Anna Roland, a product technologist with Nestle Australia, has a bright future in Australia’s highly competitive packaging industry.
A past APPMA Scholarship Winner, Anna was all smiles after graduating last month with a Diploma in Packaging Technology.
The Australian Packaging and Processing Machinery Association (APPMA) has been running the scholarship program, in conjunction with the Australian Institute of Packaging (AIP), for the past 10 years.
Each year, one talented packaging technologist, designer or engineer in Australia gets the opportunity to complete a Diploma in Packaging Technology to the value of $9,000.
The Internationally Accredited Diploma in Packaging Technology prepares students to take responsibility for packaging operations at any level through the supply chain.
In this interview in the AIP’s April newsletter, Anna explains how the opportunity has helped to boost her career in the industry and offers advice to others considering following in her footsteps…
What did winning the APPMA Scholarship mean to you? How important are scholarships like this?
Working as a food technologist means that packaging is a part of daily life.
This opportunity to be awarded the APPMA annual Scholarship to undertake the Diploma in Packaging Technology meant that I had a chance to build my skills in another area that I work closely with. The APPMA Scholarship made undertaking the Diploma possible for me, where I otherwise would not have been able to enrol.
What does graduating from the Diploma in Packaging Technology mean to you?
Graduating with a Diploma in Packaging Technology has given me a broad background of knowledge in not just the types of packaging I work with, but all packaging substrates. Because the course is so thorough and requires you to do a hands-on project it really leaves you with a sense of accomplishment and that you can now work with packaging confidently.
How will you apply this knowledge moving forward?
I really enjoyed the root cause analysis approach and the emphasis placed on looking at the whole packaging process when problem solving part of Unit 3.
As we are continually changing or designing new products I can see that having a good understanding of packaging can help me support others in my team and result in better delivered projects.
Do you have any advice on why other people should complete the Diploma
in Packaging Technology?
I found that packaging was hardly covered at all within my undergraduate degree and upon entering the workforce it was truly rare to find anyone at the factory that understood packaging at all. There was a high reliance on suppliers that meant when there was an issue the whole line stopped until advice was given on what to do next. Given that every food product is packaged in some way I think the Diploma has really helped me to think about the product as a whole and can see that this has made me a better packaging technologist.
So where to from here for your career?
I plan to keep on making new products for now while I am lucky to work alongside some lovely packaging technologists who have been great at sharing knowledge with me and letting me help out with trials. Australia clearly can’t go without chocolate so I am having no trouble keeping busy for now.
The 2018 APPMA Scholarship winner will be announced at the 2018 PIDA Awards, to be held alongside the 2018 WorldStar Packaging Awards at the 2018 AIP National Conference on the May 2.