Cal Poly CLA News

The latest online edition of CLA's Impact Magazine

Faculty Excellence

Faculty Excellence

 Foaad Khosmood and Cameron Jones

Who Were the African Californios? Researchers Uncover California's Untold Black History

When most people think of early California history, they might remember Spanish conquistadors, Indigenous tribes, missions or white American prospectors — but probably nothing about Black people. An interdisciplinary group of Cal Poly researchers is working to change that perception by unearthing the largely untold history of settlers of African descent in early California.

Read more about their research.


Mariachi band members playing at the 2023 HSI Symposium

Six CLA Professors Awarded Inaugural HSI Mini Grants

At the inaugural Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) Symposium last October, the Office of University Diversity and Inclusion (OUDI) announced the Cal Poly HSI Mini-Grant Program to further the university's mission of becoming an HSI that thinks critically and holistically about serving the Latine/x community. Out of 39 applications, OUDI selected 16 projects for funding including five CLA projects led by six CLA faculty members and one student ranging from English to communication studies to music to psychology and child development.

Learn more about the six projects.


Graphic with a police car, map and computer

Predicting Crime

Artificial intelligence made headlines —and generated controversy — this year when tools like DALL-E and ChatGPT rocked the art and literary worlds. But AI is also gaining ground in another area: law enforcement. This fall, Cal Poly ethics professor Ryan Jenkins and an interdisciplinary team of researchers published a new report analyzing one emerging AI policing tool, known as place-based algorithmic patrol management — often known simply as “predictive policing.”

Read more the Q&A with Jenkins.


Julie Herndon and Michael Haungs

A Place to Innovate

This spring, Cal Poly dedicated the newest hub for learning on campus: the William and Linda Frost Center for Research and Innovation. The new interdisciplinary research center features state-of-the-art laboratory
and teaching spaces that enhance research and learning experiences for students and faculty in the College of Liberal Arts; Bailey College of Science and Mathematics; and the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences.

Learn more about how the CLA engages in innovative storytelling.


Pumpkins and candles

Wanna Hear a Ghost Story? Here's Why We Love Them, According to Professors

As we get closer to Halloween (and bulk-buy candy at Costco and Target), many folks are also dusting off ghost stories to tell at parties, cracking open a Stephen King novel, or frantically Googling which streaming service has their favorite scary movie for a good seasonal watch. But what draws us to these chilling tales? Cal Poly News spoke to three English professors who have studied horror in film or literature to learn more.      

Read the Halloween-themed Q&A.


Sabrina Canady

Q&A with CLA Lead Academic Advisor Sabrina Canady 

In celebration of National Transfer Student Week, we sat down with Sabrina Canady, lead advisor for the College of Liberal Arts’ Advising Center. Canady shared her experience as a transfer student and gave insight into how she is helping the College of Liberal Arts become more transfer friendly.       

Read more about how Canady is helping the CLA become more transfer-friendly.


Media Innovation

Journalism Department to Offer New Concentration in Media Innovation

The Cal Poly Journalism Department is now one of only a handful of programs in the country offering a concentration in media innovation, allowing students to focus their studies on the intersection of journalism, business and technology. 

Read more about the new concentration.



GrC Department

Cal Poly Graphic Communication Department Re-Accredited for Six Years 

The Cal Poly Graphic Communication Department has been re-accredited for another six-year cycle after a unanimous vote by the Accrediting Council for Collegiate Graphic Communications (ACCGC). The department has been accredited since the ACCGC’s inception in 1998. 

Read more about the accreditation process.



Fox News Settlement Graphic

Ask an Expert: What Does the Fox Settlement Mean for Journalism?

In April, Fox News agreed to a historic $787.5 million payment to settle a high-profile defamation case brought by Dominion Voting Systems over the media company’s many false claims about the integrity of the 2020 presidential election. Cal Poly News asked three CLA faculty members with different areas of expertise to break down the implications of the case for journalism, first amendment rights and election integrity.

Read more from journalism and political science faculty.


Deb Donig

Ask an Expert: What Are the Ethical Implications of ChatGPT?

If science fiction can be believed, the robots are coming for all of us — but the latest advances in artificial intelligence (AI) technology are starting to make fiction seem like reality. With the recent headlines about rogue chatbots and universities using ChatGPT to generate condolence letters, Cal Poly News turned to English Professor Deb Donig, cofounder of the Ethical Technology Initiative at Cal Poly, to give her insight into the ethical implications of AI, specifically ChatGPT.

