PITTSBURG, Kan. — Changing times demand changing technologies, and Linda Grilz is doing her part to keep Pittsburg State University students up-to-date in the printing industry.
For her work in establishing a variable and digital data printing class, Grilz was awarded the 2009 Innovation in Higher Education Award by the Electronic Document Systems
Foundation this week at an international conference held in Philadelphia. Grilz, an instructor in graphics and imaging technology and a Crawford County commissioner, said she started her Variable and Digital Data Printing course last fall without any software or equipment, knowing that students would need to learn about this increasingly popular printing method.
"Variable data means personalization," Grilz said. "Each piece that comes off your output device is different related to the needs or interests or any sort of data you have gathered about your customers."
Grilz forged partnerships with companies such as Printable and BCC Software, who each donated several licenses of their printing and mailing software. After requisitioning a Xerox printer and a spare room in the Kansas Technology Center, she had a fully functioning variable data printing press.
"At this point in time we're providing a basic foundation," Grilz said. "Really what this does is open up our students' minds to being marketers." Grilz said PSU students familiar with variable data techniques will be able to help their employers get higher returns on fewer, more targeted mailings.
Dr. Jim Sours, chairman of the Department of Graphics and Imaging Technologies, noticed Grilz' work and nominated her for the EDSF award. Grilz was one of only five selected for the honor this year.
"It's exciting to be able to help students and prepare them for some of the new technologies," Grilz said. "Some are still in the development stages now, but they will face them as they get into their careers. It's an honor to be recognized for efforts in that direction."
For more information, call the Department of Graphics and Imaging Technology at (620) 235-4419.