Earlier this year, the Flexible Packaging Association’s (FPA) Emerging Leadership Council (ELC) launched a video series in which ELC members tout the benefits of a career in flexible packaging—as well as a bright future.
Known as “Come Grow With Us,” the campaign is intended “to help promote and attract new talent to the flexible packaging industry,” according to FPA. In three videos of three minutes or less, young professionals talk about current and future opportunities because of industry growth and retirements, suggesting that job security and promotions will be part of the future, too.
Virtual Summer Internship Program
The committee has been making FPA member companies aware of the Virtual Summer Internship Program that has a similar recruitment goal. It will start in June. The summer program will feature guest speakers, as well as small-group discussions with industry experts and managers about market trends and career opportunities. The first program last summer attracted 35 students from 18 companies, organizers said, adding that they expect greater participation this year.
For companies interested in the new program, contact the program leaders: Abbey Phillips, senior product development engineer, American Packaging Corporation, at email@example.com; or Apurva Shah, senior market manager, Charter Next Generation, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The ‘Come Grow With Us’ Campaign
Found on YouTube and FPA’s website, the videos were developed by the ELC’s recruitment subcommittee, which is one of four ELC subcommittees. (The others are advocacy, education, and leadership development.)
“There is so much change happening. It’s exciting,” says Kasie Fairbarn, formerly with PAXXUS, Inc., now global account manager with Windmoeller & Hoelscher Corporation, in a video titled “Growing the Industry,” which discusses how the industry is creating opportunities by addressing the challenge of sustainability. “Every day, I am reading new articles about companies coming up with the next best thing that can be recycled or that has recycled content in it. These are the ways that I feel that I am making a positive impact to this industry and on our world.”
Fairbarn and Shah are two of the ELC members featured in the videos. Others include Weston Harcourt, category manager, Sonoco Flexible Packaging; Amy Presher, sales manager, Profol; Evan Arnold, vice president, business development, Glenroy, Inc.; and ELC co-chair Jonathan Quinn, director of market development and sustainability, Pregis. (Adrianne Tipton, senior vice president, innovation, Novolex, is the other ELC co-chair).
“The flexible packaging industry is really a hidden gem,” Presher says in a video titled “Why Flexible Packaging?,” which has committee members discussing their career paths. “It’s a large industry. It’s a global industry. But it is also a very small world, so I get to work alongside those that I went to college with or those that I have worked with in the past. And so those people are not only business relationships that are cheering you on and supporting you, but they really become lifelong friendships.”
A third video is titled “The Future of Flexible Packaging,” where ELC members talk about the industry’s potential.
“What keeps me really excited about the future is that there is an incredible opportunity for young people,” Shah says in that video. “I think it is no secret that we have got a lot of incredible expertise around the industry that is on the cusp of retirement and kind of hanging up their jersey, to use that analogy. In the next five to 10 years, the industry is going to need players to play and to jump into bigger and better roles and want to make bigger impacts on whatever it is that the company or that the industry is tackling at that point.”
Thomas A. Barstow is senior editor of FlexPack VOICE®.