Read Donig's insight into the ethical implications of AI.


Jason Peters

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

As an expert in composition and rhetoric, English Associate Professor Jason Peters has been experimenting with ChatGPT 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.

Read more about his thoughts on using ChatGPT for teaching.


Domber and Rosenthal

Cal Poly Named a Top Producer of 2022-23 U.S. Fulbright Scholars

Three Cal Poly faculty were awarded grants for the 2022-23 academic year including: Greg Domber, lecturer in the History Department, and Mira Rosenthal, associate professor of English, are teaching and conducting research at the Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Poland.

Read more about their research.



Teach In Drum Circle

Campus Community Talks Equity, Inclusion in Range of Topics At Teach In

At the seventh annual Teach In on Feb. 9, students, faculty, staff and community members gathered for a day of learning, discussion and deep thinking on equity and social justice topics.

Read more about the day-long event.



Patrick Lin headshot

Cal Poly Philosopher Patrick Lin Appointed to U.S. National Space Council’s Users Advisory Group

In a White House announcement Dec. 16, Vice President Kamala Harris, chair of the National Space Council (NSpC), appointed Cal Poly Professor Patrick Lin, Ph.D., to the council’s Users Advisory Group (UAG). 

Learn more about prestigious appointment.



Robot hand graphic

Cal Poly Wins $700,000 Federal Grant to Study the Social Impacts of AI Kitchens and Robot Cooks 

The Ethics + Emerging Sciences Group has been awarded a grant of over $700,000 from the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) to study the social and ethical impacts of robot kitchens, which are already at work in some restaurants. 

Learn more about the four-year project.



Ethics + Emerging Sciences Group

Cal Poly Wins First-Ever Grant on Space Cybersecurity from US National Science Foundation

Cal Poly’s Ethics + Emerging Sciences Group has been awarded a $300,000 grant from the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) to study outer space cybersecurity, both technical and policy dimensions. The two-year project is the first that the NSF has funded on the subject. 

Learn more about the project led by philosophy Professor Patrick Lin.



Shane Martinez

Meet Five Faculty Members Making Room for Inclusion in Their Courses

In 2019, Cal Poly launched a university-wide push to increase diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) efforts by hiring 13 tenure-track professors, including English Assistant Professor Shanae Martinez, in a move known as a DEI-focused cluster hire. The campuswide initiative followed the successful college-based DEI-focused cluster hire by the College of Liberal Arts in 2017.

Meet some faculty from the 2019 cluster hire.


Ethical Tech graphic

Two CLA Professors Receive National Science Foundation Grant to Assess the Profession of Ethical Technology

The professors, alongside a team of faculty, students and a consultant, are researching the recent “techlash” phenomenon — a growing negative feeling towards big technology and new technological innovation — as it relates to ethics and the future of work.

Learn more about their research project.



Michael Latner

Sociology Professor Sheds a Light on Racial and Sexual Minorities' Experiences

Assistant Professor of Sociology Jess Lee joined the College of Liberal Arts in the fall of 2020. She studies the intersection of race and sexual orientation and how social structures impact minorities’ identity-based group membership.

Learn more about Lee's research.



Michael Latner

Political Science Professor Gives Expert Witness Testimony in Ohio Supreme Court Gerrymandering Case 

While multiple stories from local news organizations discuss the new San Luis Obispo County redistricting map, political science Associate Professor Michael Latner is playing a key role in the redistricting of Ohio.

 Read more about the case and Latner's role.



Fulbright Program

Cal Poly Professor Publishes Groundbreaking Study on the History of Gay Pornography 

Cal Poly Assistant Professor of English Steven Ruszczycky published a groundbreaking book “Vulgar Genres: On Gay Pornographic Writing and Contemporary Fiction” with the University of Chicago Press.

 Read more about Ruszczycky's findings.



Fulbright Program

A Pair of Married CLA Faculty Members to Pursue Fulbright Scholarships in Poland 

In 2003, Cal Poly faculty members Gregory Domber and Mira Rosenthal met in Poland while pursuing Student Fulbright Scholarships as graduate students. Later this year, the now-married couple will return to the country where they met as Fulbright U.S. Scholars for the 2022-23 academic year.

