Esko donates software licenses to more than 40 US schools

Educating the future workforce for packaging, POP & wide format

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Esko software Share and Approve Photo Esko
Esko software Share and Approve Photo Esko

Esko has underlined its commitment to future generations of packaging industry workers with a multi-million dollar in-kind donation to support college and university students in their packaging engineering and technology studies. The global developer of integrated software and hardware solutions for the packaging, label and wide format sectors has extended its no-charge donation of software licenses to leading educational institutions across the US. The investment comes ahead of the new school year’s commencement and includes its market-leading structural design and production software platforms.

Melissa Plemen, Esko senior director of Inside Sales and Marketing, said the company was thrilled to continue supporting the next generation of packaging employees’ education with the donation. “We strongly believe in investing in the future of our industry and have supported schools across the country in this way for a number of years now,” said Plemen. “We’re delighted to be able to continue that with this latest significant donation in kind.”

Among the more-than-40 schools utilizing Esko software are Clemson University, Cal Poly University, Rochester Institute of Technology, Ryerson University, University of Wisconsin – Stout, Dunwoody College of Technology, Michigan State University and Indiana State University.

“It’s widely accepted that our sector has an aging workforce and a skills gap continues to become more and more apparent,” she explained. “As technological advances lead to changes within the sector, it’s vitally important that the industry supports the education and training of young people as we drive to develop and inspire the packaging experts of the future.

“Our commitment ensures today’s students are familiar with the latest Esko software utilized around the world to manage packaging and print processes, enabling them to be truly ready for work and have the skills required to enter the sector.”

Through this donation, packaging course tutors can now use the same software that develops 9 out of 10 retail packages for major brands today, and the breadth of software available enables them to teach a wide range of skill sets. Students will be able to design and create packaging systems from ideation to virtual and physical prototypes, preparing them for future roles in a diverse and fast-paced packaging industry.

Melissa Plemen, Esko senior director of Inside Sales and Marketing Photo Esko
Melissa Plemen, Esko senior director of Inside Sales and Marketing Photo Esko

“The global pandemic has underlined the important role technology already plays in keeping the packaging supply chain moving,” said Melissa. “As the future of the industry will inevitably involve further digitization, automation and connectivity, it is crucial that the workforce of tomorrow is as skilled and knowledgeable as possible before they embark on their career. We see this donation as part of our contribution to ensuring that vision becomes a reality, investing in not just the future of these young students, but also of our industry as a whole.”

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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