Jay Thompson | Courtesy Photo

In honor of Phil Bailey, founder of Cal Poly’s “Study 25-35 Hours Per Week” principle, a student-designed art installation is now a permanent addition to the second-floor lobby of the Warren J. Baker Center for Science and Mathematics (building 180).

Art and design senior Anna Teiche crafted her “25-35” art piece in commission to honor former College of Science and Mathematics dean Bailey. Bailey championed the idea that in order to succeed, students need to study two hours per unit per week. Bailey spent 20 years working on the development of building 180 and the students it serves. Though he would have valued any form of recognition by the university, Bailey said it was extremely touching to have a Cal Poly student turn his academic principle into a work of art.

“The whole thing was a surprise to me. They kept it a secret,” Bailey said. “It was very meaningful because I’ve always cared about student success and all of our students.”

Bailey (left) with Teiche (right) in front of the new art installation. Hannah Travis | Courtesy Photo

Teiche’s work is a visual representation of an average student’s day according to the “25-35” principle. Seven hexagonal panels symbolize each day in a week, while the hours of the day are represented by 24 smaller, colorfully painted hexagons placed on each panel. Inspired by molecular diagrams used in chemistry, the geometric forms act as a comparison between chemical compounds and student activity. Just as chemical compounds can be broken down into distinct elements, a student’s day can be organized into different areas of focus.

“When I think of 25-35 hours it just reminds me that I’m here to be a student. It just reinforces the ideas of commitment and balancing my time. That’s something that I struggle with, is figuring out where to put my time,” psychology junior Adam Simon said.  

Teiche fabricated her work by securing different tools offered by an array of on-campus resources and labs. With the help of Equipment Technician Doug Brewster and fellow art and design student Tommy Stoeckinger, Teiche learned how to tungsten inert gas (TIG) weld her metal hexagons.

“This experience has allowed me to put my major and everything I’ve worked for into practice in a very concrete way,” Teiche said.

While some may have found learning to TIG weld intimidating, Teiche described the experience as exciting. She said the most satisfying part was knowing that the design came together and she pleased the person she was trying to honor.

After 48 years of service at Cal Poly, Bailey retired at the end of the 2016-17 academic year. He is the current director of the  College of Science and Mathematics undergraduate research program.

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