At the end of October 2014, I will have my Diploma in Packaging Technology, thus allowing myself to officially be called a Packaging Technologist.
During the 10 month course, there are 5 tests, 2 exams and 1 project that one has to complete (and pass) in order for your diploma to be awarded. Of the 5 tests, they only take your top 4 test marks. Thank God.
I failed test 2.
And not by like 1% or something riduculous like that. I mean properly failed. As in 35.5% fail. Now, if IPSA had no integrity, determination and motivation like our education system here in sunny South Africa, that 35.5% would have actually been a pass! I would have actually SURPASSED the minimum requirement of 33%!
Well they don’t, and I didn’t.
But it’s ok, because I did actually pass the first test, and I plan on passing tests 3-5, as well as both exams. Where the real drama comes in, is with the project that I have to submit.
We were given our topic on the 24th of March 2014. Only today have I decided on what product to base my project on. It’s due on the 7th of August 2014.
I just couldn’t decide which South African product to base my project on, because I honestly didn’t know! I’m the type of person that battles with decision making; tell me that you need to package pineapple pieces to optimise their shelf-life and BOOM! Done! Don’t tell me to pick out a product from the thousands, if not millions of products out there, on which to base my project! Late last week I found a product on which to base my project on, only to find out yesterday that the packaging material that I wanted to repackage the product into, was not recyclable. Oops, seeing as the theme is ‘Design for Recycling’.
I did a little shopping last night, and without even realising it, or doing it on purpose, I found my product. Sitting on my couch last night after supper, munching on the biscuits that I had bough just a few hours earlier, I found myself looking at the packaging thinking to myself, hang on a tooting minute! This is so not recyclable! Ding ding ding!!! The instant relief that I felt when I realised that I had FINALLY found my project topic, was amazing. But then came the next hard part; how on earth am I going to redesign this into packaging that IS recyclable?! Thank goodness for not burning bridges, and for leaving my previous job with a smile on my face, because I contacted my former boss this morning who gave me some AMAZING ideas, and also reminded me of some suppliers that I used to deal with whilst working for him. After contacting him I contacted my one former supplier, and I’ll know by this Friday as to whether or not they’ll be willing to assist me. It’s pretty much a done thing; they will help, but I gotta do it right, ask permission etc.
So now the research starts; the packaging properties of the 2 materials that I’ve decided to use, the machinery required, how recyclable these 2 materials are and if South Africa’s current recycling capabilities can handle the recycling of these 2 packaging materials. But it’s ok; these next 2 and a bit months are going to be full of stress and long hours and late nights, but at least I know what they hell I’m doing now!
And I can’t wait to get my diploma at the end of October!