 Read more about the Domber's and Rosenthal's scholarships.


Fulbright Program

Cal Poly Journalism Department granted full accreditation status

The Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications (ACEJMC) voted 18-0 at its April 29 meeting in Chicago in favor of the Journalism Department receiving full accreditation.

 Read more about the department's achievement.




Terrance Harris Awards

Nine CLA Professors receive 2022 Poly Reps Terrance Harris Awards 

At this year’s celebration of the 2022 Poly Reps Terrance Harris Mentorship Awards, nine members of the College of Liberal Arts’ faculty were recognized for their impact on Poly Reps students.

 Read more about the professors recognized at this year's ceremony.




Music Lecturer John Astaire Shares His Lifelong Passion for Music with the Community

Music lecturer John Astaire's roots in San Luis Obispo go way back. A San Luis Obispo High School and Cal Poly graduate, Astaire uses his time — both at work and off — to share his passion for music with the community.

 Read more about Astaire's story.



CLA Lecturer Named First 5 SLO County's January "Hands-on Hero @Work"

Women’s, Gender and Queer Studies Department Lecturer Christina Lefevre Latner (MPP, '14) was named First 5 SLO County’s January “Hands-on Hero @Work” in recognition of her work spearheading the Family-Friendly Workplace Accelerator Program.

 Read more about Lefevre Latner's work.



Ethnic Studies Department Welcomes Three New Faculty Members In DEI-Focused Cluster Hire

In 2021, the Ethnic Studies Department welcomed Assistant Professors Dan Castilow, Lydia Heberling and Ryan Buyco as part of CLA’s 2021-22 DEI-Focused Cluster Hires.

 Read more about the new hires.



R.G. Cravens

Political Science Professor R.G. Cravens Selected as Public Fellow for Public Religion Research Institute’s New Initiative

Professor R.G. Cravens will be one of 16 public fellows to pioneer the Public Religion Research Institute’s (PRRI) new Religion and Renewing Democracy initiative. 

 Read more about Cravens' new position.



Professor Jenell Navarro speaks at NAICC opening

Ethnic Studies Professor Jenell Navarro Speaks at Native American and Indigenous Cultural Center Opening

Professor Jenell Navarro speaks at the center's celebration Oct. 14. She has worked for 10 years to bring the Native American and Indigenous Cultural Center to life at Cal Poly.

Read more about Navarro's work for the Native and Indigenous community at Cal Poly.


Fall Conference

CLA Professors Francisco Fernflores and Brad Campbell Among Three Cal Poly Professors to Receive Distinguished Teaching Awards

Fernflores, professor of philosophy, and Cambell, associate professor of English, receive Distinguished Teaching Awards and discuss their goals for the next academic year.

Read more about the awards and Fernflores' Campbell's plans for this year.



Fricker's burned childhood home.

Social sciences Assistant Professor Andrew Fricker helps lead team of students create new wildfire assessment technology

Fricker, along with another assistant professor in the Computer Science Department and a team of students, have used artificial intelligence to train a computer to assess wildfire damage.

Read more about the tool and Fricker's inspiration for this project.



Molly Clark

Meet Cal Poly Arts’ New Director, Molly Clark

This fall, Cal Poly Arts’ new director, Molly Clark, will begin curating a new series of performances to host for the 2022-23 academic year.

Read more about Clark's plans for the performing arts season.





Research, Scholarly and Creative Activities

Four CLA Projects Receive Research, Scholarly and Creative Activities Grants

Cal Poly’s Research, Economic Development and Graduate Education (R-EDGE) division recently awarded funds to 14 projects for the Research, Scholarly and Creative Activities (RSCA) grant’s 2021-22 cycle, four of which are from the College of Liberal Arts.

Read more about the grant awardees.



Jasna Jovanovic

Psychology Professor Named Director of University Honors Program

Psychology Professor Jasna Jovanovic has been named the new director of the University Honors Program, starting Sept. 1, 2021.

Read more about Jovanovic and her new position.





Goods and Effects by Al Schnupp

Emeritus Theatre Professor Releases Two Novellas Based on Cal Poly Plays

On May 29, two novellas by retired Cal Poly Theatre and Dance professor Al Schnupp were released.

