The Canadian Corrugated and Containerboard Associ­ation is proud to once again support Kitchener, Ontario based Conestoga College’s Packaging Engineering Tech­nician program, which is designed to help students pursue careers in the packaging industry.

For many students entering college today, the prima­ry concern is whether their chosen field will provide for a fulfilling and lifelong career that will support them and their families upon graduation. Conestoga’s Packaging En­gineering Technician program is targeted to meet those very concerns and can boast that a whopping 99 percent of their graduates’ secure employment after completing the program. As Luis Garcia, the Chair Institute of Food Processing Technology and Trades and Apprenticeship
(Millwright), explains, “Students that finish the Packaging Engineering Technician program walk into a job right after school – not minimum wage jobs either, they get good paying jobs … $20- $25 an hour.”

And this is one reason why CCCA is so supportive of the program. Like many trade programs in Canada, careers in the packag­ing industry are in high demand and will be for many years, particularly for those who have been through this program. These high­ly specialized jobs are great jobs that provide lots of variety and require a high skills level that can only be achieved through the train­ing provided through this program.
Aside from the great compensation and job opportunities that come from graduat­ing from the program, CCCA recognizes the high-quality curriculum and standards taught in the Packaging Engineering Technician pro­gram. Students receive training in the struc­tural design of many different packaging materials such as metal, glass, plastic, paper and corrugated cardboard.

Further, the program helps provide stu­dents with the understanding, techniques and skills to properly succeed in the packag­ing industry. According to Garcia, graduates of the program have helped students to work for some of the industry leaders, like Cas-cades Containerboard Packaging and sev­eral other large corporations. The program is filled with some of the most experienced teachers who have been part of the industry for 10 to 15 years. And as an added bonus, one of the most attractive features of this program is that there is also a co-op option, allowing students an even greater chance to gain hands-on experience from seasoned workers in the industry. This combination of education and experience is what develops a career within the industry.

The two-year, Ontario college accredited diploma pro­gram is recognized and endorsed by the Canadian Corru­gated and Containerboard Association and, as Garcia ex­plains, the Conestoga Packaging Engineering Technician program is “a one-of-a-kind program in Canada at a time when there is such a large demand for employees with this skill and there just aren’t enough people going into this industry.”

This article was originally published in the Board Converting News, September 16, 2019 issue