During the last four years, campus has grown to fit the needs of students. Consequently, it looks a lot different than it did when this year’s graduating seniors were freshmen. From new food options to major shifts in housing, here’s how Cal Poly changed during the last few years.
The most obvious change was the removal of Vista Grande Cafe, but that’s not the only way Campus Dining changed since the class of 2017 students were freshmen.
“Cal Poly switched from meal plans to Plu$ dollars only, which I feel like was way better than what we had,” political science senior Hannah Quitugua said.
Because of this change, Cal Poly dining venues are no longer packed with desperate students Friday nights trying to use their meals before they would restart and go to waste at the end of the week.
In addition to these changes, Campus Dining added new options. In 2014, Red Radish was added, and this year Bishop’s Burger, Pico’s and Zen Bowl were added to The Avenue. Also new this year ar three food trucks: Starbucks, Central Coaster and Curbside Grill.
Until this year, Cal Poly was a dry campus. But with the 2016 remodel of Mustang Station, formerly known as Ciao, came the option for anyone 21-and-older to purchase beer and wine on campus. Not only is this a change in Campus Dining, it is also a change in the overall atmosphere of campus. While dining on campus used to be an area where one would generally find freshmen with Plu$ dollars, now students of all ages hang out at Mustang Station.
In 2013, Poly Canyon Village (PCV) began to offer open-gender housing, in which one could live with people of different genders. This year, gender inclusive housing was offered, allowing students of all gender identities to have their choice of roommate arrangements. Due to larger classes coming in, many dorms have been converted to fit more students over the years. Because of this, new freshman housing is being constructed at the front of campus in hopes to make PCV and Cerro Vista continued-student housing once again. Though these dorms — Yakʔitʸutʸu — won’t be ready until 2018, they have already impacted campus in many ways, the biggest way being the parking they took away.
Not only was parking considered one of the biggest changes on campus, it was also brought up by multiple students as something that could use the most improvement.
“I have a huge issue with the parking,” physics senior Jessica Pilgram said. “There is not enough for all the students that drive to campus and they should have given us more parking.“
The problem is the recent closure of a large general parking lot on Grand Avenue, G1, that is now used to construct the new Yakʔitʸutʸu freshmen housing. This change also means freshmen will no longer be allowed to bring cars.
Some of the Class of 2017 even witnessed the opening of the Recreation Center expansion. The construction began in 2009, and the expanded Recreation Center opened in January 2012.
“When I was a first year the Rec Center had just opened for the first time,” dairy science senior Alice Jang said.
Totaling about 21,000 square feet, the new and improved Recreation Center was a major change to campus. The amount of space tripled, group exercise classes began to be offered at no additional charge and the locker rooms got a makeover.
A lot changed on campus since this year’s graduating seniors were freshmen. With changes always being made, it will be interesting to see what campus looks like in another four years.