Cal Poly's Learn By Doing Good Awards

For 37 years, Cal Poly's Community Service Awards have been presented to students, faculty, staff, and community partner agencies for their contributions to the quality of life in San Luis Obispo and their spirit of civic engagement. This year we are excited to announce, in collaboration with our sister unit, Clubs and Organizations, we are combining Cal Poly's Community Service Awards and LEAD Awards for the inaugural offering of the Learn By Doing Good Awards.

Awards are given to highlight specific achievements in service and leadership. The awards are selected on the basis of written nominations by a panel of faculty, staff and students. President Armstrong personally recognizes award recipients for their efforts. Nominations are due by Friday, April 19, 2024.

Please use our online nomination form in Cal Poly Now.

For a list of previous Community Service Award award recipients please click here

Award Categories

Nomination Description
Leadership - Student Leadership goes beyond holding a title - it is the action of leading a group of people. It can involve listening, facilitating, making decisions, asking questions, navigating ambiguity, engaging with others, being vulnerable, and more.
Engagement - Student Engaging with others takes leadership, persistence, patience, empathy, and more. This award will be given to Cal Poly students or student organizations who have exemplified effective and impactful collaboration or partnership with another Cal Poly organization or a local community group during the current academic year.
Advocacy - Staff or Faculty All across Cal Poly, there are countless staff and faculty who advocate for students and help facilitate their organizations, programs, and events. Examples include club advisors, program and center staff, academic advisors, housing staff, etc. The Advocate Award will be given to Cal Poly staff or faculty who consistently advocate and create opportunities for students to demonstrate leadership at Cal Poly. 
Distinction - Student Programs and events are gifts to the Cal Poly community that take hard work, leadership, followership, time, energy, and more. This award will be given to Cal Poly students or student organizations who implemented a high-impact program or event during the current academic year. These programs may have been done with support from Cal Poly departments or faculty; however, they should be student-planned and implemented. 

Service-Learning - Faculty



Service-Learning - Student

A faculty member who has embraced the Learn by Doing spirit and designed an course learning experience for students that was unique and had a positive impact in the SLO County community. 


A student who has exemplified exceptional service in the SLO County community while fulfilling a service component tied to course credit or requirement that addresses community need.

Significant Volunteer Contribution - Staff, Faculty, Student, AmeriCorps Fellow, Student Organization A nominee who has done stellar work with the community, independent of any requirement (course or job) and based on their own motivation.
Outstanding Campus-Community Collaboration - Non-Profit or Governmental Agency and Cal Poly Department or Program Dual award given to a community partner and a Cal Poly program or department who have collaborated to offer a unique experience for students and the community. For example: CP World Languages & Cultures Dept. and Pacheco Elementary School; SLO Food Bank and the CP Food Pantry
Outstanding Community Partner - Non-Profit or Governmental Agency A non-profit or governmental agency who has formed a fruitful partnership with Cal Poly and provided exceptional service opportunities on several levels for the Cal Poly community.




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