Profile: Gavin Borchardt

Gavin Borchardt

University of Wisconsin-Stout
B.S. Plastics Engineering
President for Society of Plastic Engineers– UW-Stout Chapter

I got into the study of plastics by taking a chance. I started college at UW-Marathon County where I began my general education and started taking the beginning engineering classes. I always liked math and science, so I thought engineering would be a good fit for me. I eventually knew I wanted to attend
UW-Stout, so I started researching the different engineering programs they had to offer. The plastics engineering degree stuck out to me as being unique. I had never really heard of such a degree, but after seeing the program had the highest average starting salary at UW-Stout I thought it would be a good career path to choose.

I certainly am glad I did choose the plastics engineering program. I transferred to UW-Stout the spring semester of my sophomore year so I would be on track to graduate with my degree in four years. Once I arrived, I quickly learned what plastics was all about. The material science, different processes, and the core engineering background it has provided me is definitely something that separates me from other professionals in the plastics profession.

I also got involved in UW-Stout’s Society of Plastics Engineers. This club focuses on exposing students to industry through company tours and guest speakers. I went on probably a dozen tours and attended a half dozen guest speaker events in my time here. These events have shown how some of the things we have learned in our classes are being applied in industry today. I also took on the role to set up SPE’s first annual golf outing fundraiser. The funds we raise help seniors attend ANTEC, a technical conference held every year where the senior students present their Capstone project (senior project). This event showcases the latest and greatest technology in the market and is really a neat experience for the seniors to attend.

My summer internship also was very rewarding in regards to expanding on the fundamentals that were taught in the classroom at UW-Stout. Seeing how the fundamentals of plastics and processing are then applied to a business and customers was really an awesome experience. I would recommend to anyone looking to try something new and get into an industry that has huge potential and upside – to pursue a career in plastics.