3D Printing

“How Do I Reach These Kids?” Build a 3D Bioprinter

After nine months of perseverance, high school seniors at Loveland High School in Ohio successfully created a 3D bioprinter. The payoff came as part of the capstone project for three students: Nathan Bryant, Cameron Spicer and Thomas Worsham. Their biotechnology teacher, Jamie Allison had a warranted emotional reaction when the project finally came to fruition. Even the superintendent commented on the revelation. The ability to print bacteria is now accomplished at the high school level.

As we continue to move into a realm only previously seen in science fiction, 3D printing continues to play a major role in scientific progress. The school has a biotechnology field, something new to universities not that long ago. Jamie Allison accurately said, “You don’t see this every day. I’ve seen something like this happen now once in my career.”

When news of the feat reached higher levels in the school system, the Loveland Superintendent Chad Hilliker  commented: “This is a proud moment for all of us in education. This was a lesson in passion and perseverance, and I believe it proves when given the tools and the freedom to flex their creative muscle what our students can accomplish. It is phenomenal, and I salute these students and their teachers – all of them – on achieving this amazing feat.”

Others in the school, especially from the science faculty, had emotions on their sleeves as they realized what they witnessed. Painstakingly, the students had converted a 3D router originally intended to cut wood and came away with a bioprinter. The process prints scaffolds containing bacteria thereby effectively printing bacteria and nurturing its growth. Educators often hear the mantra that students will rise the expectations you set, yet in Loveland’s case, the students rose and soared above it.

One of the students on the project perfectly expresses the real lesson from this story. “You get to learn things you never knew possible,” said Spicer. “You get to test the boundaries and push the boundaries of what high school students can do.”

Source: Loveland Schools