Editor’s Note: Answers to questions that time constraints prohibited the presidents, as well as staff, from answering are provided in a separate post.
From issues involving food waste to navigating around the campus amid construction projects, the fall quarter Pizza with the Presidents offered students both a free lunch and food for thought.
University President Soraya M. Coley greeted hundreds of students in the Quad for the Nov. 1 question-and-answer session.
Regarding the university’s efforts to curb food waste, the president asked Paul Storey, executive director of the Cal Poly Pomona Foundation, to address the situation. Storey said that dining services has been working with the Los Olivos dining hall for the last three years to recycle food waste. He said that the effort has expanded to The Collins College of Hospitality Management and he is also looking to get Kellogg West and Starbucks on board.
That question transitioned into a discussion about food insecurity, which has gained heightened awareness in the 23-campus CSU system. A study released in late February found that 24 percent of the CSU’s 460,000 students may be affected.
“We want to have a climate at Cal Poly Pomona where you don’t feel insecure, where you don’t feel apologetic or embarrassed by coming forward.” Coley said. “You are part of the Bronco family and what family does is to respond to the best of their ability to the needs that are presented by members of the family.”
Lea Jarnagin, vice president for student affairs, encouraged students to participate in an upcoming email survey about their food insecurities. Uriah Sanders, president of Associated Students Inc., encouraged students to submit ideas about sustainability to ASI.
Concern surfaced over potential delays and additional classes needed by students to graduate before semester conversion initiates in fall 2018.
Coley assured students that the university is working toward a seamless transition, including the MyPlanner and IAP tools that will help students plan their courses to graduation and help the colleges meet course demand.
Summer session will be a key part of helping students graduate before fall 2018 and move seamlessly through the transition. Tuition was lowered and class offerings expanded in the last summer session.
“We expect to continue to have robust summer school because we want to make sure that students have that road map that really helps them move through the curriculum in a way that will not negatively affect their matriculation,” Coley said.
Construction projects underway or in the planning stage will impact the way people navigate the campus. New student housing by the Residential Suites will alter the route of Kellogg Drive, a major traffic artery on campus.
In addition, a Caltrans project to widen the eastbound 10 Freeway will further impact the commute to campus in the coming months. Coley said there isn’t an easy remedy to transit issues but the university is helping where it can: The Bronco Shuttle website offers real-time arrival status.
“The bigger issue is how do we work with local government, regional agencies, students, faculty and staff to try and create a more accessible and easily navigated campus?” Coley asked.
Coley also said that more bike paths will be taken into account in the next Campus Master Plan. “We’re looking at all forms of transportation on campus,” she said.
- Dream Center: Undocumented Student Services held an open house on Oct. 26, a step forward in serving students. Jarnagin said that finding a space on campus for the center is a priority.
- Rising university enrollment: Cal Poly Pomona received 46,000 applications for 4,000 slots this academic year. “Each year we try to figure out how many students can we accommodate based on the funding that we are expecting and we try to plan accordingly,” Coley said.
- Coley said that making a smoke-free campus is a complicated issue. “I want to look at this in the broader sense and continue with our focus on health and wellness.”
- In regard to technological innovations, Coley cited the Student Innovation Idea Lab as a place where academic disciplines feed off one another and develop innovative products, such as the Lono Drop Shower Monitor. “That’s just a small example of the creative nature of what happens at Cal Poly Pomona, and it happens across all the colleges,” she said.
Play the video for a full recap of Pizza with the Presidents.
Some of the questions and answers are summarized in the following Storify.