For the past 15 years, Millersville University Graphics and Packaging Technology students have competed in various contests, often yielding successful results. Recently, students Sydney Hargrove, Reagan Steinberg, Kaylena Travitz and Ben Troyano, won awards in two different competitions.
“These awards are prestigious in our field because of the competition with other universities and the industry recognition that students receive,” says Dr. Mark Snyder, professor of applied engineering, safety & technology at Millersville University. The University participates regularly and submits the best work from students within the program.
Neographics is one of the nation’s largest regional graphic communication contests in which graphic arts, packaging, converting, design, and publishing excellence are selected and showcased. “Neographics is a regional competition for industry (companies compete against each other) but it also has a college division for the competition,” says Snyder. This year, all winning entries will be showcased at the Neographics Awards Ceremony and Exhibition on October 5th in Philadelphia.
Hargrove and Steinberg were awarded for their submissions in the Neographics sponsored by the Print and Graphic Communications Association. Hargrove’s screen-printed T-shirt “Posterization” earned a Franklin Award for Excellence in the Student/College category, and Steinberg’s Digital “Variable Data Postcard” earned a Franklin Award for Excellence and the Best of Category in the Student/College category. The two tiers of recognition for students are the Franklin Awards for Excellence, given to pieces selected on their own merits; and the Best of Category, in which Franklin Award winners compete against each other for a unanimous vote by the panel of judges.
About receiving her award, Hargrove said, “I am deeply honored and genuinely thankful for the Franklin Honorable Mention Award. It is a motivating factor to continue pushing the boundaries of creativity and innovation in the world of print manufacturing.”
Travitz and Troyano’s “Ville Hardware” design was selected by the Association of Independent Corrugated Converter’s Student Packaging Design Competition committee as the second-place winner in the structure category. The team will receive a cash award in the amount of $250 which is divided among team members. In addition to the monetary award, both Travitz and Troyano will each receive an engraved plaque commemorating their win in the competition.
“I am beyond excited about receiving second place in the 2023 AICC Student Design Competition along with Ben Troyano,” says Travitz. “One of my goals for my senior year was to place in the 2023 AICC Student Design Competition. An added benefit is that we also beat out Clemson University. Since Dr. Snyder use to teach there, it is even more of an honor to receive this award.”
Troyano described the project that he and Travitz entered as follows: “The 2023 AICC Student Design Competition tasked my partner, Kaylena and I to come up with a package design for a “hardware shipper” that contains a hammer, 4 lightbulbs, and a box of nails.
Because this unique challenge was my first experience with package design, my partner designed most of the structure, while I made the graphics. Winning 2nd place as two students over much larger schools in the competition like Clemson was a big accomplishment and I hope to compete again next year.”
Often, competitions like the one sponsored by AICC will present a technical design problem that student groups from all over the country have to solve in their own way. The timing of contests is often planned so the problems can be built into a course curriculum as a semester-long group project. Snyder stated, “We choose the best results from our program at the end of a semester and submit them to compete with other universities.”
“AICC is a significant competition for college students at universities with packaging-related programs,” says Snyder.