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Clemson breaks ground for packaging

Clemson University broke ground recently for a new 28,000-sq-ft building to house components of the packaging science and graphic communications departments.

It will be the future home of the Sonoco Institute of Packaging Design and Graphics (see
The building will be named for a major Clemson donor: Harris A. Smith of Atlanta, former chairman, president, and chief executive officer of Smith Container Corp. Smith sold his family-owned rigid packaging company, headquartered in Atlanta, to a global packaging company a few years ago. He decided to invest in higher education to support the packaging industry his family helped define. Smith has made gifts and pledges totaling $3.5 million to Clemson.

Sonoco Products Co. of Hartsville, SC, has contributed $2.5 million for the academic building that will house the Sonoco Institute of Packaging Design and Graphics and related programs. The three-level building will include studios, labs, and offices that will serve up to 500 students every year.

The institute will make contributions at three levels: as an academic stimulator, an industry resource for training and research, and a driving force to bring new technologies and innovations to the packaging and graphics markets. The focus of these activities will be in areas that are both of significant interest to the packaging and graphics industries and are in fields that the university has a lot to offer: environmental sustainability, printed electronics, consumer experience, materials development, and packaging development and workflow and digital printing exploration.

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