Cal Poly Rose Float won the Animation Award at the 133rd Rose Parade Celebration on New Year’s Day in Pasadena, California. 

This is the first time the team has received this award since 1984, according to a Cal Poly press release.

Cal Poly President Jeffery Armstrong, who attended this year’s parade, said the float is an example of Learn By Doing in action and an inspiration to people who see it.

“Students from all six of our colleges come together to brainstorm ideas, then tackle engineering challenges to make the float come to life, all topped by an artist’s palette of colorful blooms,” Armstrong said in the press release.   

This team is a joint effort between Cal Poly Pomona and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo universities to enter a student-designed float in the annual parade. Since joining the parade in 1949, this combined effort has allowed the team to win 61 different awards. 

More than 80 students from both universities worked to finish the float during the COVID-19 pandemic and last year’s parade hiatus, according to the press release.

Cal Poly Rose Float president and computer engineering senior Regina Chapuis said this is the first time student float leaders who initiated the project needed to hand it down to a new group of student leaders.

Chapuis has been a part of the team since her freshman year and held various executive positions before becoming president her senior year.

“It was very important to me that there was a solid leadership going into this year so that I could pass on what I know before I graduate,” Chapuis said.

Despite the two-year gap and new student leaders, Chapuis and her team got an offer from Downtown San Luis Obispo to help with a seasonal lights display in Mission Plaza. This month-long project allowed the new team to practice building techniques and understand the intricacies of building a large parade float. 

Cal Poly officials stated this year’s float aimed to showcase the parade’s 2022 theme “Dream. Believe. Achieve.” — a celebration of education’s ability to open doors and change lives. 

The float, taking inspiration from the “Hey Diddle Diddle” nursery rhyme, featured an 18-by-55 foot animatronic display of a cow flying over the moon with a jetpack. 

The float includes a tribute to Cal Poly alumnus John Madden, who died Dec. 28, during the team’s design week. 

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *