2015 SDC Luncheon Celebrates Future Packaging Designers!

On Monday, Sept. 28, the 2015 Paperboard Packaging Alliance’s (PPA) Student Design Challenge (SDC) award winners and participants were recognized at a luncheon held in conjunction with PACK EXPO Las Vegas. Student teams across the country submitted their impressive, industry-quality entries for the competition, which asked participants to design a limited edition innovative paperboard toy package that can also be reused as an interactive structure for the toy.

Winners included student teams from California Polytechnic University (first place), Fashion Institute of Technology (second place) and Rochester Institute of Technology (third place). The student teams and their schools received cash prizes and – of course – bragging rights! The event was live-tweeted from @PaperBasedPkg, using #paperboard. All 53 SDC entries can be viewed here.  

SDC judge Robin Matusik, packaging engineer at Hasbro Toy Company, presented the awards and spoke about her full-circle experience with the program. Ms. Matusik is an alumna of Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) and her team won first place in the first SDC in 2005. At Hasbro, she works with paperboard daily and it is her substrate of choice when it comes to designing toy packaging for top brands such as My Little Pony and Littlest Pet Shop.

SDC judge Pat Shields, director of structural design in packaging solutions at WestRock, also attended the luncheon and encouraged students to enter the paperboard packaging industry, which needs and provides great opportunities for top packaging designers. He expressed that SDC-participation is a resume enhancer that could help them land their dream job.

All luncheon attendees were invited to cast their vote for the People’s Choice Award. This resulted in another win for the third place-winning team from RIT!

Attendees left the luncheon with door prizes and take-home bags with American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA), Paperboard Packaging Council (PPC) and PPA informational materials, the 2015 Winners and Entries brochure, and the 2016 SDC scenario.

We cannot wait to see the designs of the 2016 SDC participants! Students, parents, faculty, and industry representatives are encouraged to attend next year’s luncheon, held at PACK EXPO Chicago in November 2016.

The annual SDC is the only collegiate program where the paperboard packaging industry comes together to ask students from across the U.S. and Canada to design packaging primarily out of paperboard. Continued support from AF&PA and PPC helps promote paperboard packaging as a preferred substrate of choice amongst future packaging designers.