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Student Design Challenge Winners Make Community Relief Packaging

Fashion Institute of Technology Students Win 2021 Competition 

AF&PA CONTACT: Tim Ebner  
(202) 463-2587; 

PPC CONTACT: Brian Westerlind 
(413) 686-9178, 

DENVER – The Paperboard Packaging Alliance (PPA) announced the winners of the 2021 Student Design Challenge, an annual competition that fosters awareness and appreciation of paperboard packaging with the next generation of packaging design decision-makers. Design teams from across the country created sustainable packaging solutions with paperboard for community relief organizations.  

“Teams of students and educators worked together on innovative projects demonstrating a bright future for our industry,” said Heidi Brock, AF&PA President & CEO. “These projects highlight the possibilities of sustainable paper products, and how packaging can contribute to the work of community relief organizations during the ongoing pandemic.” 

Student design projects from the following schools were named as winners

  • 1st Place: Fashion Institute of Technology, Super Kit 
  • 2nd Place: California Polytechnic State University, Sweet Pea 
  • 3rd Place: Rochester Institute of Technology, Super Sibs Lemon-Aid Package   

“Congratulations to the winners on their impressive designs. Our Student Design Challenge participants have used collaboration and real-world skills to prepare for exciting careers in our industry,” Brock said. 

“The Student Design Challenge represents the full-range and diverse talents of the next generation of packaging professionals” said Paperboard Packaging Council (PPC) President Ben Markens. “We’re honored to celebrate these students and host them at our Spring Outlook & Strategies Conference, where they can network and engage with industry leaders.”  

Additional acknowledgments were announced for the following entries:  

  • California Polytechnic State University, Sweet Pea (People’s Choice Award) 
  • California Polytechnic State University, Art Kit (Honorable Mention)  
  • Fashion Institute of Technology, PERIOD All-In-One Dispenser Box (Honorable Mention) 
  • California Polytechnic State University, EcoSlo (Shout-out)  
  • Fashion Institute of Technology, Doctors Without Borders Obstetrics Kit (Shout-out) 
  • Ryerson University, Adventure Club Party Box (Shout-out)   
  • The University of Texas at Arlington, 4Forever (Shout-out) 

The Student Design Challenge encourages university students in leading packaging and graphic design programs to show off their creative talent, design skills and innovative approaches to meet real-world customer needs and marketing scenarios. Winners were honored on Thursday evening at the Hilton Denver City Center during PPC’s 2022 Spring Outlook & Strategies Conference, which brought together more than 200 paperboard packaging professionals. 

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About the Paperboard Packaging Alliance
The Paperboard Packaging Alliance (PPA) is a joint initiative of the American Forest & Paper Association and the Paperboard Packaging Council. The mission is to promote the benefits of paperboard packaging to influence preference for these materials in packaging design and selection. PPA is a proud supporter of collegiate packaging and design programs across the U.S. and Canada, donating thousands of dollars in scholarships, materials, and classroom resources each year. Alliance membership includes companies representing the full range of mills and converters engaged in the production of paperboard packaging. Additional information about PPA can be found at

About the Paperboard Packaging Council
Now in its 92nd year, PPC is the North American association for converters of paperboard packaging and their suppliers. PPC works to grow, promote, and protect the paperboard packaging industry while providing its members with resources and tools to compete successfully in the marketplace. For more information, visit

About the American Forest & Paper Association
The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) serves to advance U.S. paper and wood products manufacturers through fact-based public policy and marketplace advocacy. The forest products industry is circular by nature. AF&PA member companies make essential products from renewable and recycle resources, generate renewable bioenergy and are committed to continuous improvement through the industry’s sustainability initiative—Better Practices, Better Planet 2030: Sustainable Products for a Sustainable Future. The forest products industry accounts for approximately four percent of the total U.S. manufacturing GDP, manufactures nearly $300 billion in products annually and employs approximately 950,000 people. The industry meets a payroll of approximately $60 billion annually and is among the top 10 manufacturing sector employers in 45 states. Visit AF&PA online at or follow us on Twitter @ForestandPaper.