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Clemson names collaboration facility for Ron & Katherine Harper

Monday, October 19, 2009

Press release from the issuing company

Charlotte, N.C. – Clemson University's Sonoco Institute has honored Ron and Katherine Harper, founders of Harper Corporation of America and a major influence in the printing industry, by designating a special facility in their name.

The Ronald & Katherine Harper Industry Collaboration Room has been created on the top floor of Clemson's Sonoco Institute for Packaging Design and Graphics. The facility was made possible by a $1.1 million gift from the Harpers to the Graphic Communications Department at the university.

"The Harpers have helped shape, contribute and support our efforts at Clemson, particularly in graphic communications, for decades," said Sam Ingram, graphics department chair. "And it is more than technology. Their belief in students, in education and their network, extending from the family out to the farthest reaches of the printing industry, have motivated us through their passion and expertise."

Ingram said the generosity of the Harpers will, "leave a lasting mark on Clemson students – in their careers, the industry we share and the future."

Under the guidance of the Harpers, Harper Corporation was the first participant in the Flexographic Technical Association's Flexo in High Schools and Colleges Program. Today that initiative -- focused on providing hands-on training for those considering a career in flexo -- has spread to secondary schools and universities across the U.S. and Canada and even to Argentina.

The new Collaboration Room will foster technology collaboration that brings together faculty and students.

Clemson President James F. Baker praised the Harpers for the impact they have made on his school. "Our graphic communications program has one of the highest placement rates at the university. Many years, it is 100 percent, and one of the reasons is the hands-on, real world experience they have received as students in the studios and labs and as interns in the industry," Baker said.




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