By Renee Walker, Dec. 6, 2022

On Dec. 1, the Cal Poly Purlers in collaboration with Student Engagement, Leadership and Success hosted an event titled “Wraps for Calves,” where Cal Poly Pomona students were able to knit and crochet ear warmers to protect Montana cows from harsh winters. 

Julia Portales, Poly Purlers president and animal science major, expressed the importance of events like Wraps for Calves so close to finals. 

“If you’re a student, take time for yourself,” said Portales. “Know that just because you are in school, it doesn’t mean that you have to be working all the time. Community projects and volunteer projects are great. You don’t have to be in your bubble.” 

The Poly Purlers is a club that seeks to unite people through the practice of knitting with the objectives of bringing together animal science majors, establishing new friendships and providing a place to unwind and relax. 

SELS initially contacted the Poly Purlers in hopes to create a separate event for students. Yet when Portales mentioned Wrap for Calves, the SELS office jumped at the idea and wanted to expand the event to more students.  

“The Poly Purlers usually do this event annually, but this is the first time that SELS is helping out,” said Andrea Yeseta, SELS student involvement coordinator. “We have helped out by sponsoring the students who have reserved a spot and providing them with supplies.” 

Renee Walker | The Poly Post

The advisor of Poly Purlers and lecturer in the Department of Animal and Veterinary Science, Kathleen Earle, connected with Sarrazin Ranch through her family ties in Montana. On a trip visiting the ranch, the owner asked if the club could create wraps for the calves since it is not unusual for the animals to suffer frost over the winter. 

Held in Ursa Minor in the Bronco Student Center, Wraps for Calves began with a short speech from Portales to the attending students. Portales detailed the differences of crocheting and knitting along with some house rules. 

After Portales’ speech, students were then separated into two groups: crocheting and knitting. From there the Poly Purlers divided themselves amongst the 20 students and taught an in-depth tutorial on the art form of the student’s choosing. 

So close to Christmas, the holiday spirit filled Ursa Minor as students of all skill levels sang Mariah Carrey’s “All I want for Christmas,” as they tackled their prospective projects. 

Sociology major, Melissa Vega, found out about the event through CPP’s MyBar database. Self-taught, Vega learned how to crochet over the pandemic and has been pursuing different art projects ever since. 

“I hope to make new friends,” said Vega. “I work at the library, and I thought that it would be nice to find people with common interests. I know how to crochet but learning how to knit would be amazing too. I might even join the club. Who knows?” 

As fall semester ends, SELS invites other clubs and organizations to pitch potential ideas for collaboration events. The SELS office holds events once a month, included in those events are CPP Fest, Halloween movie nights and Wraps for Calves. 

“We are always open to collaborations with clubs,” said Yeseta. “If someone has a good idea, then I am more than willing to listen and see what we can plan out.” 

To find out more about the Poly Purlers and SELS, students can visit CPP MyBar’s database for more information. 

Feature image courtesy of Renee Walker

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