COVID-19 Information

Updated July 6, 2020 

Below is housing specific information regarding COVID-19. For campus resources from all departments, visit Cal Poly's hub for COVID-19 information at

Preparing for the 2020-21 Academic Year

While we do not know what the public health status of our community or state will be in fall, University Housing is moving forward with the expectation that students will be arriving in September. Cal Poly submitted its housing plan to the CSU Chancellor's Office and must wait for approval, as well as guidelines from Gov. Newsom, before releasing assignments and preparing for move-in. 

As we know more, we will communicate with students to help everyone make decisions with their health and safety top of mind. In the meantime, please continue to check here, Cal Poly's coronavirus website, and our Student Housing webpages for updates. 

First-Year and Transfer Housing Assignments

Once the CSU and Gov. Newsom release their housing guidelines for fall, University Housing will start assigning students into rooms that meet those requirements.

Your assignments will be based on a lottery, and your preferences will be considered during the assignment process. Your assignment was scheduled to be posted in your Housing Portal on July 16, 2020. However, this date will be delayed as we wait for the CSU and the state's recommendations. A notification will be sent when assignments are viewable.

Fall Housing Deferrals

We are offering continuing, transfer and first-year students who have all virtual schedules the option to delay the start of their housing contracts until January. The initial payments made in the housing application ($1,500 for first-year and $500 for transfer and continuing students) will be applied to your winter term rates. You must live at your permanent home to qualify for a deferral. First-years and continuing students must defer by Aug. 26; transfers have until Aug. 28 to defer. See more information and/or defer in your Housing Portal under "Cancellations/Deferrals".

Housing Cancellations

First-year students are required to live on campus; campus housing is optional for continuing students and transfers. You can cancel your housing contract in the Housing Portal under "Cancellations/Deferrals". Students not attending Cal Poly will receive a full refund. The initial fee is not refundable to continuing and transfer students who cancel to live off-campus. Late cancellation fees apply after Aug. 26.

Fall Communications

To support you in planning for fall, we've compiled all email communications from University Housing regarding fall 2020 below:

New Student Emails

5/31/20 - Please Complete Your Housing Application by June 1

We’re reaching out because you haven’t completed your housing application. Please complete the remaining steps, confirm your housing preferences, and submit the application by Monday, June 1.

If you plan to defer your stay in campus housing to winter quarter, complete the steps up to and including signing the contract. Then, submit your deferral through the Housing Cancellation/Deferral link in your Housing Portal.   

We’re here to help. If you have any questions, please call 805-756-1226 or email  University Housing Cal Poly

5/28/20 - Fall Housing Updates and Options

We’re reaching out with a campus housing update to help you make decisions that are right for you for fall quarter. Please keep in mind, the information we are sharing is what we know at this time; we will continue to be in touch with updates. Deferring Fall Housing While we plan to welcome all first-year students who choose a fall move-in, please know that if all of your fall classes are virtual you will have the option to defer your housing contract until winter quarter. ·

Deferrals for fall housing can be made in your Housing Portal through the Housing Cancellation/Deferral link. You will have access to the deferral link after you have signed the housing contract. · If you decide to defer your housing, your initial payment will be applied to your winter 2021 housing rates (you must live at your permanent residence, not off-campus in San Luis Obispo County as our first-year housing requirement is still in effect).

Fall Housing Options

If you plan to live on campus in fall, we want you to know that we anticipate altering room configurations for the first quarter to create more space for physical distancing. Our priority is to protect your health, safety and well-being, and that of our resident advisors and professional staff. · Most rooms in our first-year communities will be two-person or double rooms. Occupancy may change for winter and spring quarters. · Three-person roommate groups should consider how they will disperse for fall. Please discuss this situation with both of your roommates and then return to the application by June 1 to update roommate preferences to include one roommate or no roommates. ·

We will assign first-year students in rooms for fall to more quickly respond to this rapidly evolving situation. Assignments will be based on a lottery, and preferences will be considered during the assignment process as much as possible. There may be an opportunity to change rooms before fall move-in, based on availability.

Editing Housing Preferences

Monday, June 1 is the final day to edit your application preferences. If you would like to update preferences, such as roommates, Residential Learning Communities or accommodations, please do so by Monday. We thank you for your patience and ask for your understanding as we continue to adapt. If you have questions, please reach out to us at 805-756-1226 or Stay safe and be well. Cal Poly Housing


If you are looking for general housing information, visit our Housing FAQ page.

