Cougars and Mustangs is a weekly column that attempts to shine a lighthearted and humorous spotlight on the Central Coast colleges’ achievements, mishaps, and upcoming events. However, nothing is funny about this next topic.
Cal Poly President Jeffrey Armstrong sent a message regarding two recent occurrences of sexual assault (an alleged rape at a Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity party on May 7 and a second alleged rape at Poly Canyon Village on May 12). Excerpts of the president’s message include: “A large number of Cal Poly students attended the party; many drank to reckless excess, and many were under age. Second only to the victim’s suffering, the most disturbing aspect of the May 7th incident is that some Cal Poly students knew what occurred at the party, failed to stop or report what they saw, and failed to keep each other safe. … Our primary goal now is to be a community that knows how to be respectful, healthy, and safe.”
In other news, KCPR will be holding its annual fundraising pledge drive on May 23 through May 29. KCPR is a student run, nonprofit radio station that’s been keeping listeners dialed in since 1968. Community members are encouraged to tune their radios to 91.3 FM to pledge their support for the station.
Cal Poly professors and students will launch a kayak for disabled users at Tidelands Park in Morro Bay on May 20. The SoloQuad is an adaptive kayak designed for a pilot with quadriplegia or paraplegia. This project is a collaborative effort involving undergraduate students from the Cal Poly Kinesiology and Computer Engineering departments.
In keeping with the helping-those-in-need genre, Cal Poly is once again partaking in PolyHouse—a spring tradition of renovating the home of a physically disabled, financially disadvantaged family or individual to improve quality of life. This year, the selected client is a family with a 16-year-old disabled son who was born with a severe form of Spina Bifida and has been confined to a wheelchair since the age of 2. Unlike most academic projects, PolyHouse isn’t funded by the university.
While Cal Poly’s engineering department garners a majority of the achievements and recognition, the university’s city and regional planning department’s graduate program was recently ranked No. 1 nationally of all programs without a Ph.D., according to Planetizen.
Over at Cuesta College, a pair of students received the Frederick G. Novy History Award that recognizes the school’s most promising history scholars. Janessa Lowden of San Luis Obispo and Zach Moller of Shell Beach, both 21, received the 21st Novy Awards, which included a $250 prize for each history student.
Kai Beech compiled this week’s column. Send your collegiate news to CougarsandMustangs@newtimesslo.com.