Cal Poly Spring 2018 Commencement Ceremonies Set for June 16 and 17

SAN LUIS OBISPO — More than 4,800 students are eligible to graduate in three ceremonies at Cal Poly’s spring commencement Saturday and Sunday, June 16 and 17. The ceremonies will begin at 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. Sunday in Spanos Stadium.

“Commencement is big day in the lives of our students and their families,” said Cal Poly President Jeffrey D. Armstrong. “For many, it is the exclamation mark on their educational experience at Cal Poly. They are leaving the university ready to begin a new challenge. I know that many will evolve into industry leaders and practitioners of innovation and creativity — skills developed and honed through Learn by Doing.

“These ceremonies not only recognize their years of dedication, commitment and hard work. Commencement also offers us the opportunity to highlight those individuals who helped our graduates get to where they are today — a nurturing support network that includes family, friends, their professors and the professionals in their fields of study. All members of the Mustang family are beaming with pride today.”

Andy Jassy, the leader of Amazon Web Services, the world’s top cloud computing platform provider, and Wyatt Oroke, the inspiring Cal Poly alumnus-turned-humanities teacher who gained overnight fame on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” will deliver keynote addresses at the ceremonies. Oroke will address graduates of the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences and College of Science and Mathematics at 9 a.m. and graduates from the College of Liberal Arts and Orfalea College of Business at 3 p.m. on June 16. Jassy will address graduates from the College of Engineering and College of Architecture and Environmental Design at 9 a.m. June 17.

The university will award honorary doctorate degrees to three individuals: wine pioneer Jerry Lohr; educator Margaret Fortune; and retired PG&E executive Ed Halpin. Lohr, a key supporter of Cal Poly’s wine and viticulture program, will receive the honor during the Saturday morning ceremony. Fortune, a former CSU trustee who launched the Fortune School, a network of tuition-free, college preparatory, public charter schools in Sacramento and San Bernardino counties, will be recognized during the afternoon ceremony. Halpin, who for five years oversaw PG&E’s nuclear assets, (including Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant) and who has served on the President’s Council of Advisors at Cal Poly since 2015, will be honored during the Sunday ceremony.

More than 40,000 visitors are expected to attend Cal Poly’s 77th annual commencement ceremonies.

Permits are not required to park on campus during commencement. Because of road closures and residence hall move-out traffic, guests need to enter campus from Highland Drive. Follow directional signs for parking. General parking will be available to all graduates and guests in lots H1, H 2, H12, H14 and H16.

Accessible parking for guests with mobility impairments will be available in lots C7, H2 and the Grand Avenue Structure. All vehicles must have a valid accessible parking place card or license plate in order to park in accessible lots.

Shuttles will be available for guests with mobility impairments and one companion. For additional parking and shuttle information, visit

Parking, shuttle and other commencement-related information can be found on the Cal Poly Now app. To download and learn more, visit

Note: Reporters and photographers planning to cover commencement will need credentials. Please contact University Communications before Friday, June 15, to arrange for credentials.

Contact: Matt Lazier

June 13, 2018

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