Cal Poly College of Engineering Receives Transformational Gift to Create The Noyce School of Applied Computing

Two students at computer
Photo by Joe Johnston/University Photographer/Cal Poly

Cal Poly is pleased to announce the establishment of The Noyce School of Applied Computing, a new interdisciplinary school (the first of its kind at Cal Poly) combining three departments under one umbrella — Electrical Engineering, Computer Science and Software Engineering, and Computer Engineering — to create interdisciplinary collaboration opportunities for departments and faculty doing applied computing across the university in fields such as statistics.

The Noyce School is made possible by donations received from the Robert N. Noyce Trust — with its current intention to make a future eight-figure bequest to Cal Poly’s College of Engineering. Robert N. Noyce was a co-founder of Intel and inventor of the integrated circuit, which fueled the personal computer revolution and gave Silicon Valley its name. Nicknamed the “Mayor of Silicon Valley,” Noyce’s impact on the field of computing and society at large cannot be overstated.

The creation of The Noyce School (pending CSU Board of Trustee approval) will, among other things, provide faculty with additional resources for teaching and applied research and undergraduate students in computing with opportunities to further their interests in teaching and learning. Students will also benefit from industry opportunities for paid internships and opportunities for mentors to provide guidance and counseling along the way.

“These donations and the proposed extraordinary bequest from the Noyce Trust will help to fulfill a vision that the faculty of the college have been promoting for a long time, which is to establish a school of applied computing at Cal Poly,” said Amy Fleischer, dean of the College of Engineering. “By combining these three departments into one endowed school, we’ll be able to create new resources for students and faculty in the application of computing, develop unique educational student experiences and support interdisciplinary and collaborative research, teaching, and learning within this field. We are so thankful to the Robert N. Noyce Trust for helping us make this vision a reality.”

Said Michael Groom, a trustee of the Robert N. Noyce Trust: “We are thrilled that Dr. Noyce’s legacy will be recognized and appreciated by the students and faculty at Cal Poly for generations to come. We believe the establishment of The Noyce School of Applied Computing comes at a pivotal time, when there is a major deficit of new graduates in the fields of computing and computer sciences, and the need and demand for these skilled workers remains very high.

“Cal Poly’s renowned Learn by Doing, hands-on model will prepare a pipeline of well-qualified students to face the challenges of the 21st century. We think this is a wonderful way to honor Dr. Noyce’s name and his accomplishments.”

Added Cal Poly President Jeffrey D. Armstrong: “As a state institution, Cal Poly has a mandate to educate its students to help solve the challenges of tomorrow. This transformational gift by the Robert N. Noyce Trust helps enable Cal Poly’s ongoing growth in this field and will create increased interest and investment from government and industry. It will also serve to further differentiate and elevate the status of Cal Poly and make the university even more attractive to potential students.”

The Cal Poly College of Engineering understands there has been an enormous amount of turmoil and transition due to Coronavirus (COVID-19). As we continue offering support to our students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends, we also continue providing critical updates as well as college highlights. Ours is a college full of creative and bright engineers and staff. For more information on COVID-19 visit the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website. For more information on how Cal Poly is responding to COVID-19, visit the Cal Poly Coronavirus website Coronavirus website.

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