Students at Goshen High School recently found a way to help one of their classmates using some cutting-edge technology.
Their work is part of a curriculum teaching advanced engineering skills and some valuable life lessons.
“We've been able to do so much positive with 3D printing,” said J.J. Johnson, who teaches engineering and design.
A 3D printer is able to build pretty much anything out of plastic. Bit by bit it deposits plastic onto a tray and can manufacture items to precise standards.
Johnson recently acquired a 3D printer, designed and built by SeeMeCNC, a Goshen company.
“It’s a whole new outlet for creativity,” he said.
Johnson’s class has uses the printer to make iPhone holders, toys, and components for race cars they’ve been building.
“This is real-life application,” said Johnson, “there are businesses that design things and their prototypes are 3D printed.”
Recently, his students helped a classmate, Ivonne Lopez, a freshman who has cerebral palsy and walks with the assistance of a gate trainer, similar to a walker.
Her backpack kept hitting her from behind, making a trip down the hall difficult.
So Johnson’s students designed a fix – a piece of metal with two clips on it. The device attaches to the back of Lopez’s gate trainer and keeps her backpack from swinging into her legs.
“It's wonderful, it's a great thing that they did it for me,” said Lopez.
“You wouldn't think something so simple and so basic could do so much, but it actually really does so I’m extremely impressed,” said Cindy Gray, a paraprofessional who works with Lopez.