Cal Poly Art and Design Student Wins First Place in the AmeriStar Packaging Competition

Recent Art and Design graduate, Amber Chiang (Graphic Design concentration, class of 2020), and her teammate, John Dizon (Industrial Technology and Packaging, class of 2020) were awarded first place in the Institute of Packaging Professionals (IoPP) 2020 Student AmeriStar Packaging Awards. The Student AmeriStar Package Awards Competition honors the most innovative packages developed by students enrolled in college, university or vocational/technical school programs (undergraduate or graduate) throughout the United States.

Centauri N95 mask packaging, designed by Amber Chiang and John Dizon

The project, Centauri, is an innovative solution that addresses sustainability and safety concerns identified in current packaging for N95 respirators. Using a coating of silver nanoparticles as a virucidal agent, these masks' cellulose-based containers double as a storage unit with Coronavirus-cleaning properties. Centauri provides an out-of-this-world user experience and brand positioning unlike anything seen before. The project was completed in spring 2020, when Cal Poly transitioned to online delivery of all classes due to COVID-19. In spite of the challenges of collaborating virtually on the design and prototyping of a 3-dimensional package, Amber and John were able to successfully develop an elegant and functional design informed by research, creativity, and design thinking. They recently submitted the project to WorldStar Packaging Awards Competition, one of the major events of the World Packaging Organisation (WPO) and the pre-eminent international award in packaging.

Centauri N95 mask packaging (unboxing experience), designed by Amber Chiang and John Dizon

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