Read more about the novellas.




Martine Lappé

Sociology professor develops new course based on epigenetic research

Over the past year, more data has arisen regarding how genomics might play a role in a person’s susceptibility to different diseases and illnesses, most notably in terms of the Coronavirus. Sociology professor Martine Lappé has been studying this phenomenon and recently developed a new course on it.

Read more about the Lappé's research.


Brady Teufel

Brady Teufel appointed new Journalism Chair and Christy Chand appointed new Theatre and Dance Chair

On March 1, it was announced that Brady Teufel was appointed as the new chair of the Journalism Department and Christy Chand was appointed as the new chair of the Theatre and Dance Department.

Read more about the new Chairs



CLA 5th Annual Teach In

CLA Hosts Fifth Annual Social Justice Teach In On February 11

Hosted by the College of Liberal Arts, the free, daylong event is made up of dozens of virtual talks and workshops centered around equity and social justice led by faculty, staff and students from across campus.

Read more about this year's virtual event.




Malcolm Keif

Graphic Communication Professor Malcolm Keif wins 'Support of Education' Award

Graphic communication professor Malcolm Keif was awarded this year’s Hartman and Dennis Support of Education Award by the Graphic Communications Education Association (GCEA) board of directors.

Read more about Keif's award.



Laura Cacciamani

Four CLA Professors Named as Faculty Fellows for Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship 

Cal Poly’s Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship has added five faculty to its interdisciplinary cohort of faculty fellows — four of them are from the CLA.

Read more about the new fellows.



Public Interest Technology University Network

Cal Poly Joins Network to Help Ensure Technology Creates Public Benefit

Cal Poly has joined the Public Interest Technology University Network (PIT-UN), a partnership that fosters collaboration between universities and colleges committed to building the nascent field of public interest technology and training a new generation of civic-minded technologists.

Read more about the network.


pandemic stories

Cal Poly Collaborative Seeks Pandemic Stories from Underrepresented Community Members

A group of Cal Poly faculty and staff members have established the Central Coast Public Humanities Collaborative to support storytelling projects that cultivate greater understanding of communities on the Central Coast, especially from those whose voices have not been heard historically.

Read more about this project.


student in Preschool Learning Lab's virtual sessions

An Incredible Experience for the Children.' How the Preschool Learning Lab Went Virtual

When the coronavirus pandemic necessitated a switch to online learning, the staff at the Preschool Learning Lab thought long and hard about how to keep the program going.

Read more about preschool online.



Read More Faculty & Staff Stories


Kim Bisheff

Ask an Expert: What Makes Online Misinformation So Dangerous — And Shareable?

Join us for a chat with Kim Bisheff, a lecturer in Cal Poly’s Journalism Department and an expert in how misinformation spreads online, for a chat about what we face, why it’s harmful — and what we can do about it.

Read more about online misinformation.



Diana Stanton

CLA Professor Diana Stanton Awarded Distinguished Scholarship Award

Cal Poly Dance Professor Diana Stanton, who has worked on various dance films and collaborative student projects, has received a Distinguished Scholarship Award for the 2019-20 year

Read more about Stanton's award



Election ballot

Ask an Expert: How Do You Vote in a Pandemic?

With a presidential election just months away and a pandemic keeping many Americans away from public spaces, the ability to vote safely and securely has become a major concern for engaged voters around the nation. 

Learn more about voting in a pandemic




Teach ON!

Teach ON! Covered Issues of Equity and Justice Surrounding COVID-19

The pandemic has magnified structural inequities — as well as strengths — that exist in our diverse communities. The 2020 Teach ON! was a series of both prerecorded and real-time virtual lectures devoted to issues of equity and justice surrounding COVID-19. 

Learn more about the Teach ON! 




Ask an Expert: What is Juneteenth?

On June 19, 1865 — two years after the Emancipation Proclamation — General George Granger, accompanied by thousands of federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas, and issued General Order No. 3, proclaiming that slavery had been outlawed across the nation and all slaves were now free. History professor Thanayi Jackson talks about the history of this holiday and what it means for the continuing fight for equality.

Learn more about Juneteenth 



'You Can Pay It Forward.' Theatre & Dance Department Creates Patterns for People to Make Their Own Masks

As the coronavirus pandemic spread through the United States and protective face coverings became the norm, costume shop manager Laina Babb of the Theatre and Dance Department spent days creating accessible patterns for students and alumni. 

