by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
FLEXO Magazine : August 2008
FTA TODAY Dunwoody Feeds the Need for Flexographers By Christian R. Bonawandt the Demand C onsider it Minnesota’s secret weapon in the fl exographic printing/converting industry. Since 1999, Dunwoody College of Technology (Minneapolis, MN) has been offer- ing a hands-on education in flexography. From the very begin- ning, the school has boasted a perfect or near-perfect placement of all its graduates. Does it help that the school is located in one of the great epicenters of fl exo? Of course: General Mills, 3M and more print shops and prepress providers than there is room in these pages to mention are headquartered in the St. Paul/ Minneapolis region. The area has a strong demand for educated and intelligent packaging and printing professionals. Dunwoody is churning out skilled alumni to meet that demand. Conversely, students at Dunwoody gain from the school’s central location through frequent field trips, guest lecturers, expo- sure to the latest technologies, and a wildly successful internship program. The quality of Dunwoody’s flexo program is renown throughout the Twin Cities. In fact, for the Fall 2008 quarter, en- rollment has more than doubled, with 60+ students entering the program. EVOLVING EDUCATION Printing education at Dunwoody College of Technology began with the founding of the school in 1914. “At that point, it was all letterpress and linotype,” said Kent Esby, bindery and digital printing instructor. He noted that the school added offset in 1962. “In 1999, we brought in the first flexo press.” 82 F LEXO For many years, Dunwoody held a contract with Printing Industries of Minnesota, through which the school attained much of its equipment. In 2002, the contract ended, and many of the offset suppliers pulled out their equipment. But Mark Andy and other flexo industry supporters maintained their relationship with Dunwoody. “That’s how fl exography stayed here,” said Esby. “At first, we only had one flexo student take the course. But soon peo- ple began to realize that the flexo students graduated and became press operators, while the offset students went on to be feeder operators. Soon we only had four offset and 10 flexo students. Then, for two years, we didn’t have one offset student.” Today, Dunwoody teaches flexo, digital, and wide-format print- ing, as well as prepress and graphic design—the latter of which was added in 2006. The vast majority of graduates go into the fl exographic industry. “We occasionally have prepress students who go out into offset operations, but we haven’t put out an offset operator since 2002,” said Pete Rivard, prepress instructor. “Digital and wide format is growing more and more as well. Structural design is a growth area for folding carton work.” Shawn Oetjen, flexography instructor, said that students in the design program learn a great deal about designing for flexo and other print processes. “That’s a key concept because they will make stuff and then run it on the press. So, the strength of the program is that they get to see how it looks when it comes off the press.” AUGUS T 20 0 8 www. f l e x o g r a p h y. o r g Meeting
Flexo Sustainable Fall 2008