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Alumni and Friends

Joshua Lambert ‘19 Looks Back on His Paper Science and Engineering Experience

Joshua Lambert poses with his dog in front of a mountain.

Joshua Lambert graduated in 2019 with a bachelor’s degree in paper science and engineering. He now works as a papermaking operations manufacturing engineer at Proctor & Gamble.

During his time at NC State, Lambert was involved in the student chapter of the Technical Association of the Pulp and Paper Industry, also known as TAPPI.

We recently spoke with Lambert to learn more about his passion for paper science and engineering and how the College of Natural Resources prepared him for his career. Check out the Q&A below.

What does a typical day in your job look like?

A typical day involves doing work that is focused on improving the safety and reliability of both our core teams and the operation. My focus is creating, improving and maintaining systems that aim to make our work safer and easier for the core teams.  

What inspired you to study paper science and engineering?

I have always had a natural curiosity on how things are made. The Paper Science and Engineering program at NC State allows students to be hands-on and to truly dive into the science and understanding about what paper is and how it is made. 

The program brought that feeling of community and family back to me that I had been missing since moving to Raleigh. Since it is one of the smaller programs at NC State, you truly feel like you are part of a large family that keeps growing each year.

What impact are you making through your position?

I believe my impact is making the lives easier for the core teams that run the operation in our plant. My impact is making sure our core teams have the resources and support they need to make their job as safe and easy as possible. Other impacts are, of course, bringing products like Charmin and Bounty to life.

How did the College of Natural Resources prepare you for your current position?

By making sure I bring my best self to work each day. NC State, specifically the Paper Science and Engineering program, prepared me for the early mornings, the hands-on lab work and running the paper machine in the late afternoon or early morning. There are some evenings where I am problem solving and it takes me back to the late nights in the TAPPI lounge with my peers. Those were great times; they taught me how to work with others, see other perspectives and listen more.

What advice do you have for current NC State students?

Learn how to work well with others. Understand that everyone looks at life through a different lens and accept that. Learn that it is OK to fall on your own sword sometimes for the greater good of the group. Listen to people, swallow your pride, make mistakes and learn from them, study how your professors interact with each other; they are great examples of how to be a leader.