Learn more about the project




Kevin Clark

Emeritus English Professor Named SLO County Poet Laureate

Emeritus English Professor Kevin Clark has been named the new San Luis Obispo County Poet Laureate. 

Learn more about Clark



Art as Activism

With More Than 30 workshops, “Inclusion Starts with Me” Teach In Sparks Conversations About Diversity and Inclusivity

Nearly 3,000 attendees participated in more than 30 workshops and talks across campus on Thursday, Feb. 13. Sessions informed and inspired students from all majors to think about diversity and inclusivity and act in their work fields and social environments.

Learn more about the Teach In


Molly Loberg

Professor Earns International Book Prize for Her Book on Post-WWI Berlin

Cal Poly History Professor Molly Loberg was recently awarded the Hans Rosenberg Book Prize for her book titled “The Struggle for the Streets of Berlin: Politics, Consumption, and Urban Space, 1914-1945.”

Learn more about Loberg's book



Jane Lehr

Jane Lehr to Serve as Founding Director of Newly Formed Office of Student Research

In her new role, Lehr will focus on increasing the transparency of access to research opportunities, supporting  professional development of both student researchers and research mentors, and increasing the submission and success of grant proposals that integrate student researchers.

Learn more about Lehr's new role


Patrick Lin

Ethics Professor Patrick Lin Joins Artificial Intelligence Task Force

Philosophy Professor Patrick Lin has joined the Task Force on Artificial Intelligence and National Security at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS), a leading think tank in Washington, D.C.

Learn more about Lin's role on the task force.



Ryan Jenkins

Philosophy Professor Awarded Grant to Study Predictive Policing

Philosophy Professor Ryan Jenkins received a grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to study the ethics of using artificial intelligence to assist police officers in anticipating crime before it happens.

Learn more about the predictive policing study



Emily Ryalls

Emily Ryalls Guest Stars in Podcast "Historians on Housewives" 

ISLA Professor Emily Ryalls was featured on a podcast from Historians on Housewives, which brings together scholars from interdisciplinary backgrounds to explain The Housewives phenomenon, and to explore how issues of race, gender, class, and sexuality can better shape understandings of history.

Learn more about the podcast


Sara Bartlett

Sara Bartlett Awarded 2018-19 Learn by Doing Scholar Award 

Sara Bartlett, a lecturer in the Psychology and Child Development Department, was awarded the 2018-19 Learn by Doing Scholar Award in the category of planned and in-progress research for "Effectiveness of Intergenerational Service Learning Programs for Psychology of Aging."

Learn more about Barlett's research


George Jercich

Shaping Glassblowing at Cal Poly 

George Jercich started the first glassblowing class at Cal Poly, which inspired the addition of a studio on campus for students to develop skills in glasswork.

Learn more about Jercich's work and influence on Cal Poly glassblowing


Adam Jarman

New Assistant Dean for Development

Adam Jarman joined the college as assistant dean for development in March. He has been a member of Cal Poly’s development team for 15 years, having served in a variety of positions.

Learn more about the new assistant dean.


Teach In session

Annual Inclusion Starts With Me Teach-In Attracts Nearly 2,000 Attendees 

As part of the university’s continuous commitment to diversity and inclusion, the third annual Inclusion Starts with Me Teach-In was held Thursday, Feb. 21.

Learn more about the Teach-In


Jay Bettergarcia

Cal Poly Researchers Assessing LGBTQ Mental Health Services in San Luis Obispo County 

The Queer Community Action, Research, Education and Support (QCARES) team, led by Cal Poly psychology Professor Jay Bettergarcia, is working to evaluate mental health services for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGTBQ+) individuals in San Luis Obispo County.

Learn more about the QCARES research


Cal Poly ART students in front of Renaissance Nude Getty Exhibit

Cal Poly Art Historians Contribute to World-touring Getty Exhibition 

Two Cal Poly art and design faculty contributed to the world-renowned touring art exhibition The Renaissance Nude, currently on display at the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles.

