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Calgary high school students build 3D printed prosthetic hands

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DH Calgary Staff Jan 08, 2016 11:09 am

When it comes to extra credit, Calgary high school students are going above and beyond the call of duty – and helping people in the process.

In partnership with Colin Pischke and his company Print Your Mind 3D, the students of educator Aaron Dublenko’s INNOVATE program will construct 3D printed prosthetic hands to be distributed by the e-NABLE Foundation to people in Calgary, and around the world.

“It’s something I really wish I had access to when I was a kid,” Pischke told Calgary Buzz. “Sitting in math class is all sorts of fun, but when you get to create 3D printed prosthetic limbs for somebody on the other side of the world it just adds something completely new to get kids engaged in actual education.”

INNOVATE allows students to create their own self-directed projects, receiving credits towards graduation by participating in innovative and humanitarian pursuits. Pishcke says getting the next generation interested in technology like 3D printing,especially for a cause like this, is vital to the future of the industry.

“The students and the kids are going to be coming up with the next generation of these e-NABLE hands,” he says. “3D printers are becoming such a common tool in education now that kids are growing up with this technology, and they’re going to be developing the next 3D printers that are pushing the industry.”

So far INNOVATE has plans to create five hands, which can be produced for around $100 each. Their GoFundMe campaign is looking for $3,500 dollars to create 30 more. Pischke says organizations like e-NABLE are showing the world 3D printing can – and should – be used for so much more than it is.

“All [a lot of people] want to do is make trinkets and toy. Things for their desk. What I wanted to do was find a way we could shed the light on real world applications that 3D printing is pushing the boundaries for. One of those is prosthetics,” he says.

More information on the INNOVATE program can be found on the Queen Elizabeth website, or donate to their GoFundMe campaign.


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DH Calgary Staff
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