Daniel Turn

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California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo

Gregori Class of 2017

Mechanical Engineering

Weighted GPA at Gregori: Above 4.0

SAT Composite Score (1600 Scale): 1470

ACT Composite Score: 35

Extracurriculars at Gregori: Mock Trial, ASB Leadership, Teens Run Modesto, Soccer, Cross Country, Track and Field, Volunteering at Church, Worked at Modesto Nuts


When choosing between colleges, how did you decide amongst the colleges that you were accepted into?

Choosing between Cal Poly SLO and UCLA was maybe the hardest decision of my life. While friends, prestige, and program were all big considerations I had to think through, when it came down to it, I chose where I would want to live for the next four years and where I think I would feel most at home. San Luis Obispo fit me more as a person, being a college town surrounded by the outdoors rather than a huge school in the city. I felt more apart of the school at Poly with it's smaller size and more personalized "Learn By Doing" experience.

What would you personally say are your school's strengths?

Being such a highly ranked school for engineering, Cal Poly's smaller size compared to other top schools is a huge advantage. My average class size is about 40 or less, so most of my classes honestly feel like high school, and even my one lecture class does not feel overwhelming. Our "Learn by Doing" philosophy has really shown itself this first quarter and has very much impressed me as I'm already in the shop using plasma cutters and welding, along with taking apart engines and discovering how everything works in my lab classes.

What are the classes like? Are they more lecture-based or discussion-based? Do you often partake in group projects?

Most of my basic classes, like physics and calculus, are structured just like high school, going through chapters of a book with different concepts and doing problems for homework. I have two 3 hour lab classes that consist of a short pre lab briefing, followed with the rest of the time allotted for the actual lab, whether it be learning a certain welding process or often working in groups to discover and prove scientific principles. I only have one lecture class of about 200 students that supplements on of my lab classes, as of now.

How would you describe the location of your college? (climate, weather, etc.) Would you describe it as a college town? (urban, suburban, rural) Does the location allow for activities outside of campus? (farmer's markets, concerts, etc.)

San Luis Obispo is really such a great place to live, being a college town with such a close proximity to various beaches, hikes, and downtown. It has a nice coastal climate rarely getting too hot or too cold, perfect for surfing, hiking, or beach days, and breathtaking views all around. Downtown SLO is also an amazing place to explore with so many great restaurants and a farmer's market every Thursday which brings out vendors, fresh produce, and even line dancing. There's also a decent amount of events that come to SLO as our Performing Arts Center constantly hosts shows, and even mainstream artists, like Kid Cudi will come perform from time to time at the Avila Beach Resort right down the road from Poly.