The University Outreach Program is designed to build relationships with leading packaging schools and their students. Since these students will soon move on to key positions in the paperboard packaging industry, we believe it is important that we help them cultivate a hands-on experience with, and an affinity for, paper-based packaging prior to graduation so that they are more apt to pursue careers in the folding carton segment.
Summer Internship Program
Thousands of packaging design students will soon be looking for summer work at folding carton and rigid box manufacturers. So why not hire one as an intern at your plant for the summer? Interns bring new ideas, specialized strengths, and a fresh set of eyes, which can inspire your team to find new solutions to common problems. In addition, they can assist with day-to-day tasks so as to free up your staff to work on higher-level projects. Most importantly, hiring a packaging design intern gives you the opportunity to test drive future talent!
To get started, just contact any of the below universities for more information. The preferred method of contact, if any, is indicated with an *.
PPA Student Design Challenge
A joint initiative between the AF&PA and PPC, the Paperboard Packaging Alliance (PPA) sponsors an annual design competition for students working towards a degree in packaging design. Winners receive a cash prize to share among the team and one of equal value for the school and are chosen by a team of five industry professionals who rate submissions based on their response to the competition scenario, innovative structural and graphic design, functionality, and quality of the finished product.
This year a record number of students from the U.S. and Canada participated in the challenge. More than 190 students competed from 13 leading packaging and graphic design programs, including: California Polytechnic State University, Clemson University, Fashion Institute of Technology, Michigan State University, North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University, Pratt Institute, Rochester Institute of Technology, Ryerson College, San Jose State University, University of Florida, University of Wisconsin-Stout, Virginia Tech, and first-time participant, Maryland Institute College of Art.
For more info, visit the Student Design Challenge Page.
The Millennial Study
Through an in-depth research study that incorporated social media, interviews, and focus group discussions, in 2013, the Responsible Package initiative researched Millennials’ (those born between 1980-2000) attitudes, values, and behaviors towards paper-based packaging. The study provided insight into the role packaging plays in their lives, which is important because the preferences they establish now will influence future packaging trends.
The study found that Millennials love the idea of repurposing, such as paper bags used as containers for waste or shoe boxes used to store and organize materials. They also recognized that paper-based packaging is the most environmentally friendly packaging option and anticipated paper-based packaging to hold an even more prominent role in the years to come. On the other hand, Millennials are not yet willing to make any sacrifices, such as making lifestyle changes or paying a premium for more eco-friendly packaging.
Participants cited two key factors in influencing their recycling behavior: their parents who instilled recycling behavior at an early age, making it a second-nature behavior; and school, where they learned about recycling and had recycling clubs. However, most Millennials do not pay attention to the type of paper-based packaging used and have minimal knowledge about the differences between paper-based packaging materials.
Read more about the results of the study.
Sponsor a Packaging Student
Sponsor a packaging design student to attend a conference or workshop for a discounted rate. Your sponsored student will be able to learn valuable information about our industry, will be exposed to PPC's professional, supportive environment, and will form a lasting bond with your company. When they return home to complete their studies, they will relay their experiences to fellow students and professors and when they graduate they will be much more likely to pursue a career in folding cartons/rigid boxes. Sponsorships are also great PR--local and trade publications love to run articles on companies that support learning opportunities!
Discounted Student Rates
Folding Carton Boot Camp $695 (regularly $1,195)
Spring & Fall Meeting $695 (regularly $1,495)
Technical & Production Forum $295 (regularly $ 495)
Support your Local Packaging School
Engage the students at your local packaging design school by giving a presentation to a class on the benefits of paperboard... or discuss your role in the industry and share your career experiences. Keep in mind, word spreads FAST on college campuses. By ensuring these students are aware of the versatility and sustainability of paperboard, you may also be creating some industry advocates! You can also demonstrate what your organization has designed and produced; this is a great opportunity to let your company shine.
For FREE customizable powerpoints that can be used for your presentation or a list of packaging design schools near you, email Nicole Miller.
Ideas and Innovation Handbook: This easy-to-use reference book features more than 700 detailed illustrations and characteristics of folding carton and rigid box styles and designs and explains the various types of paperboard. University professors are eligible to receive the handbook for students free of charge; for more info, email the Paperboard Packaging Alliance.