Recent News

Brian Beaton: Decoding Data Science

Sep 27, 2016

Dr. Brian Beaton recently gave an invited lecture in Dubrovnik, Croatia at the Technologies of Digital Work PhD Training School, an initiative funded by the European Cooperation in Science and Technology (COST) as part of the Dynamics of Virtual Work Research Network. Attended by PhD students from across Europe, the PhD Training School focused on key workforce trends involving digital culture, new modes of mediated employment, and social facets of digital work. Entitled “Decoding Data Science,” Dr. Beaton’s lecture covered the dramatic growth of the data science profession in the United States and creativity challenges facing data science research cultures. 

Coleen Carrigan: Awarded NSF Grant to Diversify the National Engineering Population

Sep 27, 2016

Cal Poly professor Coleen Carrigan is part of a team that has been awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) ADVANCE grant to broaden participation in engineering. Launching Academics on the Tenure-Track: an Intentional Community in Engineering (LATTICE) is a joint effort between California Polytechnic State University, the University of Washington, and North Carolina State University that seeks to positively impact women faculty in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS) and underrepresented minority women in academic Engineering. Carrigan leads the ethnographic research to study:

· Individual and group values, politics, and practices of change agents in the NSF ADVANCE community;

· Differences in social identities and disciplines of both program organizers and participants; and

· Feminist strategies to facilitate consciousness-raising and transformative leadership in STEM.

This research is intended to create and share new knowledge on social change efforts in academic engineering and the critical elements of intervention programs that ensure the retention and success of faculty underrepresented in engineering. The long-term goal of LATTICE is to diversify the national engineering faculty population.

Conversations with Palm Theatre Founder, Jim Dee

Sep 21, 2016

Conversations with Palm Theatre Founder, Jim Dee

Join in conversation with local business owner and Cal Poly alum, Jim Dee, about the power of film to personalize stories of social struggle and injustice, and at times, provoke change. Jim opened The Palm Theatre in August, 1988, and it has been providing alternative cinema to San Luis Obispo County ever since. It’s one of the first and only solar operated movie theaters in the world.

Dee will discuss: How can film make the political personal? How can film help audiences feel the struggles of others? How has it inspired change? He will also screen the 1948 Italian neorealist masterpiece, “Bicycle Thieves,” directed by Vittorio De Sica.

This event is free and open to the public.

When: Wednesday, October 26, 2016 (4-6:30PM)

Where: UU (65-204)

Please RSVP here:

For more information, email

This event is sponsored by the CSU Entertainment Industry Initiative, the College of Liberal Arts, and the Media Arts, Society & Technology minor.

Short Film Screening "Debris (Escombros)" followed by Q&A with Filmmaker, Mary-Lyn Chambers

Sep 19, 2016

Short Film "Debris (Escombros)" Screening and Q&A with Filmmaker, Mary-Lyn Chambers

Join us for a special screening of short film Debris (Escrombos), a high stakes, coming of age drama that follows twelve year old Ana as she tries to flee violence in Central America. Caught in the gears of a US immigration center, Ana finds that seeking safety will cost more than she bargained for.

After the screening, Writer/Director, Mary-Lyn Chambers will host a Q&A about filmmaking and navigating the male dominated film industry.

This event is free and open to the public.

When: Wednesday, October 12, 2016 (4:10 - 6PM)
Where: ATL (007-0001)

Learn more at

Please RSVP here:

Funding for this event is made possible by the The California State University Entertainment Alliance (CSUEA) and the College of Liberal Arts.

‘Solving Society's Audacious Challenges’ Topic of Nov. 16 Talk at Cal Poly

Nov 5, 2015

Aaron Opdyke, a Cal Poly civil engineering alumnus now working as a research assistant, will present “Solving Society's Audacious Challenges: The Nexus of Engineering and the Humanities”. After the talk, he will answer questions from the audience.

Date: Monday, Nov. 16
Time: 6:10 p.m.
Location: The Advanced Technology Laboratories (Building No. 7) at Cal Poly


At the United Nations Sustainable Development Summit in September, 193 nations committed to three extraordinary tasks: end extreme poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and address climate change. Opdyke will discuss the need for interdisciplinary teams to solve these pressing societal challenges.

Opdyke, who worksat the University of Colorado, Boulder,
will also present best practices in high-stakes interdisciplinary collaboration by sharing his recent research in post-disaster recovery. Specifically, he will examine how such collaborations played an integral role in post-disaster recovery efforts following
Super Typhoon Haiyan, which struck the Philippines in 2013.

His talk is co-sponsored by the new science, technology and society (STS) minor program in Cal Poly’s College of Liberal Arts. Students in the program explore the interconnections of science, technology and society and how each impacts and influences the other and the world.

“The STS program is designed to empower students to tackle the biggest challenges and questions we face in the 21st century,” said program Director Jane Lehr. “We need leaders like Aaron who can understand, innovate and create bridges between diverse disciplines and professions to solve today’s and tomorrow’s complex problems.”

The event is co-sponsored by Cal Poly’s College of Liberal Arts Lottery Fund, the Liberal Arts and Engineering Studies Program, and the Cal Poly chapter of Engineers Without Borders, of which Opdyke is past president. This event is part of the Cal Poly Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority and Underrepresented Student Participation in STEM Program’s Students for Social Change series.

Changing the World in Minor (and Major) Ways

Aug 7, 2015

Katie Van Meter and Jen Silva

Cyber-warfare. Climate change. Health inequalities. Risk communication. These are just a few of the biggest problems our generation faces. Now, Cal Poly looks to equip students with the tools and skills to tackle these giant challenges with the College of Liberal Arts’ new Science, Technology and Society (STS) Minors Program.


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