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Jostens Helps 2018 Graduates Celebrate with Customized and Sustainable Regalia

Company servicing increased interest in customized and sustainable graduation ceremonies from high schools and colleges across the U.S.

Minneapolis, MN - June 19, 2018

Jostens, the leading provider of publications, jewelry and graduation products serving the K-12 and college market, is completing a season of high school and college graduation ceremonies with higher levels of school customization and sustainability, according to company officials.

“Customization and environmentally-conscious products have been two trends that have influenced consumer brands for several years,” said Ann Carr, Jostens Chief Marketing Officer. “But we’ve seen increased momentum in the high school and college graduation markets lately, and it’s really exciting.”

Customized Commencements

While colleges have historically branded their commencement ceremonies with regalia incorporating a school’s colors, mascot, and marks, high schools are now also becoming savvier to the student and school benefits of a customized graduation ceremony.

“Over the last two graduation seasons, the number of schools choosing to incorporate a school mark on their cap, gown, or stole has more than doubled, and a lot of it is being driven by student interest” said Carr.

One of the schools choosing to customize their graduation ceremony this year was Pittsburg High School in Pittsburg, Kansas. The 2018 senior class from this rural community near the Kansas/Oklahoma border wanted to make their graduation event more memorable than those of years past, choosing to do it by redesigning their school’s traditional graduation stole with an “extreme” design incorporating the school’s mascot, a purple dragon.

“There were some special things about this graduating class that made them want to make more of a mark on their high school experience,” said Chris Curtis, Jostens sales representative who has worked with the school for over 20 years. “So we designed a stole that they could hang onto after high school and always remember their time at Pittsburg and what it meant to be a Purple Dragon.”

Curtis said schools in his region take varying approaches to designing their custom regalia, with some playing an active role in the design process, and others choosing to leave it to the professional design team at Jostens to develop designs at their request.

Sustainable Ceremonies

While high school graduation ceremonies are becoming more customized, Carr stated the trend among college graduations is becoming more earth-friendly.

“The number of colleges requesting our sustainable line of graduation regalia is approaching almost half of all colleges we work with, and even higher among new schools” said Carr. “Since launching our line of ElementsTM bio-degradable gowns in 2009, our sustainable regalia business has experienced double-digit growth based on the interest college students have in creating a graduation ceremony that’s better for them and the planet.

One college that chose Jostens based on their sustainable regalia options was University of California San Diego, which recently celebrated its class of 2018 graduation. “They were looking for a graduation partner that could deliver the most earth-friendly graduation experience possible,” said Sandra Ochoa, the Jostens sales representative who now supports UCSD in her territory. “Between our ElementsTM gowns and the other things Jostens does to re-use and recycle college regalia, we can bring a lot to the table for schools interested in sustainable graduation solutions.

An example Ochoa cited is the company’s new “Responsible Regalia” initiative, which provides partnering colleges and its graduates multiple ways to create an eco-friendly graduation experience, including an expanded rental regalia program featuring Revive gowns made from recycled materials, and new ways for students to keep and display their gowns after graduation. The effort also features an innovative gown-return program in which the company will redirect returned gowns to schools or other non-profit organizations in need.

More information about Jostens Responsible Regalia program can be found at

About Jostens

Jostens is a trusted partner in the academic and achievement channel, providing products, programs and services that help its customers celebrate moments that matter. The company's products include yearbooks, publications, jewelry and consumer goods that serve the K-12 educational, college and professional sports segments. Founded in 1897 and based in Minneapolis, Minn., Jostens is a subsidiary of Newell Brands (NYSE: NWL) and can be found online at

About Newell Brands

Newell Brands (NYSE: NWL) is a leading global consumer goods company with a strong portfolio of well-known brands, including Paper Mate®, Sharpie®, Dymo®, EXPO®, Parker®, Elmer’s®, Coleman®, Jostens®, Marmot®, Oster®, Sunbeam®, FoodSaver®, Mr. Coffee®, Rubbermaid Commercial Products®, Graco®, Baby Jogger®, NUK®, Calphalon®, Rubbermaid®, Contigo®, First Alert®, and Yankee Candle®. For hundreds of millions of consumers, Newell Brands makes life better every day, where they live, learn, work and play.


Jeff Peterson