School of Packaging strategic pillars

Director Daum discusses three priorities: to renovate the Packaging Building, effort to increase diversity, equity and inclusion; and to increase number of faculty and financial support for graduate students.

The School of Packaging Building Renovation is one of three strategic pillars the school is focusing on. Above is a rendering of the new Packaging Building after renovation.

Since my arrival at the School of Packaging we have focused on three strategic pillars to re-establish our position as the premier packaging education program.

School of Packaging Building Renovation

First is the effort to renovate our packaging building. Originally built in 1964 and last renovated in 1987, our facility is in desperate need of updating and modernizing. Not only do we need great facilities to properly educate our students and attract the best faculty, we need a facility that speaks to the thought leadership and exceptional talent the School has produced over the years. I want our facility to be a gathering place for the best and brightest packaging minds, and a place that brings together academia, industry, government and non-government leaders to solve the toughest packaging challenges. I also want you as our alumni to be proud of your School and be excited to bring your family and friends back to where your successful career began. You probably heard this summer about Amcor’s $10.8M commitment to the School, half of which will go towards our new building renovation. Planning for the renovation is moving along rapidly, and assuming we continue forward at this pace, we expect to break ground in Spring of 2022. For those of you who have given to our renovation effort, thank you for your generosity and please accept my heartfelt gratitude.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

The second strategic pillar update is our effort in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. As part of a larger strategy encompassing recruiting, retaining and connecting students with alumni, I am very pleased to announce a new program manager position has been approved and posted (MSU job #746212). This new position will report directly to me with a goal of expanding the diversity of our undergraduate student population. The position will focus on organizing efforts to promote the School, recruit diverse students from across the state, and to help the School partner with and take advantage of the many University resources that are available for faculty, staff and students. We aim to have the most inclusive and diverse pool of packaging students ready for industry.

Increase faculty and financial support for graduate students

The third strategic pillar is to increase the number of faculty and financial support for graduate students.

  • Through Amcor’s groundbreaking gift, we will be adding a new prestigious position, the Amcor Endowed Chair in Packaging Sustainability.
  • A second faculty position has also been created to focus specifically on cellulosic materials (ie. paper/paperboard/corrugated/wood).
  • In addition, we soon will have lecture positions posted that will focus on specific topics such as RFID and chemical/hazmat packaging.

Check our job postings page for more information coming soon on these new positions.

The School has a tremendous legacy and foundation, yet there still remains much work to do toward extending our leadership status. Thank you for joining me in this effort, and thank you for your continued support and enthusiasm for the School.

Go Green!

Dr. Matt Daum
Director and Professor, School of Packaging

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