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Mizzou BMES helps local students with prosthetics project

The Mizzou chapter of the Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES) recently partnered with elementary students from Columbia Public Schools’ Extended Educational Experiences gifted students program to help them learn about and create their own prosthetic limbs.

A makeshift prosthetic leg using a plunger and foam.

Mizzou BMES members helped local elementary school students build makeshift prosthetic legs.

EEE students were in the midst of learning about bones and prosthetics, and the program reached out to BMES President Muhammad Salim to inquire about receiving guidance from Mizzou Engineering students studying that very subject.

“They came up with the ideas (for the prosthetics), and we helped them improve their designs and make them more comfortable for the user,” Salim said.

Students designed their own prosthetics and made makeshift models using objects such as sponges, plungers, bungee cords and more. Over the course of a week, BMES members worked with the elementary school students to perfect their inventions.

“They went out and created their own, wrote out a design plan, wrote out what made their prosthetic leg better than others, and we talked them through the process,” Salim said.

The event was a success, and Salim said there is interest on both sides in continuing the partnership.

“Our members wanted to go back and do it again in the future. They built a relationship with the students and really got to know them,” he said.

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