The article by Joe Tarica, “Cal Poly’s traditional ‘Learn by Doing’ motto far superior to trite ‘Mustang Way,’” ignores the difference between a motto and a code.
“Learn by Doing” is the academic motto for Cal Poly because it is a polytechnic university with a hands-on academic model. The “Mustang Way” is a code of behavior that addresses the attitude with which students, staff and faculty work together in a positive, cooperative manner to achieve excellence. One does not override the other — they complement each other by addressing both the academic and the co-curricular attitudes embraced by any well-rounded higher-learning experience.
The assumption that the Mustang Way’s popularity is only backed by President Jeffrey Armstrong and the Athletics Department is erroneous. The students took the original idea and developed it into something they can be proud of.
I would hope The Tribune, in the future, does a better of job of supporting Cal Poly than of finding fault. Where it should be applauding the broadening of the college experience, it is deriding the very things that it complains about in student behavior and negative impacts.
Instead of nurturing a positive town/gown partnership, it is fostering negative opinions.