In our Upper School Prosthetic Program students are using their knowledge to design and produce life-changing assistive devices that serve others in our community and across the world.
At All Saints Episcopal School, we set out to design our own solution to a problem. Our juniors and seniors teamed up with the Center for Affordable Prosthetics) to help a 22-year-old man in Honduras in need of a prosthetic arm. It was not a simple download-and-assemble project. Students had to go through the design thinking process to build an arm to the man's specifications, which involved iteration and problem solving. How do you print an arm that will form to the contour of a person's existing limb? The students tested different filaments until they discovered one they could heat and form into a shape that worked. Many challenges like this cropped up along the way, but the teens persevered.
"When we all found out who it was for, it gave a deeper meaning to the project and made us want to do it more," said one student. The class was excited to hear of the arm's arrival in Honduras but also open to feedback about necessary improvements.
Students are now partnering with the UT Tyler Occupational Therapy department to work on assistive technologies in addition to continuing their work in prosthetics.