Cal Poly students’ annual return to San Luis Obispo kicked off in extra-special fashion Friday as the first waves of incoming freshmen moved into the university’s new housing complex, oohing and aahing at their new digs.
The day brought lots of traffic to Grand Avenue with swarms of excited students and parents lugging suitcases and bins into the just-opened $198 million yakʔitʸutʸu housing complex and other campus dorms.
The freshmen will continue arriving Saturday, and returning students will move in Sunday through Wednesday.
On Friday, move-in volunteers wearing bright green T-shirts roamed the new 12-acre community along Grand Avenue, helping families navigate the seven residential buildings and large open spaces in between.
Annika Dahlstrom traveled to Cal Poly from Santa Barbara with her parents, Chris and Susie, and said the campus was “beautiful, especially today.”
“It’s almost like a cultural center,” Chris Dahlstrom said of the new complex, which takes its building names and artwork from the local Chumash tribe.
Annika Dahlstrom, who plans to major in bioresource and agricultural engineering, gave the new housing a “10 out of 10.”
“It’s a very central spot,” she said. “It seems very homey so far.”
Jackie Driscoll could scarcely contain her enthusiasm while posing for a photo with her mom in front of one of the complex’s open spaces. The family traveled to San Luis Obispo from Los Gatos.
“It’s so exciting!” she said.
Driscoll said she plans to major in mathematics and described her new living space as “very clean with lots of windows.”
“It’s a good twice the size of our college dorms,” said Tom Driscoll, Jackie’s dad.
After settling in over the weekend, the approximately 4,400 members of the freshman class will split into their WOW groups with a kickoff event on Sunday night at Spanos Stadium. They will then spend the next week exploring the campus and community with a busy schedule of activities that run through Sept. 23.
Continuing students living off campus will return to town over the coming days, in time for the start of classes on Thursday.
Correction: This article has been edited to reflect the correct number in the incoming freshman class.