Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 75.14
Liaison Kylee Singh
Submission Date July 10, 2023

STARS v2.2

California Polytechnic State University
EN-3: Student Life

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Kylee Singh
Sustainability Coordinator
Energy Utilities and Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have an active student group focused on sustainability?:

Name and a brief description of the active student groups focused on sustainability:

Eco Reps x Sustainability Roundtables is a group of students committed to creating a culture of environmental stewardship on campus at Cal Poly. Managed by the Green Campus Team within Facilities, Eco-Reps exemplify the "learn by doing" motto and play a direct role in Cal Poly's advancement to a fully sustainable future. Becoming an Eco-Rep will equip you with knowledge and skills to tackle environmental issues through tangible action and outreach.

Our club meetings are a great space to meet other green-minded people while furthering your foundational knowledge of sustainability! We often hear from guest speakers, prepare for upcoming events we are collaborating on, and learn from each other through group discussions! The meeting time changes every quarter, so follow us on Instagram @calpolyecoreps to stay up to date. Or, join our Slack to be informed about events that we are participating in outside of our general meetings!


Does the institution have a garden, farm, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery program, or an urban agriculture project where students are able to gain experience in organic agriculture and sustainable food systems?:

A brief description of the gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, and/or urban agriculture projects:

Organic Farm- A 9 acre production unit in the Horticulture and Crop Science Department that is certified organic by California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF) with the primary mission of providing undergraduate students a place to experience hands-on learning in organic and sustainable farming and gardening practices. The farms vegetable production includes dozens of varieties of produce that are marketed in several local direct sales events like farmer’s markets, a campus farm market and to local vendors and restaurants; produce not sold is donated to the campus Food Pantry. The organic farm also serves as a classroom and laboratory to other Cal Poly courses and research programs. Faculty, staff and students jointly manage and steward the farm. The organic farm is supported by the Horticulture and Crop Science Department, the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences, and also by grants and private donations. https://aeps.calpoly.edu/organic-farm/cal-poly-organic-farm

Food Pantry garden- The 1,200-square-foot Food Pantry Garden, sponsored by Cal Poly’s Campus Health & Wellbeing Department along with the Honors Program and Facilities’ Energy, Utilities, and Sustainability Department is open for any student, staff or faculty member interested in a garden space. The garden will provide the campus community a space to grow vegetables while also allowing the gardeners to donate freshly picked produce to the Cal Poly Food Pantry, supporting food-insecure students.

Does the institution have a student-run enterprise that includes sustainability as part of its mission statement or stated purpose?:

A brief description of the student-run enterprises:

Real Food Collaborative CSA- Since the fall of 2016, a dedicated group of Cal Poly students - The Real Food Collaborative - has been gathering local and sustainable produce for students and community members and selling quarterly vegetable box subscriptions.

Does the institution have a sustainable investment fund, green revolving fund, or sustainable microfinance initiative through which students can develop socially, environmentally and fiscally responsible investment and financial skills?:

A brief description of the sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives:

Poly Canyon Ventures is a 501(c)(3) non-profit founded and managed by Cal Poly students. PCV provides high-impact Cal Poly student-led startups with funding, consulting, and other resources to help them grow and thrive. PCV is accelerating cleantech innovation and entrepreneurship at Cal Poly through the Climate Changer's Fund.

Has the institution hosted a conference, speaker series, symposium, or similar event focused on sustainability during the previous three years that had students as the intended audience?:

A brief description of the conferences, speaker series, symposia, or similar events focused on sustainability:

Hosted by Cal Poly’s Energy, Utilities and Sustainability Department, Earth Week is an annual series of events to allow participants to network with sustainability professionals, try new foods and learn the best ways to protect the planet.


Has the institution hosted a cultural arts event, installation, or performance focused on sustainability with the previous three years that had students as the intended audience?:

A brief description of the cultural arts events, installations, or performances focused on sustainability:

Nearly 3,000 attendees participated in more than 30 workshops and talks across campus on Thursday, Feb. 13, 2023 for the “Inclusion Starts with Me” Teach In. Teach In sessions informed and inspired students from all majors to think about diversity and inclusivity and act in their work fields and social environments.
The fourth annual Teach In covered a wide range of topics — from environmentalism and health, to inclusive design and race relations, to prison reform and feminist media. One session offered was the "Art and Design Activist Artmaking Workshop" where participants can experience screen printing, stencils, button making, and other forms of activist art!


Does the institution have a wilderness or outdoors program that follow Leave No Trace principles?:

A brief description of the wilderness or outdoors programs that follow Leave No Trace principles:

Poly Escapes offers about twenty low-cost trips per quarter with no experience necessary. Trips vary from one-day local journeys to full weekend excursions. Leave No Trace knowledge is a mandated part of Poly Escapes Trip Leader Training. The program implements the LNT principles on over sixty trips of fourteen students annually, including several volunteer based back country environmental maintenance trips.


Has the institution had a sustainability-focused theme chosen for a themed semester, year, or first-year experience during the previous three years?:

A brief description of the sustainability-focused themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences:

Does the institution have a program through which students can learn sustainable life skills?:

A brief description of the programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills:

The goal of the Green Room Certification is threefold: to serve as a mechanism to continue increasing sustainability awareness, to bring together already sustainable minded students, and to bring in as many non-green students as possible into the community. The lifestyle choices of on campus residents impact their peers, campus, as well as the greater San Luis Obispo community and the Green Room certification aims to teach campus residents tips and tricks to live more sustainable while they live on campus. The program tracks individual residents consumption behaviors through a voluntary scorecard and provides them ratings based on how sustainable they live.


Does the institution offer sustainability-focused student employment opportunities?:

A brief description of the sustainability-focused student employment opportunities offered by the institution:

The Cal Poly Green Campus program, originally established in 2007, was funded by Investor Owned Utilities and administered by the Alliance to Save Energy. Upon termination of utility funding in 2015, Cal Poly took the program in-house. The Green Campus team now works from a student led model with oversight from the Energy, Utilities, and Sustainability department in Facilities. With these resources, Green Campus students are better able to focus on the 2023 CSU Sustainability Policy goals related to energy, water, and Zero Waste, and support of student clubs. Every year the team six positions are open for renewal and offer opportunity to students from all five colleges to apply for a sustainability focused position on campus.

Does the institution have a graduation pledge through which students pledge to consider social and environmental responsibility in future job and other decisions?:

A brief description of the graduation pledge(s):

A brief description of other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives that do not fall into one of the above categories:

Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.