Learn more about the Getty exhibition


Cal Poly Professors Partner with Artificial Intelligence Pioneer to Publish Innovative Research

Cal Poly Professors Partner with Artificial Intelligence Pioneer to Publish Innovative Research 

Entrepreneurship Professor Lynn Metcalf and communication studies Professor David Askay spent the summer on the cutting edge of artificial intelligence technology in collaboration with Unanimous AI.

Learn more about their research


Julie Garcia

Julie Garcia Named Interim Associate Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion 

Julie Garcia has been serving as interim associate vice president for diversity and inclusion for the Office of University Diversity and Inclusion (OUDI) since June 29.

Learn more about Garcia's new role


Social Sciences Department Receives $5,000 Donation from PG&E for Learn By Doing

Social Sciences Department Receives $5,000 Donation from PG&E for Learn By Doing 

Two award-winning Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) employees have donated $5,000 to the Social Sciences Learn by Doing fund. 

Learn more about the donation


Eleanor Helms, Cal Poly Philosophy Associate Professor

Philosophy Associate Professor to Spend Three Months at Soren Kierkegaard Research Center

Eleanor Helms will spend three months of the 2018-19 school year researching Danish philosopher Søren Kierkegaard’s relationship to 19th century science and philosophy of science. 

Learn more about Helms's research


International Dance Festival Students in Lebanon

Dance Professor Teaches and Performs in Lebanon

Dance professor Christy Chand had the opportunity to teach dance and perform in Lebanon at the International Dance Day Festival in April. 

Learn more about the International Dance Day Festival


Hip Hop Exhibit in Kennedy Library

Ethnic Studies Course Highlights Hip Hop History and Creates Important Dialogue

Hip hop studies is an emerging field in academia, and Professor Jenell Navarro has increased its prevalence at Cal Poly. 

Learn more about hip hop studies


President's Diversity Awards plaque

Three 2018 President's Diversity Awards Recipients from CLA 

Three of the 2018 President's Diversity Award recipients were from the College of Liberal Arts: Dean Douglas Epperson, Associate Dean Jennifer Teramoto Pedrotti and ethnic studies student Leilani Hemmings. 

Learn more about the 2018 diversity awards


Julie Spencer-Rodgers

Julie Spencer-Rodgers Recognized as 2017-18 Learn by Doing Scholar Award Recipient

Julie Spencer-Rodgers was awarded the 2017-18 Learn by Doing Scholar Award in the category of planned and in-progress research for “Building Intercultural Competence Through Cultural Immersion Projects.”  

Learn more about the Learn by Doing Scholar Award


Brady Teufel, Cal Poly Journalism professor and educator of the year

Brady Teufel Recognized as Journalism Educator of the Year

The California Journalism and Media Affiliates recently named Brady Teufel, Cal Poly Journalism Department assistant chair and associate professor, as the 2018 Journalism Educator of the Year — Four-Year Division. 

Learn more about Teufel's award


Cal Poly Professor Coleen CarriganProfessor Coleen Carrigan Wins Prestigious National Science Foundation CAREER Award

Professor Coleen Carrigan received a Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Award from the National Science Foundation — one of NSF’s most prestigious awards.

Read more about Carrigan's award


Cal Poly Dance Program at American College Dance ConferenceCal Poly Dance Program Honored at American College Dance Association Conference

A dance choreographed by dance Professor Christy McNeil Chand was selected as the opener for the closing gala of the American College Dance Association regional conference in Tempe, Arizona.

Read more about the dance program


Cal Poly LAES K Street Passageway

LAES Pedestrian Passageway Project Receives Grant

Liberal arts and engineering studies (LAES) Professor David Gillette, along with architecture Professor Thomas Fowler, received the Hearst Foundation Award for Scholarship in Education for their K Street Passageway project. 

Learn more about the passageway project


The Bishop Peak Portrait Project

Professor's Photos Capture 365 Days of Bishop Peak

Graphic communication professor Brian Lawler captured 365 days of Bishop Peak in a photo series inspired by his daily bicycle commute. The display will be permanently housed in the Warren J. Baker Center for Science and Mathematics (No. 180).

Learn more about the photos on display


Jennifer Teramoto Pedrotti, CLA Associate Dean for Diversity and Curriculum

CLA Associate Dean for Diversity and Curriculum Featured in Cal Poly Magazine's "My 2017"

Jennifer Teramoto Pedrotti, associate dean for diversity and curriculum in the College of Liberal Arts talked with psychology senior and CLA Student Diversity Committee member Marcos Ramirez-Santos about diversity initiatives that are shaping campus.    

