Christa Lam / Mustang News

The week before Thanksgiving break, a team of six students brought a display to Dexter Lawn to raise awareness about the prevalence of school shootings across the nation.

Constructed of six laser-cut panels set in wood framing, the exhibit featured an interactive display with quotes and year-to-year statistics on gun violence.

“We’re not trying to push anyone, like ‘no guns,’ or anything like that, we just want to come up with a solution,” architecture sophomore and team member Melina van Oers said.

Liberal arts and engineering studies and architecture students collaborated on this project, titled “SOS” or “Sense Of Safety,” for their Project-Based Learning in Liberal Arts and Engineering Studies class (LAES 301/302).

“Our assignment was to create a booth that is interactive and informs people about the number of school shootings in the United States,” liberal arts and engineering studies senior Will Lewis said.

The designers conveyed the data by creating holes perforating the individual panels, each hole equivalent to two school shootings that have occurred in the United States.

Liberal arts and engineering studies sophomore Kevin Glass added that the infographic was “also meant to gather an opinion of people based on their demographic on how safe they feel at Cal Poly’s campus.”

Students could silently add to the discussion by adding their fingerprint in paint on the panel that represented how safe they felt on campus. Different colors of paint corresponded with the participants’ respective years at Cal Poly.

Business administration freshman Brittany Pedrosa said that, though it was creatively designed and pertinent to societal concerns, the display did not allow for the diversity of perspectives on the issue.

“It doesn’t really show every group, in terms of race, minorities, sexual orientation … and I think that’s something that could definitely be shown. If you’re a certain race, you feel a different way,” Pedrosa said.

The team has been working on this assignment since the beginning of the quarter. They hope that its design and simple construction— the collapsible display takes only 20  minutes to set up— will capture the attention of other universities.

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