Cal Poly Appoints New Off-Campus Housing Support Program Coordinator

Sarah Baccio.

The program aims to help students successfully transition from on-campus to off-campus housing

– Cal Poly has appointed Sarah Bacio as Coordinator of its Off-Campus Housing Support Program, which aims to help students successfully transition from on-campus to off-campus life within the San Luis Obispo community.

According to the college, Bacio will help students identify and secure affordable and safe off-campus housing, identify resources to help with housing expenses, and provide opportunities to help them better understand the off-campus housing market.

In her new role, she will also offer a series of tenant certifications to educate participating students on various aspects of off-campus housing to improve the tenant experience for students and landlords.

“Every year we hear from students, especially third- and fourth-year students, that obtaining off-campus housing is one of the biggest challenges they face,” said Joy Pedersen, Dean of Cal Poly students. “And those challenges have increased dramatically over the past two years. The high cost of housing and the lack of affordable housing present complex challenges for students.

Bacio is a graduate of Humboldt State University (now Cal Poly Humboldt) and held various coordinator and career counseling positions there before joining Cal Poly in 2021 as Cal Poly Scholars Program Coordinator.

His latest appointment follows the university’s establishment of the Off-Campus Housing Support Program within the Office of the Dean of Students earlier this year. The program was developed to help students overcome the ongoing challenge of accessing and finding affordable housing in the San Luis Obispo community. With some students experiencing rent increases of up to 20%, Pedersen noted that these issues are particularly difficult for low-income and Pell-eligible students, including those with dependents.

“While much more needs to be done to address local and statewide housing issues, this program is a way to begin to help students navigate the competitive rental market and support students who struggle to get affordable housing,” Pedersen said.

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