Students use 3D printer to create prosthetic hand for little girl

Friday, April 17, 2015

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- High school students taking an engineering class have literally found a way to lend a helping hand to a little girl thousands of miles away. Eight seniors at Duchesne Academy have created a prosthetic hand using a 3D printer. It was part of their curriculum after the school purchased the latest technology.

"We felt that this was a great way to motivate the girls," said Dr. Donald Crump, head of upper level school at Duchesne. "To see that it's a lot of fun, to see that it's an incredible experience."

With the help of "E-nable", an online organization that connects volunteers with kids in need of prosthetic hands, the girls were matched with a nine-year-old girl in California. For several months, the students exchanged emails with the little girl's mother to get pictures and dimensions of her hand. They also did hours of long research and compared their notes with students at Johns Hopkins Medical Center.

"We researched a lot," said Carla Martinez. "We looked up to see how other people were doing it."

Four months later the hard work paid off. The students shipped off the prosthetic hand in time for Christmas.