Department of Packaging and Graphic Media Science


The packaging and graphic media science department prepares students to excel in graphic media and communications, and to serve a broad range of industries in need of innovative thinkers and creative leaders. Through multimedia approaches, students learn to create moving graphic experiences, and are prepared to earn rewarding careers at the intersection of technology, design, and business.

Our programs’ multidisciplinary curriculums explores print, web, packaging design, interactive graphics, mobile apps, functional printing, and smart media. Through a hands-on curriculum, students learn to create and manage innovative, cross-media applications, challenge creative barriers, and break into today’s interactive graphic media industry. Experiential opportunities allow students to work with new technologies and applications, preparing them for exciting and dynamic careers. Graduates of the packaging and graphic media science department are helping organizations implement and manage the integration of traditional and emerging media technologies. They are well-positioned for careers as graphic media change-makers, bringing visionary expertise to production management, technology specializations, and quality assurance. Students learn-by-doing, and bring graphic projects from concept through inception and delivery. The skills earned are those sought by nearly all companies; notably, printers, brand owners, media companies, communication agencies, and technology firms.

RIT’s packaging science program, offered within the department, was established in 1972 and is one of the most unique and respected in the country. One of only a handful in the nation to offer the program, the discipline provides students exposure to laboratory experience and real-life problem solving. Embedded into the program is the required full-time co-op with a company, and RIT is the only institute in the country that requires all packaging science students to experience this opportunity. This allows students to develop their professional skills, expand their real-world experience, and, most importantly, broaden their industry contacts. RIT's relationship with industry leaders and the skills students obtain in development, sales, and purchasing results in professional careers within this multi-billion dollar industry. This relationship, along with the faculty being packaging professionals, ensures that students acquire the most current technological knowledge base.


Dedicated hands-on technology spaces to support learning and research


Paid co-op experiences provide graduates with real-world experience at major domestic and international companies


Active alumni working in industry and poised to help students and alumni in their career objectives


Real industry student projects each year


Possible focus areas: sustainable packaging, packaging design, biopolymers, shock and vibration, pharmaceutical, medical products, and food packaging


International Safe Transit Association Certified Packaging Dynamics and Research Lab

Latest News

Featured Work

Featured Profiles

Undergraduate Programs

With a faculty committed to excellence, our undergraduate programs provide a significant theoretical background coupled with extensive design and project experiences throughout the curriculum. Mathematics and the physical sciences are introduced in a just-in-time fashion while technical courses are incorporated every semester.

Packaging science students are introduced to the multidimensional packaging field each semester. Progressing through the curriculum, projects become larger and design experiences more intense. By the final year of the program, students participate in realistic project-based design challenges as they ready themselves to be self-sufficient in the workplace. Cooperative educational work is the hallmark of an RIT education, and the packaging science undergraduate program includes at least two of these experiences combined with faculty research opportunities.

At the core of the interdisciplinary media arts and technology BS program is a balance of the creative, business, and technical aspects of graphic communication. The course of study allows you to explore educational areas within and outside the program — including ample chances to connect with industry — to provide a thorough experience that prepares you for a world of possibilities.

Pursue an innovative packaging science degree where you’ll learn how to design, develop, and test sustainable product packaging for a variety of industries including food, medical products, and consumer goods.

Learn more about the Packaging Science BS program 

In this graphic communication major, you'll become a highly-skilled communication professional who will create robust marketing materials for the communication, publishing, and packaging graphics industries.

Learn more about the Print and Graphic Media Technology BS program 

Graduate Programs

The STEM-based Master of Science degree in print and graphic media science is offered by the Department of Packaging and Graphic Media Science. It offers students seeking an advanced degree the opportunity to join a community of learners and researchers in a dynamic field with robust career opportunities. This thesis-based program involves three semesters of coursework, followed by thesis work where students work together with research professors in world-class facilities. Recent thesis topics have included technology adoption, quality control, instrument and metric analysis, management topics, and process capabilities. These embrace areas such as digital printing, textile printing, color measurement, packaging and publishing as well as gravure, flexographic and lithographic printing technologies. Resulting thesis work is published and often presented at academic conferences. Students successfully completing the MS in Print and Graphic Media Science find themselves well prepared for study at the doctoral level as well as positioned to work at management-level positions in industry.

The Master of Science degree in packaging science is designed to educate packaging professionals to become experts in the packaging development process. Students learn how to select raw materials, design, and create packaging to withstand environmental hazards during transportation, and to create aesthetically pleasing packages to pique consumer interest. Through a combination of theoretical and application-focused learning experiences, students gain comprehensive knowledge related to packaging design, package testing, product marketing, project management, and quality control.

The master’s in packaging science enables you to create visually stunning, environmentally friendly packaging that’s functional and durable enough to be aesthetically pleasing and sustainable for the environmental while also withstanding the stresses of distribution and transportation.

Learn more about the Packaging Science MS program 

A media science degree that explores how technology and innovation are changing the graphic communications industry.

Learn more about the Print and Graphic Media Science MS program 

Minors and Immersions

The flexible packaging minor addresses flexible containment systems, one of the fastest growing segments of the packaging materials industry. The manufacturing and use of flexible containment systems requires specific expertise and knowledge of appropriate technology for implementation. Flexible pouches and containment systems are considered more sustainable for replacing glass bottles and jars, plastic bottles, and metal cans. They use materials more efficiently and reduce the weight and costs associated with physical distribution activities.

Learn more about the Flexible Packaging Minor program 

The media arts and technology minor provides students with a five-course sampling of the media arts and technology major. After completing the required course, students may customize their selection of elective courses from diverse offerings related to media production, media architecture, media strategy, and media management.

Learn more about the Media Arts and Technology Minor program 

The packaging science minor offers courses covering a broad range of packaging activities, including development/design, testing, marketing, and production. Related legal, economic, and environmental/sustainability concerns are also addressed. Students from majors such as engineering, engineering technology, multidisciplinary studies, management, marketing, international business, industrial design, and print media could all benefit from the packaging science minor.

Learn more about the Packaging Science Minor program 

Student Resources

The Department of Packaging and Graphic Media Science offers a variety of resources for our students by program: