Cal Poly honored by President Obama for its engineering graduates

Cal Poly has been honored by President Barack Obama as a leading school in the retention and graduation of engineering students.

Engineering Dean Debra Larson represented Cal Poly at the Feb. 8 event held at the White House.

Larson was one of roughly 40 engineering deans whose colleges do well in student retention, as determined by the American Society for Engineering Education.

Also on hand were Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, Secretary of Energy Steven Chu, and other senior White House and National Science Foundation officials.

While overall college-graduation levels have grown nationwide by nearly 50 percent over the past two decades, the annual number of engineering graduates has virtually stagnated at around 120,000, according to Cal Poly officials.