stand out.

Cal Poly Students Design Innovative Technology Solution to Make School Buildings in Developing Countries Safer in Collaboration with the World Bank

Apr 28, 2022

Team of computer science and software engineering students and faculty design mobile app and data management solution to improve structural integrity in vulnerable school buildings

A school suffered massive damaged in a 7.8 magnitude quake in Nepal

SAN LUIS OBISPO — The Cal Poly Digital Transformation Hub (DxHub) powered by Amazon Web Services (AWS) and a team of Cal Poly students designed a mobile app for the World Bank to help improve school safety in developing countries, projecting to reduce costs and time by 50%.

Millions of children’s lives and billions of dollars in infrastructure are at stake, since disasters such as earthquakes and cyclones put more than 1 million school buildings in low- and middle-income countries at risk of collapsing. An estimated 875 million children and teachers could be injured or die in damaged school buildings, according to World Bank figures. In addition, when schools close as a result of disasters, there are indirect losses as students are deprived of learning opportunities, further compounding the impacts.

Cal Poly Students Studying Effects of Climate Change Earn Prestigious Research Fellowships

Apr 27, 2022

Student Annie Meeder on a grassland plot on Santa Cruz Island

SAN LUIS OBISPO — Two Cal Poly graduate students in the biological sciences program were awarded National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowships to support their ongoing research on responses to environmental changes to plants and animals in California.

Annie Meeder, a first-year graduate student from Paso Robles, with the support of her faculty advisor, Jenn Yost of the Biological Sciences Department, is studying dynamics of Santa Cruz Island vegetation communities and how these communities have changed in response to certain historical disturbances.

Cal Poly Corporation Holds Open Call for Public Art for Via Carta Mural Project

Apr 27, 2022

Planned Campus Project Will Feature Agricultural Bounty, Beauty of Central Coast
SAN LUIS OBISPO — The Cal Poly Corporation is inviting proposals for the design and creation of a mural to be installed in a soon-to-be-renovated outdoor corridor on Cal Poly’s campus.

The Via Carta Mural Project is seeking artist proposals to transform a divided triptych wall at the intersection of Highland Drive and Via Carta into a vibrant mural that encourages student and community interaction while highlighting the agricultural bounty and beauty of the Central Coast.  

Cal Poly Wind Bands’ Season Finale Concert ‘Sounds of Color’ Set for May 27

Apr 27, 2022

SAN LUIS OBISPO — The Cal Poly Wind Bands’ Spring Concert, “Sounds of Color,” will be held at 7:30 p.m. Friday, May 27, in Miossi Hall of the Performing Arts Center. It is the season finale of the Wind Ensemble and Wind Orchestra.

The title “Sounds of Color” is inspired by composer Robert Russell Bennett’s “Suite of Old American Dances,” which will be performed by the Wind Orchestra. Bennett’s inspiration was attending an amusement park as a child and hearing the sounds around him. He once said the park was “… a place of magic to us kids. The tricks with big electric signs, the illuminated fountains, the big band concerts, all the different colors and types of sound, the scenic railway, and the big dance hall. One could hear in the dance hall all afternoon and evening the pieces the crowd danced to.”

Cal Poly Spring Jazz Concert on May 28 to Celebrate New Single

Apr 27, 2022

Vocal Jazz Ensemble performs at the Feb. 18 Winter Jazz Concert

SAN LUIS OBISPO —Cal Poly’s Jazz Ensemble and Vocal Jazz Ensemble will present the Spring Jazz Concert at 7:30 Saturday, May 28, in Spanos Theatre.

The concert will celebrate the digital release of the Vocal Jazz Ensemble’s new single, “Sunlight,” which is an arrangement by Cal Poly Director of Jazz Studies Arthur White of a tune by Esperanza Spalding. Music major and vocalist Danna Dumandan and Grammy award-winning drummer Gregg Bissonette are featured on the recording, and White performs the other instruments. The single will be available from streaming music services the week of May 23 and is part of a full album that is scheduled to be released in the fall.

