School of Packaging


Gayle Cohen
Email: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Phone: 517-353-8966


Some form of packaging is involved in the production and movement to market of nearly every item of consumption in today’s economy. Packaging has an impact on most functions in manufacturing firms, so graduates may work in package development, production, quality control, research, sales, purchasing, marketing, testing, distribution or technical services. 

The MSU bachelor of science degree in packaging is a rigorous technical and science-heavy program incorporating every aspect of packaging, from materials and process through systems development and testing. Laboratories are an integral component of the program, providing students with many hands-on learning experiences. 

The packaging major is founded on the basic principles of physics, chemistry, mathematics and materials science. Combined with a business cognate, these courses provide students with the cross-functional skills needed to play an active role in the industry. 

Students can individualize elective choices for more focused study in food packaging, medical and pharmaceutical packaging, automotive packaging, distribution, robotics, package design, hazardous materials, and packaging and the environment. An internship, co-op or study abroad can also count toward packaging electives. 

Enrollment in the packaging major is limited at junior standing. Factors used for consideration for admission to the major include: 

  • Cumulative GPA
  • Completion of Chemistry 141, Mathematics 132 and 133, and Physics 231 with a minimum 2.0 grade in each course

Core areas of study

  • Technical principles for packaging
  • Materials (glass, plastic, paper and metals in packaging)
  • Computer applications
  • Packaging processes and systems
  • Distribution processes and systems
  • Distribution dynamics

Career opportunities

Job placement for packaging undergraduates is above 90 percent. Most students participate in at least one internship or co-op in the packaging industry prior to graduation.

Study abroad programs

  • Packaging in England (each summer)
  • Additional special topics programs offered on alternate summers

Course listing

To read more about this major and the classes required for it, visit: