California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly SLO) is located due north of downtown and highway 101. Just look for the concrete “P” stuck on the side of a hill above the campus. This four year college is known for its engineering, agricultural & business schools as well as IT and computer programming degrees. Cal Poly’s motto is “Learn by doing.” This motto is evident on campus as there are over 350 different clubs and many ‘hands on’ laboratories.
At the Cal Poly store you can buy Cal Poly ice cream made by the students and also Cal Poly milk. Student led tours of the campus are given M, W, or F at 10AM or 2PM. The tours- question/answers phone number is (805) 756-2792.
In 1996 construction on a performing arts center was completed and concerts and symphonies are regularly held in its main hall. Often celebrities and well known musicians perform here. Every once in a while Wierd Al Yankovich returns to his Alma Mater and performs. Rumor has it he recorded his first hit in one of the bathrooms on campus. The acoustics are tremendous. Tickets can be purchased by calling (805) 756-2787.
In fact over the last few years Cal Poly has seen quite a dramatic increase in new buildings on the campus. New engineering labs sprung up – a parking garage was added just a number of of years ago, a “sports complex” was more recently finished, and in 2003 a set of very nice new dorms were built on campus. Construction ended in late 2005 on a series of Engineering labs towards the lower end of campus near Engineering Building 13 and several more Engineering buildings have been completed – sitting on what was the main library parking lot.
The latest wave of construction started in 2006. Major renovation improvements to the football stadium were completed. Huge towers, expanded seating and a memorial to a plane crash carrying Cal Poly football players were part of these renovations. Additional construction on new buildings continues today.
The huge Poly Canyon Village was completed in early 2009 and is Cal Poly’s own unique ‘town’. It is a series of dorms, other student facilities and two parking garages built at the north entrance to Poly Canyon. This major development spans 30 acres and houses over 2700 continuing students. A central retail plaza is located on site with the campus’s second recreation center and a swimming pool, study rooms, knowledge center, and conference room. Pretty plush!
The Robert E. Kennedy library was built in 1980 and is named after a former president of the University, (not JFK’s brother). This library, the heart of the campus, contains over 620,000 books and 500,000 government documents.
For more information about the University please visit: www.calpoly.edu and for those who want to do some ‘Mustang’ shopping but don’t want to visit the store on campus, consider stopping by their downtown store.