Skip to main content

Paperboard Packaging Alliance Releases 2021 Student Design Challenge Finalists Promoting Community Relief Organizations

(202) 463-2587;

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

WASHINGTON – The Paperboard Packaging Alliance (PPA) today announced the finalists of its 2021 Student Design Challenge, a competition to foster awareness and appreciation of paperboard packaging with university educators and the next generation of packaging design decision-makers. With impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic in mind, as well as the role that the paperboard packaging industry plays in local communities, the design theme was to create an entry for a community relief organization.

Student design projects from the following schools were named as finalists:

  • California Polytechnic State University, Sweet Pea
  • Fashion Institute of Technology, Super Kit
  • Rochester Institute of Technology, Super Sibs Lemon-Aid Package 

Additional acknowledgments were announced for the following entries:

  • 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 is an annual competition for university students in leading packaging design programs to show off their creative talent, design skills and innovative approaches to meet real-world customer needs and marketing scenarios. The finalists are invited to attend the Paperboard Packaging Council’s (PPC) Spring Outlook and Strategies conference in Denver, Colorado, March 9-11, 2022. There, during a special reception, the final placements will be announced. Each team will have the opportunity to present their submissions and showcase their talents from the stage. PPC’s conference brings together over 200 paperboard packaging professionals, providing the students with access to future potential employers, networking opportunities and much more.

“The Student Design Challenge is proof that the future is bright for our industry,” said Heidi Brock, AF&PA President & CEO. “Teams of students used creativity and collaboration to make innovative concepts highlighting opportunities for paperboard packaging to contribute to the important work of community relief organizations during the pandemic. These young people are gaining real-world skills and preparing for careers in the circular economy as they look to make a difference in our world. Congratulations to each of this year’s participants on their impressive designs.”

“Each year, we’re captivated by the hard work and ingenuity of our next generation of packaging professionals,” said Paperboard Packaging Council President Ben Markens. “We’re honored to support this competition and create opportunities for students to connect with future employers. PPC serves to elevate the paperboard packaging industry and help jumpstart student careers.”   

For more information, visit

# # # 

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

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 recyclable 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 5% of the total U.S. manufacturing GDP, manufactures about $350 billion in products annually and employs about 925,000 people. The industry meets a payroll of about $65 billion annually and is among the top 10 manufacturing sector employers in 43 states. Visit AF&PA online at or follow us on Twitter @ForestandPaper