Cal Poly to Open New Latinx Center in Fall 2022

Apr 26, 2022

SAN LUIS OBISPO — Cal Poly plans to open a new Latinx Center during fall quarter 2022, with a tentative grand opening ceremony and celebration slated as part of Latinx Heritage Month in September.
The new center is intended to create an environment that fosters belonging, empowers Latinx students to thrive, and provides them holistic support. In turn, the center will offer Latinx students the opportunity to gather and build community while exploring their cultures, histories and traditions. Open to all students, the center will feature an accessible computer lab, lounge space and culturally relevant workshops and collaborative programming.
The Latinx Center will be the newest addition to Student Diversity and Belonging (SDAB), a collective of campus resource centers within Student Affairs that aim to provide a home away from home for underrepresented students at Cal Poly.

Cal Poly Finance Team Advances in Global Competition with Analysis of PayPal Stock Outlook

Apr 26, 2022

Business Students won local, regional titles in CFA Investment Research Challenge and
advanced to the highest level of any team from the university’s Orfalea College of Business
A team of five Orfalea College of Business students advanced to the next stage of the 2021-22 Chartered Financial Analyst Institute Research Challenge. Finance students, from left, Dominic Juliano, Samuel Paik, Alexandra Joelson (team captain), Cameron Wong and Shingo O’Flaherty represented Cal Poly in the annual global competition.
SAN LUIS OBISPO — A detailed analysis of PayPal’s stock outlook, with a recommendation to sell, helped a team of Cal Poly finance students surpass hundreds of others recently in the Chartered Financial Analyst Institute Research Challenge.
Competing against over 900 schools from North, Central and South America, the Cal Poly team was one of just 17 that advanced to the Americas' semifinals held this month, having won the local and subregional stages. The global competition includes over 5,000 undergraduate and graduate students from universities in more than 91 countries. Students are tested on their analytical, valuation, report writing and presentation skills.

Cal Poly Animal Science Students Advance to National Competition with First-Place Win

Apr 25, 2022

Four Cal Poly Animal Science award winners and their faculty mentor

SAN LUIS OBISPO — Cal Poly animal science students used their knowledge of drought, livestock and rangeland management to win a recent regional competition, advancing them to the nationals in June. The team animal science majors took first place at the 2022 Western Section of the American Society of Animal Science Academic Quadrathlon, held April 1-2 at Cal Poly.

The team included Sophia Juarez from San Pedro, California; Rachael Stucke, from San Mateo, California; Ashley Tartaglia, from Delano, California; and Genna Vieira, from Fremont, California. They competed in four events: a written exam, oral presentation, a practicum of eight labs, and a quiz bowl.

Cal Poly’s Leaning Pine Arboretum Receives $1 Million Donation for Upgrades and Improved Programming

Apr 25, 2022

Gift from longtime university supporters Kathleen Enz Finken (former provost) and Gerald Finken honors agriculture dean Andrew J. Thulin

Former Cal Poly Provost Kathleen Enz Finken and husband Gerald Finken

SAN LUIS OBISPO — Kathleen Enz Finken, Cal Poly’s provost from 2012-19, and her husband, Gerald Finken, both longtime supporters of Cal Poly, have donated $1 million to the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Science’s Leaning Pine Arboretum. The gift was made in honor of Andrew J. Thulin, the college’s dean since 2013 and former head of the college’s Animal Science Department.

Nestled on five acres, the Leaning Pine Arboretum is Cal Poly’s living classroom for students, faculty and the community. The arboretum features a stunning array of landscape plants representing the world’s five Mediterranean climate regions.

This collection of landscaping serves multiple purposes for the university and community. An extension of the Cal Poly Horticulture and Crop Science Department’s Environmental Horticulture Science facility, the arboretum’s foremost goal remains education: a resource for independent study, research and workshops that promote horticulture best practices for Cal Poly students and faculty spanning numerous areas of study.


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