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Unique Perspective

The Student Advisory Committee hosted a professional development opportunity for the pulp and paper student body. The event consisted of a panel of alumni who answered questions about their experiences in the pulp and paper industry. The panel included graduates whose experiences provided the student body a better understanding of careers that support production of paper goods.

Diverse Perspective

The graduates represented market managers, water treatment representatives and a lab supervisor, to name a few. Not only did the alumni represent a broad range of career paths, but their graduation years ranged from 1979 to 2016. With such a wide span of expertise and experience, the alumni answered questions both prepared for the panel, and provided by the students. The panel answered questions in a cascading fashion and each gave a unique perspective for their response. Most of the panel related their personal experience into general advice which kept the panel interesting and kept the conversation moving. All the information was well received, except maybe the advice to wake up at 4:30 each morning to get a head start on the day, I remember a collective groan after that statement.

Foundation Perspective

Prior to the panel, students took a quiz that tested their knowledge of the Foundation and its purpose. The quiz was written by Jennifer Piercy, the Executive Director of the P&P Foundation, who didn’t hold back on the difficulty of the quiz. Questions about standing Foundations members, scholarships awarded, and its history caused a lot of students’ trouble.  There was a gift given to the student with the highest score.  Congratulations to Mason Umlauf for that honor!

Huge Success

The event was a huge success in both participation and content. You could tell the students were listening and taking in all the information being provided. With such a ‘production heavy’ curriculum many of the students were eager to learn about a different aspect of our industry. Nothing would be possible without the thorough planning of our faculty and the Foundation members. I would also like to thank the alumni for taking the time out of their schedules to answer our questions.  Thank you to Matthew Ashcraft, Jeffrey Buchanan, Ashleigh Eason, Blake Farmer, Harold Petke, Marty Wakefield and Phillip Westmoreland.

by guest blogger Tommy Keeshan