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ASU Library Makerspace Provides Crucial Protective Gear

BY TETTLEMA – APRIL 17, 2020

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As ASU continues to monitor COVID-19, the university has transitioned from in-person teaching and learning to remote options. In this challenging time, however, the collective innovation of ASU faculty and staff has demonstrated remarkable adaptability. As a method of celebrating the good during uncertain developments, the University Technology Office is gathering success stories of “remote resilience” from the ASU community. The situation globally and across the country is changing daily, but we also plan to share these stories to keep pace.

By Sophie Jones, Experience Center Customer Service Specialist

Between a national shortage of protective equipment and a recent directive from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to don face masks when leaving home, the need for essential items is more crucial than ever. No one is more aware of this issue than Victor Surovec, the Program Coordinator for the ASU Library Makerspace. He has been running the library's 3D printers for over a week now, producing face masks and shields to provide to those among us in need of it the most - such as healthcare workers whose risk has been even more heightened into a daily occupational hazard.

The face masks and shields Surovec is producing are crucial to slowing the spread of COVID-19, and are in short supply elsewhere. The results of his work are going to those on the front lines, such as first responders and healthcare workers. However, the Makerspace itself is not suited for mass-production, meaning the seven 3D printers are "going constantly," Surovec said. Nonetheless, the Makerspace team continues their efforts to provide solutions to the real-life vulnerabilities faced by the community at large. 

“The strength of the Makerspace is collaboration, where you tackle a problem together, and doing this in a space where you have access to all the needed stuff, the tools, the resources," Surovec said. "It enables us to do things in a cleaner, more creative and efficient way.” However, he still works as the only person in that physical space. “Right now, we just have to get these supplies out to the medical field.”

Read more about the Makerspace team’s efforts at The Library Channel.

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