APTech & Konica Minolta announce winners of 2020 student design competition

Winners receive cash prizes

One of the winners of the student design competition

The Association for PRINT Technologies (APTech) and Konica Minolta Business Solutions USA, have announced the winners of the 2020 student design competition. The 2020 competition themed, “Mail Matters!” challenged students to design a personalized tangible mail piece complete with a call-to-action. This year’s entries ran the gamut of possible direct mail items including postcards, brochures, booklets, envelopes, and folding carton mailers.

Now in its twelfth year, the annual contest calls on students to demonstrate their knowledge of designing for and producing a printed product; executing the steps from design concept to file preparation to printed output. Entries were judged on a number of criteria including adherence to the guidelines set forth in the contest description and cohesiveness of the design throughout the entire piece.

As many students were unable to produce a final printed and finished piece for this year’s contest due to Covid-19, Konica Minolta supported this program by producing several of the final pieces for consideration. The success of this year’s program is due in great part to Konica Minolta’s generosity.

An independent panel of industry judges chose six winners from among the 46 entries—three at the secondary school level and three at the post-secondary school level. Winners at the secondary school level were Mia Passarella, Walton High School, Marietta, GA (Dan Campagna); Mario Braxton, Jr, Gary D Bixhorn Technical Center, Bellport, NY (Talia Mochi-Cliffe); and Abby Carter, Mattoon High School, Mattoon, IL (Laura Roberts)

Winners at the post-secondary school level were Mandana Yaghini, Saddleback College, Mission Viejo, CA (Steve Gonsowski); Manal Alfehaily, Saddleback College, Mission Viejo, CA (Steve Gonsowski); and Vivian Prescott, OSUIT, Okmulgee, OK (Mary Miller)

First-place winners will each receive a US$ 2,000 check. The second-place winners will each be awarded US$ 1,500, and the third-place winners will each receive US$ 1,000.

“A printed product has the potential to make a huge impact, “says Thayer Long, president of APTech. “These students demonstrate the creativity, technical know-how and marketing savvy needed to make a printed mailer a success. We congratulate the winners and all those who participated in this year’s competition.”

The winning entries will be featured on the APTech website and on our APTech social media channels.

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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