Cal Poly students are also members of the San Luis Obispo community.
It is easy for students to associate themselves as Cal Poly Mustangs, but they are a part of a population that extend far greater than just the Cal Poly campus.
Graduate student Blanca Lopez said she never saw herself as separate from the community.
“Whether I go downtown for Farmers’ Market or if I go to other city events, I always feel like a member of the San Luis Obispo community,” Lopez said. “I attend multicultural events here that make me feel like a part of the community.”
As students, we have to maintain a level of respect for our surroundings, Lopez said.
“There shouldn’t be a surprise if there is noise and partying going on though,” she said. “People in the community cannot pretend that there isn’t a campus here; they should be aware that they live where there is a lot of traffic and noise that comes with living by a college campus.”
Mechanical engineering freshman Jeron Hogan said he also considers himself a member of the San Luis Obispo community.
“Everywhere you go, people are welcoming of students, people seem excited for new students,” Hogan said.
Since this is a college town, the noise levels are going to be high, especially on weekends, he said.
“It’s us exploring our freedom in a somewhat wild manner,” Hogan said. “But we should show respect to those around us, no matter what.”
Hogan had an idea of his own to provide a balance between the wants of students and community members in San Luis Obispo.
“Maybe there could be some sort of law so students and community members could come to an agreement, like a certain music decibel level on specific nights of the week,” he said.
Students feel welcomed by San Luis Obispo, but some community members may be concerned with the choice of college students’ lifestyles.
San Luis Obispo Public Works Director Daryl Grigsby said members of the community are concerned about the students’ impact on the quality of life of the city.
“The dichotomy that a lot of us feel is that this generation parties more than previous ones,” Grigsby said. “We forget that we used to party too. Students are young and having fun and that shouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing.”
If students could see themselves as a part of the community it would be beneficial, Grigsby said.
“Students are part of the community in more ways than they realize,” Grigsby said.
If students would take that extra step to be a good neighbor, he said, it would help people in the community see a good side to the college population.
“Look at all the benefits the Cal Poly student population has on the city,” he said. “Community members need to realize that San Luis Obispo wouldn’t be the same without Cal Poly; students bring a youthful energy that makes the town more vibrant.”
One specific example is our transit system. The bus system wouldn’t be possible without the students of San Luis Obispo, he said.
“San Luis Obispo without Cal Poly wouldn’t be the same and Cal Poly without San Luis Obispo wouldn’t be the same,” Grigsby said. “It is not just Cal Poly. It is not just San Luis Obispo — it is one.”