Will University Housing and Campus Dining remain open?

Cerro Vista is currently open to residents living on campus for summer and the Housing Administrative office (Bldg. 31) is observing normal business hours, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. Campus Dining will be closed for the summer.

We expect housing to remain open for fall term. Campus Dining anticipates opening Vista Grande, Mustang Station, Campus Market, Village Market, Starbucks, Subway and food trucks to serve fall residents of housing and the campus community. Venues may change, as the campus continues to plan for fall.

How are University Housing and Campus Dining responding to COVID-19?

Cal Poly has been working closely with the County of San Luis Obispo Public Health Department and state and federal authorities since January to plan for and monitor the situation. We are currently following the recommendations of county health officials on the campus-wide responses to COVID-19.

Will I be able to live on campus for fall 2020?

University Housing is prepared to house students in the fall. How many students we can accommodate will depend on consultation with the local government, health officials and CSU, as well as the county’s status under the governor’s reopening plans. 

At this time, we are encouraging students whose health and personal situations allow to plan on returning to San Luis Obispo for fall quarter. Students for whom this is not the case are being encouraged to take all virtual courses and remain at their areas of permanent residence. 

We anticipate that we will be able to accommodate all first-year students in our residence halls. The campus’s first-year housing requirement will remain in place; first-year students will not be permitted to live off-campus in San Luis Obispo — only on campus or at their place of permanent residence. As always, we provide exemptions for local students. 

We know that students and employees need information to plan for the fall. Unfortunately, because the pandemic situation continues to evolve rapidly, there is simply some uncertainty at this time. We will continue to update you via email when more information becomes available. 

I have all virtual classes for fall term and don't need to be on campus. Can I defer my housing contract?

Yes. We are offering both continuing and first-year students who have schedules that are all virtual the opportunity to delay the start of their housing contracts until January. The initial payments made in the housing application ($1,500 for first-year and $500 for transfer and continuing students) will be applied to your winter term rates. Defer in your Housing Portal by Aug. 26.

What is the cancellation policy for continuing students who have secured housing for next year?

At this time, our policy remains the same for students who cancel housing to live off-campus. The $500 initial payment is non-refundable. Continuing students must cancel in their Housing Portal by Aug. 26 to avoid additional fees.

I'm a former resident and I left some belongings in my room. Can I still come get my stuff? 

Please contact or call 805-756-1226 to make arrangements.

I've left campus and didn't return my old key. How can get them back to Housing?

If you’ve already left campus, mail your key and/or access card back to campus — even if you have left items in your room. Collecting keys from students not staying for summer helps us keep the buildings secure.

Send your key/access card to:

Attn: Planning and Support Services,
University Housing Building 31
1 Grand Ave. San Luis Obispo, 93407

I live off campus but plan to leave San Luis Obispo. What do I need to do?

Off-campus rental leases are civil contracts that individuals enter into with property owners. Tenants should look at their agreements to determine what the language states about early termination of their leases. Student may seek to engage with their landlords and property management companies in a mutual negotiation of current terms.

Gov. Newsom’s Executive Order protecting renters does not go as far as relieving a tenant from the obligation to pay rent or allow individuals to get out of their lease agreements outside of any clauses that are specifically described in those agreements. The full Executive Order can be found here. New executive orders are posted here.

Federal government updates on this topic: Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) issued guidance for public housing authorities, landlords, shelters, non-profits, grantees, and stakeholders.

San Luis Obispo County updates: San Luis Obispo County Department of Public Health

Regardless of your living situation, it is important that you maintain as much social distancing as possible. Housing decisions should include consideration of the goal of achieving social distancing to the greatest degree possible.

Current Campus Services

While the majority of campus services have transitioned to virtual operations, Cal Poly is committed to supporting students who are living on campus summer quarter.  For more information, please visit

Dining Services (closed for summer)
805-756-5939  |

Campus Health & Wellbeing
805-756-1211  |  |  

Health Center (Bldg. 27)
Health: 805.756.1211 | Counseling: 805.756.2511 | Wellbeing: 805.756.6181 | Safer: 805.756.2282

Cal Poly Food Pantry (Bldg. 27, Room 10)
805-756-6181 | Check here for hours

University Housing (Bldg. 31)
805-756-1226 | Open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays

Current Residents: After-hours Support

Cal Poly Police Department (Bldg. 36)

  • For emergencies: Call 911
  • Non-emergency, 24/7 dispatch: 805-756-228

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