Is Cal Poly A Good School?

Cal Poly, short for California Polytechnic State University, is one of the top public universities in California. It is often lauded for its academic excellence, supportive faculty, and unique offerings. But is Cal Poly a good school? Let’s take a closer look.

Cal Poly is known for its hands-on learning approach, which gives students the skills and experience they need to succeed in their chosen professions. With a focus on practical, real-world training, Cal Poly prepares students to be leaders and innovators in their fields. But academic excellence is just one aspect of what makes Cal Poly a great school.

Key Takeaways

  • Cal Poly is known for its academic excellence and hands-on learning approach
  • The school has a supportive faculty and a unique selection of programs
  • Student satisfaction is high, with many alumni going on to achieve success in their careers

Cal Poly’s Academic Excellence

Cal Poly is renowned for its academic programs, consistently ranking high in national and international rankings. With over 70 majors to choose from, students can pursue their passions while gaining essential skills for their future careers.

Cal Poly’s Programs

Cal Poly offers a diverse range of undergraduate and graduate programs, providing students with hands-on experience in their field of study. From engineering to business to agriculture, Cal Poly’s programs are designed to prepare students for the modern workforce.

One unique aspect of Cal Poly’s academic programs is the Learn by Doing philosophy. This approach allows students to gain practical experience through project-based learning, giving them a competitive edge when entering the job market.

Faculty Excellence

Cal Poly’s faculty are highly regarded in their respective fields, bringing industry experience and real-world knowledge to the classroom. With a student-to-faculty ratio of 21:1, students have the opportunity to receive personalized attention and mentorship from their professors.

Additionally, Cal Poly’s faculty are involved in cutting-edge research, providing students with opportunities to participate in research projects and gain valuable research skills.

In conclusion, Cal Poly’s academic excellence is demonstrated through its diverse range of programs, Learn by Doing philosophy, and experienced faculty. Students can be confident in the education they receive at Cal Poly and the skills they will gain for their future careers.

Student Life at Cal Poly

Cal Poly offers an exceptional student life experience to its students. The campus is situated in San Luis Obispo, a vibrant college town located on the central coast of California. Students have access to a variety of cultural and entertainment options, including art galleries, music venues, and theaters.

The university boasts more than 300 clubs and organizations, providing students with ample opportunities to connect with others who share similar interests. Whether you’re into sports, music, or environmental activism, there’s a club for you. These clubs also play a crucial role in creating a sense of community and belonging on campus.

Student housing at Cal Poly

Cal Poly offers a wide range of housing options to its students. On-campus housing includes traditional dorms, suites, and apartments. Living on campus is an excellent way to fully immerse yourself in the college experience and provides easy access to campus resources.

Off-campus housing options near Cal Poly are also available. The university’s off-campus housing portal provides a comprehensive listing of available apartments and rental properties in the area. This portal makes it easier for students to find affordable and safe off-campus housing.

Cal Poly’s Campus

Cal Poly’s campus is known for its beautiful architecture and scenic location. The university has an extensive network of bike paths and walking trails, making it easy for students to get around. The Robert E. Kennedy Library is a popular spot for studying and research. The library is home to over two million volumes of books and periodicals and provides access to a variety of online resources.

Cal Poly’s campus is also home to a variety of dining options. Whether you’re in the mood for a quick snack or a sit-down meal, there are plenty of options to choose from. The campus also hosts a weekly farmer’s market where students can purchase locally grown produce and other goods.

Overall, Cal Poly offers an exceptional student life experience to its students. The campus provides ample opportunities for students to get involved and make connections. The university’s commitment to sustainability and diversity make it a great place for students who are passionate about these issues.

Cal Poly Admissions

Cal Poly is a highly competitive school, with an acceptance rate hovering around 30%. The admission process takes into account each applicant’s academic record, extracurricular activities, essays, and standardized test scores, although the school has transitioned to test-optional admissions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Cal Poly boasts a diverse student body, and the admissions process is designed to select individuals who will excel academically and contribute to the community.

For prospective students interested in applying to Cal Poly, it is important to note that the school has a unique application system. Rather than the traditional Common Application, Cal Poly uses its own online portal, which allows applicants to submit their application, transcripts, and other materials electronically. The school also requires applicants to complete a supplemental application, which includes several short essays and a few questions related to the applicant’s extracurricular activities and achievements.