Watch the video of their conversation


Jason Peters, Cal Poly English professorCal Poly English and Agriculture Professors Win USDA Grant

English Professor Jason Peters and Yiwen Chiu, a professor in Cal Poly’s Natural Resources Management and Environmental Sciences Department, have been awarded a $140,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture.

Read more about the USDA grant award


Modern Languages and Literatures Department Gets New NameModern Languages and Literatures Department Gets New Name

In fall 2017, the department officially changed its name to World Languages and Cultures to adapt to current changes and trends among language departments in universities across the country.

Read more about the new department name



Modern Languages and Literatures Department Gets New NameCal Poly College of Liberal Arts Dean to Retire

Cal Poly today announced that Doug Epperson, dean of the College of Liberal Arts, will retire in August 2018. Epperson has been the dean of Cal Poly's College of Liberal Arts since 2012.

Read more about Dean Epperson's retirement



Laura Krifka Cal Poly Art and Design

Art and Design Lecturer Receives Teacher-Artist Grant

Laura Krifka from the Art and Design Department received the 2017 Artist-Teacher Grant from the Davyd Whaley Foundation to help her direct more time to her studio work.   

Read more about the Krifka's grant award 


Catherine Waitinas, Cal Poly 2017 Learn by Doing Scholar

English Faculty Member Earns 2017 Learn by Doing Scholar Award

Catherine Waitinas, an associate professor in the English Department, earned the 2017 Learn by Doing Scholar Award.   

Read more about the Learn by Doing Award


Cal Poly CLA Librarian

Students Hone Research Skills with Help from College Librarians

Kennedy Library offers a variety of resources for students to use, including the one-on-one guidance from expert librarians.  

Read more about college librarians


Martin Mehl Receives Effective Practice Award

COMS Lecturer Receives Effective Practice Award

Martin Mehl, senior lecturer in communications studies, along with Luanne Fose from the Cal Poly Center for Teaching, Learning & Technology, were officially recognized with the Online Learning Consortium’s (OLC) 2017 Effective Practice Award for their digital mentorship pedagogy.  

Read more about Mehl's Effective Practice Award


Davies Retires

Beloved Music Professor Retires After 34 Years

After 34 years at Cal Poly, Thomas Davies, beloved member of the Music Department, retired in June 2017. 

Read more about Davies


Kathleen Murphy

History Professors and M.A. Student Awarded Fellowships

History Department professors Sarah Bridger and Kathleen Murphy and M.A. student Crystal Smith were recently awarded fellowships.  

Read more about the fellowships


Latner Receives Voting Rights Fellowship

Political Science Professor Receives Voting Rights Fellowship

The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), the nation's leading science-based policy advocacy organization, has awarded associate professor of political science Michael Latner its Voting Rights Kendall Fellowship. 

Read more about Latner's fellowship

Bittick Named Journalism Educator of the Year

Paul Bittick Recognized as Journalism Educator of the Year

The California Journalism & Media Affiliates recently named Paul Bittick, Cal Poly’s Mustang Media Group general manager, as the 2017 Journalism Educator of the Year in the 4-Year Division. 

Read more about Paul Bittick's award


Professor Receives NSF Award

Professor Awarded NSF Grant to Host Data Science Workshop

Brian Beaton, director of the Center for Expressive Technology, was awarded nearly $25,000 from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to host a two-day workshop entitled "Social Facets of Data Science." 

Read more about Data Science's Impact at Cal Poly 


Professor, Students Conduct Research in Peru on Improved Biomass Cookstoves

Professor, Students Conduct Research in Peru on Improved Biomass Cookstoves

Cal Poly Geography Professor James Keese and students traveled to Peru in March 2016 to conduct a follow-up study on a clean-burning cookstoves project.

Read about Improved Biomass Cookstoves



English Professor Lisa Coffman's Poem Read on National Radio ShowEnglish Professor’s Poem Read on National Radio Show

Adjunct Professor of English Lisa Coffman’s poem “Everybody Made Soups” was recently read on The Writer’s Almanac with Garrison Keillor. 

