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BWL Senior Donates 3-D Printing Expertise to Health Care Crisis

Jessica Lichtenstein

Since the early weeks of the Covid-19 emergency in New York City, Sam O’Hara ’20, a captain of BWL’s Robotics Team, has been working steadily to create face shields for health care workers in need of personal protective equipment. Using several 3-D printers at his home in coordination with Columbia University Engineering, Sam initially printed and delivered 115 face shields in three days as part of a larger project, donating his finished work for distribution through Weill Cornell. The face shields are an important component of the protective regime of front-line health care workers across the city, and Sam has continued with the project during the ongoing health care crisis, with over 500 masks completed and donated to various institutions citywide.

Sam O'Hara, second from left, with several members of the Robotics team: Bennet Roberts '20, Philip Feffer '23, Sophie Feffer '20. 

Through his experiences using 3-D printing technology to create custom-designed parts for BWL’s robots, Sam has become proficient in 3-D printing technology and has been able to effectively communicate these skills to other students. He has reached out to coordinate similar donations from robotics teams in our region, helping to ensure that face shield donations follow safety, quality, and labeling guidelines prior to delivery. We believe that Sam’s accomplishments reflect not only the importance of STEM learning, but also the impact of shared experiences, such as being a leader in the School’s Robotics team, that foster collaboration and creative problem solving.