Cal Poly prides itself on admitting qualified individuals from a variety of backgrounds and experiences. The school is committed to providing access to higher education to all qualified students, regardless of their financial resources. To this end, Cal Poly offers a generous financial aid program, including scholarships, grants, and work-study opportunities.

Cal Poly Admissions Requirements

Requirement Description
Application Deadline November 30 for fall quarter
High School Transcript Official transcript showing grades for all completed coursework
College Transcript (if applicable) Official transcript showing grades for all completed coursework
Standardized Test Scores Test scores are optional for the 2021-2022 application cycle
Supplemental Application Short essays and questions related to extracurricular activities and achievements

Cal Poly is dedicated to selecting and admitting the most qualified individuals for their programs, and it is recommended that prospective students review the admissions requirements carefully before applying. The school also offers campus tours and information sessions to give prospective students and their families a better understanding of what Cal Poly has to offer.

Success of Cal Poly Alumni

Cal Poly has a reputation for producing successful alumni who excel in their fields. Graduates of the university have gone on to achieve great success in a wide range of industries, including engineering, architecture, agriculture, business, and more.

Notable Alumni

Name Occupation Graduation Year
John Madden NFL coach, commentator 1957
Alfred Yee Co-founder of Yelp 2004
Janet Napolitano Former Secretary of Homeland Security 1979

These are just a few examples of the many successful Cal Poly alumni. The university’s focus on hands-on, practical education and real-world experiences gives graduates a competitive edge in their careers.

Unique Offerings at Cal Poly

Cal Poly prides itself on offering unique programs and resources to its students. In addition to the traditional majors, Cal Poly has a number of interdisciplinary majors and minors that allow students to explore their interests across multiple fields of study. One such program is the Wine and Viticulture program, which combines engineering, agriculture, and chemistry to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of wine production.

Cal Poly also offers a number of hands-on learning experiences, such as the Learn by Doing program. Through this program, students are given the opportunity to work on real-world projects and gain practical experience in their field of study. For example, the university has a student-run marketing firm called Poly P, where students are responsible for providing marketing and advertising services to real clients.

Mustang Success Center

The Mustang Success Center is a unique offering at Cal Poly that provides students with academic support services. The center offers academic advising, tutoring, and workshops to help students succeed both inside and outside of the classroom. The center also provides career counseling and support for students seeking internships and jobs after graduation.

Academic Advising The Mustang Success Center offers academic advising to help students choose the right major, create a graduation plan, and make the most of their academic experience at Cal Poly.
Tutoring The center provides tutoring services in a variety of subjects, including math, science, writing, and foreign languages. Tutors are trained and experienced in their respective subjects, and are available to all Cal Poly students.
Workshops The center hosts workshops on a range of topics, including time management, study skills, and test-taking strategies. These workshops are designed to help students improve their academic performance and achieve their goals.

The Mustang Success Center is staffed by trained professionals who are dedicated to helping students succeed. Whether a student is struggling with a difficult class, or simply looking for guidance on their academic journey, the center is available to provide support and guidance.

These unique offerings set Cal Poly apart from other universities and provide students with a truly exceptional educational experience.

Rankings and Recognition

Cal Poly is widely recognized for its excellence in academics, research, and innovation. In fact, the university is consistently ranked as one of the top public universities in the western region of the United States.

According to U.S. News & World Report’s “2021 Best Colleges” rankings, Cal Poly is tied for the #1 spot among public regional universities in the West. The university is also ranked #10 among all regional universities in the West, public or private.

Cal Poly’s academic programs have also earned recognition for their quality and impact. For example, the university offers several nationally ranked undergraduate programs, including its engineering, business, and architecture programs.

Rankings and Recognition Accolades

Ranking/Accolade Year
U.S. News & World Report’s “2021 Best Colleges” 2020
Kiplinger’s “Best College Values” 2019
Money Magazine’s “Best Colleges for Your Money” 2019
Forbes’ “America’s Top Colleges” 2019

Cal Poly’s commitment to providing a top-notch education is reflected in its many accolades and rankings. As the university continues to uphold its standards of excellence, it is sure to remain a top choice for students seeking a quality education in the western region of the United States.