Read about Lisa Coffman’s Poem on NPR

Visiting Professor, Gilda Ochoa, with students

Visiting Professor Examines Diversity and Education at Cal Poly

During her time in Cal Poly’s Ethnic Studies Department in winter 2016, Visiting Professor Gilda L. Ochoa encouraged students to look at existing educational systems through a lens of racial and cultural sensitivity.

Read more about Gilda Ochoa's visit to Cal Poly

Generous donation to preserve printing history

Cal Poly Graphic Communication Receives $2.3 Million to Preserve Printing Industry History

Well-known printing industry expert Raymond J. Prince has donated $2.3 million to Cal Poly’s Graphic Communication Department to preserve the history and knowledge of the printing and imaging industry.

Read about the generous donation

 Michael Miller

Remembering a Giant: Michael Barton Miller

Michael Barton Miller — Art & Design Department professor, artist and friend — passed away Friday, Nov. 14, 2014, at the age of 65, after a two-year battle with brain cancer. His wisdom, humor, kindness and love for different people and cultures touched the lives of all he encountered.

Read more about Michael Barton Miller

English Professor Brings Dramatic Literature Back to Campus

English Professor Brings Dramatic Literature Back to Campus 

“My mother tongue is performance,” said Ryan Hatch, one of the newest additions to Cal Poly’s English Department faculty. A self-described lover and critic of the theater, Hatch has known for a long time that the art of performance would be at the center of his intellectual and scholarly work.

Read more about Ryan Hatch

WSECS Program Brochure

WSECS Conference 

Cal Poly's College of Liberal Arts welcomed one of the most prestigious 18th-Century conferences early this year. The Western Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (WSECS) Conference gathered scholars from across the world to share their research.

Read more about the WSECS Conference

Professor oversees French Advanced Placement Tests

Cal Poly Professor to Oversee French Advanced Placement Exams 

Brian G. Kennelly, Cal Poly professor in the Modern Languages & Literatures Department, was named the 2015-16 chief reader designate by the College Board to oversee the French Language and Culture Advanced Placement exams.

Read more about this achievement

Middle school technology arts program launched

Cal Poly Center for Arts Education, YMCA Launch Middle School Technology Arts Program

CCCAE is committing $10,000 to help start a Y.I. in San Luis Obispo to teach students the basics of graphic design and how to create films and produce magazines. The program will begin this summer for sixth- through eighth-grade students.

Read more about the technology arts program

Hopper to study at Institute for Advanced Study

Cal Poly History Professor Selected at Scholar Institute for Advanced Study 

Cal Poly History Professor Matthew Hopper was selected as a fall 2015 scholar at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, N.J. as well as the Cambridge Visiting Research Fellow.

Read more about the Institute for Advanced Study and Cambridge Visiting Research Fellow

Cal Poly professor awarded Fulbright

Cal Poly English Professor Emeritus Awarded Fulbright to Teach in Bulgaria 

Cal Poly English Professor Emeritus Carol MacCurdy was selected to receive a 2015-16 Fulbright Award which offers scholars the opportunity to research and teach in a variety of disciplines in more than 155 countries

Read more about the Fulbright Award 

Psychology professor awarded STEM research grant

Cal Poly Psychology Professor Receives $100,000 STEM Research Grant

Cal Poly psychology Professor Julie Garcia received a $100,000 grant for the project “Identity Threats in Higher Education: Implications for College Outcomes of Under-Represented Students of Color.”

Read more about the STEM research grant


Professor writes book

Cal Poly History Professor Releases New Book ‘Scientists at War’

Cal Poly History Professor Sarah Bridger released her latest book, “Scientists at War: The Ethics of Cold War Weapons Research.” 

Read more about this book

professor awarded NSF grant

Professor Awarded $152,000 NSF Grant for Research of Connections Between Slavery and Science  

Cal Poly History Professor Kathleen Murphy received National Science Foundation grant for more than $152,000 for her project “Exploring the Use of British Slave Trade Ships to Gather Biological Specimens and Data.”

Read more about the NSF grant

Professor in Residence

English Professor Named the 2015 CSU Bakersfield Writer in Residence  

Cal Poly English Professor and author John Hampsey has been named the 2015 CSU Bakersfield (CSUB) Stiern Library PG&E Writer in Residence. As part of the writer-in-residence program, Hampsey will deliver a reading for the CSUB university community.

Read more about the writer in residence program

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