Bioresource Science & Engineering (BSE), formerly
called Paper Science & Engineering (PSE), was established in
the School of Forest Resources as a degree program at the University
of Washington in 1965. The Washington Pulp & Paper Foundation (WPPF),
a not for profit organization, was incorporated in 1968.
The purpose of the WPPF
is to attract excellent students to BSE and thus provide the
industry and its allied industries with a pipeline of highly
qualified technical graduates who understand and are dedicated
to the industry.
The BSE graduates "hit the ground
running", have made numerous contributions, and have an exceptional
record of commitment. Of the more than 400 students who have graduated
from the BSE program, about 350 have chosen careers in the pulp,
paper and allied industries.
BSE is a fully accredited, rigorous
engineering degree program. Accreditation is through ABET (Accreditation
Board for Engineering and Technology). As an engineering program, its
curriculum is related to other engineering degree programs at the University,
especially Chemical Engineering. (For example, the first two years
are very similar for all of the engineering disciplines, both at the
University of Washington and the State's community colleges.)
BSE is the only such program west of the Mississippi
River. Eight other U.S. colleges and universities have similar
BSE degree programs exist in a number
of countries where there is a significant pulp and paper industry.
The other U.S. schools have associated Foundations that are similar
Academic scholarships offered by the Foundation are
the principal tool for attracting excellent students. For the 2002-2003
academic year, these scholarships provided full tuition to resident
students ($4636 per year). The scholarships are renewable year-to year
subject to academic performance, and are extended to cover a double
degree with Chemical Engineering for students who are so interested.
Other attractions of BSE and the Foundation are:
- summer jobs and co-op experiences
- small class sizes
- a department that cares
- nearly 100% success in placing graduates over its 35 plus year
The funds for the
BSE scholarships and operating costs
of the Foundation are provided by annual contributions from member
companies and returns from the Foundation's endowment. Forty-two member
companies contributed a total of about $112,000 in 2002. Additionally,
one company contributed $20,000 to scholarships but chose not to be
a member. The 2002 member companies represented the following business
areas: 8, pulp and producers; 11, suppliers; 10, vendors; 7, engineering,
construction and consulting. As of 2002, the Foundation's endowment
was approximately $1.5 million in value and generated annual funds
of about $75,000.
BSE's competitive advantage for
the industry is that there is no other way in which we can so effectively
bring dedicated, talented and highly qualified young people into
this industry and its allied industries.
While enrollment is down
at engineering schools across the nation, the BSE
degree programs assure that the industry will have
a continuing infusion of top-notch technical graduates
who desire careers in the pulp, paper and allied