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Apr 15, 2020

WTC Instructors Make Masks During Crisis

WTC instructors come together to make masks for the community during the pandemic.

In the Fall of 2016, Dana Fahntrapp and Patrick Schneider were awarded the WTC Foundation Inspire Award and used the funds to purchase a 3D printer to benefit the Petroleum Technology and Art Departments at WTC. Faculty, staff, and students from many departments over the years have enjoyed using the printer for various projects. However, over the past few weeks it has been used for a different purpose.

The national shortage of medical protective equipment can be seen even in a small town like Snyder. Fahntrapp, a Volunteer Firefighter, began hearing EMS calls with concern over patients showing COVID-19 symptoms, and EMTs wearing full protective gear on each call. After hearing this, she was inspired and compelled to help. 

“As a volunteer firefighter, I know several of the members of our local EMS team,” said Fahntrapp, who is also actively involved in other organizations within the Snyder community. “I just wanted to be sure they were safe as they were likely to be one of the first exposed. 

When Schneider heard of Fahntrapp’s plan to help equip Scurry County’s first responders, he knew he wanted to help.

“It became clear that several of us in Snyder could collectively come together with 3D printing face shields, among a couple of other needed supplies,” said Schneider.

Fahntrapp and Schneider quickly began testing various designs for protective face shields using the 3D printer. With the help of Facebook and other community members and organizations, they were also able to locate plastic sheets to complete the face shield.

“Through the Snyder Sharing and Caring Facebook page, I was able to reach out to people that had access to clear transparent sheets, as well as get others on board like DNA Custom Engraving here in Snyder,” said Fahntrapp.

Over the past few weeks, over 80 face shields have been printed and distributed to Scurry County EMS and Cogdell Memorial Hospital. Fahntrapp and Schneider will continue to produce face shields for as long as they can.

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