University Housing

Catalog Home

Building 31
Phone: 805.756.1226

University Housing provides an inclusive living experience for all Cal Poly students. Engaging residential life programs, led by professional staff and peer leaders in diverse Learning Communities, provide a foundational experience rooted in the Mustang Way that supports Learn by Doing, encourages excellence, and promotes student success.

Because students who live on campus have greater success in college, Cal Poly requires all freshman students to live on campus.* University Housing also offers campus housing to continuing, transfer and graduate students. All campus residents have access to academic, social, wellness and awareness events, enjoy opportunities to build life-long friendships and typically achieve better grades than those who live off campus. 

*Freshmen who do not intend to live on campus may request an exemption. Exemptions from the residential requirement are considered based upon the Freshman On-Campus Living Exemption Policy.

Learning Communities
In addition to our beautiful campus and Learn by Doing instruction, Cal Poly offers a strong sense of community. Every campus resident is part of a residential Learning Community. The 2017-18 Learning Communities are:

Living Learning Program
Students live with peers who share their academic college, and connect with faculty, academic advisors and other resources to support their first-year experience.

Connections Themes
Students choose from a wide variety of academically-themed communities and live with other students from various majors who share similar interests.

Students engage in Learn by Doing and collaborate with other young entrepreneurs to springboard ideas into action. They can explore a start-up idea or be part of a team to support a new innovation, business or concept come to life.

Transitions Program
Transitions residents live independently in an apartment community. They explore their personal strengths through the StrengthsQuest program and connect with academic and career advising resources.

Sophomore, Transfer & Continuing Student Success Program
Programs are focused on boosting academic and career success by supporting students in taking advantage of valuable campus partner connections and making life-long friendships. 

iCommunity 2.0
Residents live with entrepreneurs, creators and visionaries across all majors to cultivate an innovative mindset. The focus is on preparing to become emerging leaders and career-ready entrepreneurs who are ready to generate innovative solutions to real-world problems, research promising technologies and develop viable business plans.​ 

Cal Poly Lofts
Cal Poly Lofts, located in downtown San Luis Obispo, is for continuing students who have an entrepreneurial perspective and are ready to launch innovations or business ideas. Programs are offered in close collaboration with the Cal Poly Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship.

Residential Life Staff
Learning Community programs and activities are administered by Coordinators of Student Development --full-time, live-in professionals who assist residents with counseling, crisis intervention, general referrals, and conduct actions. The Coordinators of Student Development also oversee front desk services and the Resident Advisors (RAs). RAs are typically upper-division students who understand the challenges faced by new students and make living on campus a positive and memorable experience. They are trained in building community, making academic referrals, planning events, mediation and crisis intervention.

Student Leadership
Student representatives are elected in fall term to serve on governing boards in each of the halls and apartments. Participants contribute to their hall’s community by planning social, recreational, and educational events, and by voicing student-related concerns. Networks in community services, recreational sports and multicultural issues provide additional opportunities for student involvement.

Cal Poly ResNet is the campus housing network. All campus rooms have 24/7 access to the Cal Poly Network and wireless Internet service. University Housing’s ResNet Office provides computing support programs for all campus residents.

Securing Campus Housing
New students
Only students who accept Cal Poly’s offer of admission are able to apply for campus housing. To secure a space for freshman or transfer student housing, students must complete the following steps on the Cal Poly Portal:

  1. Accept the offer of admission from Cal Poly.
  2. Apply online through the Housing tab & agree to the terms & conditions.
  3. Pay or indicate Financial Aid for the initial payment.

Housing preferences are assigned on a first-come, first-served basis, based upon the date the student secured housing (by completing all of the steps above), demand, and availability.

Continuing students
To secure a space for continuing student housing, students must complete the following steps on the Cal Poly Portal:

  1. Apply online through the Housing tab & agree to the terms & conditions.
  2. Pay or indicate Financial Aid for the initial payment.

For complete application information, visit the “Housing & Fees” pages on the University Housing website.

The initial payment, required to secure housing, is the first step in the payment process. A non-refundable initial payment may be required for continuing and transfer student applications. Students can pay the initial payment, or indicate on the housing application that it will be paid by financial aid, provided they expect to receive sufficient aid to cover tuition, housing and dining fees. The balance of fees for the academic year are paid in advance, either in full, by installment payment plan, or by quarterly financial aid disbursements.

Location Price
Freshman residence halls: double occupancy:$7,792
Required freshman dining plan, residence halls:$5,323
Location Price
Freshman apartments, private rooms: $9,014
Required freshman dining plan, apartments:$4,259

*University Housing also offers triple rooms in the residence halls and shared and double suite bedrooms in campus apartments. These room types are less expensive.

Off-Campus Housing Resources
University Housing publishes the “Educated Renters’ Guide” to support students with the transition to off-campus housing. As well, the University Housing webpage includes a link to off-campus housing resources.