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Cal Poly Graphic Communication Student Team Wins First Place at Graphic Arts Conference


By Nicole Troy


Cal Poly TAGA 2023
The TAGA executive board, alongside
faculty advisor Rachel Ma, pose for a
group photo with the Helmut Kipphan Cup. 

Cal Poly won the prestigious Helmut Kipphan Cup at the annual conference of the Technical Association of the Graphic Arts (TAGA), held March 12-15 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. 

Cal Poly’s TAGA team, comprised of seven graphic communication students, was awarded first place for its technical journal, a high-quality student-produced publication that involves a wide range of complex printing and binding processes. Scoring is based on technical writing, design, production quality and digital enhancement. 

All seven students attended the conference and accepted the award including Cal Poly TAGA President Amber Gourley; Vice President Mary Wood; Communication Coordinator Kailey Latin; Design Coordinator Hailey Honegger; Augmented Reality Coordinator Kendra Roberson; Web Coordinator Annali Jacobs; and Production Coordinator Emily Kovarik.  

“I’ve been impressed by a team of hardworking, motivated and committed students,” said TAGA faculty advisor and graphic communication Assistant Professor Rachel Ma. “Producing this award-winning journal has been an empowering experience that bridges Learn by Doing with industry collaborations.” 

The students began work on their journal last September, working hard to conceptualize, design, and produce the journal centered on accessibility. This year’s journal, Vol. 40, was inspired by Swiss design tradition — including modernism trends of other countries such as geometric shapes of Russian Constructivism, the notion of form following function in Germany’s Bauhaus and the simplicity of De Stijl in the Netherlands. The final work includes five student research articles, original illustrations, augmented reality experiences and intuitive packaging design.  

The team worked with augmented reality software company RealityBLU and Descript to bring the journal to life. Donations from the Printing Industries Association, Inc. and Visual Media Alliance allowed the team to participate in the in-person conference and local printing company Poor Richard's Press shared their production facility with the team to produce custom packaging. 

Learn more about TAGA’s award winning journal and view Vol. 40 at


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