A group of Camas students is helping in the fight against the novel coronavirus by 3D printing and laser cutting much needed personal protective equipment for health care workers.
Team Mean Machine, the robotics team, and the Camas High School Science Olympiad team have produced and delivered 1,219 eye shields and 215 face shields to local hospitals and medical offices.
Health care workers across the country are in desperate need of masks and other personal protective equipment to do their jobs. Gov. Jay Inslee in recent press conferences has implored manufacturers to help produce the equipment.
Camas students are using their skills picked up in clubs to answer the call, designing and printing frames and faceplates that can be snapped together into protective gear. Students are using 3D printers in their own homes to print out the frames, while the team’s mentors are using the laser cutter at Camas High School to cut out face shields. The pieces are delivered separately and can be snapped together by health care providers.
“It feels good that we can take these skills that we learned and use it to make a difference,” said Gabriel Guo, a 17-year-old junior at Camas High School and president of the robotics team.
This would normally be the peak season for the clubs, but contest season was cut short by the spread of COVID-19.
“It was brutal,” said Scott Herber, president of the Camas Robotics Team Booster Club. “They were on their way to qualify for worlds when everything stopped.”
Still, the project has given students a chance to keep their skills sharp in a real-world application, Herber said.
“This is going to be one of those history book lessons,” Herber said.
The team has raised more than $14,000 through GoFundMe and is also asking for donations of material. For more information, visit the team’s website at team2471.org.