The Grand Finale

Story by Jordan Dunn and Katie Roberti, First Year Agricultural Communications students

Being first year agricultural students in our very first quarter at Cal Poly, SLO, it’s hard for us to already start thinking about life after college; it’s something that seems far away and full of unknowns and unanswered questions.

What job will we have?

              Where will we live?

              What friends will we still be close to?

              What will Cal Poly mean to me in twenty, forty or sixty years to come?

This last question was one that seemed to have the same answer every time it was asked this past Saturday at the Cal Poly Animal Science Reunion.  Talking to Cal Poly alumni at the reunion made it clear that although most graduates move away from San Luis Obispo and all graduates are forced to move past college, the knowledge and memories they have from this university never leave them. Their years at Cal Poly are never taken for granted. It was an overwhelming thing to see the love, joy, and excitement in the faces of Cal Poly alumni to be back at Cal Poly and be reunited with people that either graduated with them, or simply share a devotion to their alma mater.

One former student talked about how relationships from Cal Poly last a lifetime and that once you’re a Mustang, you’re always a Mustang. Another topic of discussion was how the Cal Poly motto, Learn by Doing, has affected alumni’s lives after college. Story after story was told about how influential the hands-on learning received at Cal Poly has made a lasting impression on not only their careers, but their daily lives. The main focus of the night was how amazing the professors and staff are in the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences at Cal Poly. There is not a teacher that goes through this program without adding their legacy.  This was mostly seen through the recognition of Mike and Wendy Hall, who have been highly involved in Cal Poly’s beef program for the past forty years. Although retiring, their love, dedication and passion will forever be at Cal Poly as an example for students and faculty members.

While we had no significant part in this celebration, we are thankful that we were able to attend and see the effect this university has had on so many people. Just listening to conversations and watching people reconnect really helped us realize how important what we are learning is and how significant the relationships we are developing are going to be throughout the remainder of our lives.  While talking to an Animal Science alumni that night, he told us something that is important for every Mustang to remember, “Don’t waste your time at Cal Poly. Take in as much as you can because before you know it, you will graduate and your time as a student at Cal Poly will be gone.”

This video link shows Mike and Wendy Hall being honored by Joel Judge as he shares alumni comments.

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