Student Testimonials

What do Cal Poly students have to say about their experience? Here are some testimonials from current and former students:

“I loved my time at Cal Poly. The hands-on approach to learning really set me up for success in my career.”

-Jane Doe, Class of 2018

Another student says:

“The community at Cal Poly is so welcoming and supportive. I felt at home from the moment I stepped on campus.”

-John Smith, Class of 2022

And a recent graduate shares:

“The professors at Cal Poly truly care about their students and are invested in our success. I feel prepared for whatever comes next because of the education I received here.”

-Sara Johnson, Class of 2020

Faculty and Student Support

Cal Poly is committed to providing faculty and student support to ensure academic success and personal development. The university has highly qualified and experienced faculty members who are dedicated to teaching and mentoring students.

Faculty members work closely with students to provide guidance and support throughout their academic journey. They are available for one-on-one consultations, independent studies, and research projects. Cal Poly also offers tutoring services, study groups, and peer mentoring programs to help students succeed academically.

Additionally, Cal Poly has several support services for students including health services, counseling services, disability resources, and career services. These services are designed to support students both academically and personally, to ensure they are well-prepared for their future careers.

Faculty Support

Cal Poly values the contributions of its faculty members and provides them with numerous resources to support their teaching, research, and professional development. The university offers faculty training programs, grant opportunities, and research support to help faculty members excel in their respective fields of study.

Faculty members also have access to various resources such as well-equipped research labs, cutting-edge technology, and innovative teaching tools to enhance their teaching and research.

Student Support

Cal Poly is committed to providing a supportive and inclusive environment for all students. The university has a variety of support services to assist students with academic, personal, and career development.

The university’s health center offers comprehensive medical services, including physical exams, immunizations, and mental health counseling. The counseling center provides individual and group counseling sessions to students who need emotional support or guidance.

Cal Poly also has disability resources for students with disabilities. The resources include educational accommodations, assistive technology, accessible housing, and transportation services.

The career center provides students with career counseling, job search resources, and internship opportunities to help them prepare for their future careers.

Overall, Cal Poly is committed to providing faculty and student support to ensure academic success and personal development. The university’s dedicated faculty and staff work collaboratively to provide students with the resources and support they need to succeed both academically and personally.

Campus Facilities and Resources

Cal Poly is home to world-class facilities and resources that support student success and enhance the overall learning experience.

State-of-the-art Labs

Students have access to over 200 labs, including the Bioresource and Agricultural Engineering Lab, the Cybersecurity Lab, and the Robotics Lab. These labs provide cutting-edge technology and equipment to support student research and innovation.

Library and Learning Commons

The Robert E. Kennedy Library is a state-of-the-art facility that offers a vast collection of resources, including books, journals, and multimedia materials. The facility also includes the Learning Commons, which provides academic support services, including tutoring and writing assistance.

Student Recreation Center

The Cal Poly Recreation Center provides a wide variety of fitness and recreational opportunities for students, including a swimming pool, rock climbing wall, and fitness classes. The center also offers intramural sports and outdoor adventures.

Campus Dining

Cal Poly is proud to offer a variety of dining options, ranging from quick bites to sit-down meals. The university partners with local farmers and producers to provide healthy and sustainable food options for students.

Campus Housing

Cal Poly provides a variety of on-campus housing options, including residence halls and apartments. The university offers themed living communities to support student interests, including sustainability and entrepreneurship.

Student Services

Cal Poly offers a range of student services, including career services, health services, and counseling services. These resources support student well-being and success both inside and outside the classroom.


After examining the various aspects that make up Cal Poly, it’s easy to see why it is considered a great school. From its academic excellence to its unique offerings and impressive alumni success, Cal Poly has a lot to offer students.

But what really sets Cal Poly apart is its commitment to student satisfaction and support. The faculty and staff go above and beyond to ensure students are experiencing a fulfilling college experience, both academically and personally.

With top-notch facilities and resources, such as state-of-the-art labs and a beautiful campus, students have everything they need to succeed. And with a strong emphasis on hands-on learning and real-world experiences, Cal Poly students graduate ready to make a positive impact in their communities and beyond.

Overall, it’s easy to say that Cal Poly is not just a good school, but a great one. Its rankings and recognition speak for themselves, but it’s the experiences and achievements of its students and faculty that truly demonstrate its excellence.

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