Success Stories from the HS/HSL Innovation Space


The HS/HSL Innovation Space, which opened in April 2015, is one of the first pioneering makerspaces created at an academic health sciences library to support health sciences education and research. The goal of the Innovation Space is to promote and facilitate innovative and collaborative hands-on learning, teaching, and research activities centered around new maker technologies such as 3D printing and 3D scanning.

Almost a year and a half later, we are happy to report that all of those activities are now taking place. We see UMB graduate students and researchers create custom lab equipment, such as 3D-printed scaffolds for bone tissue engineering and chronic restraint stress tubes and stoppers for mice. Teaching faculty 3D-printed anatomical models, including a pelvis, skull, dentures, and stackable models from CT scan data, to improve students’ learning process.

Students are often seen designing and 3D-printing custom medical devices ranging from a prosthetic hand to a finger splint. Prototyping activities, such as designing a custom well plate or a 3D model for the prosthetic nose, are happening at the HS/HSL Innovation Space. Clinicians created a model of a wound, which they used not only to guide the surgery process but also to cover and protect the wound until the surgery was performed. The HS/HSL Innovation Space also provides invaluable support and resources for coursework on campus. UMB students enrolled in the DPTE 528 course visited the Innovation Space and took a workshop about the application of 3D printing and 3D scanning to physical therapy. Additionally, Imaging Informatics Fellows of the UMMC Department of Diagnostic Radiology and Nuclear Medicine used the Innovation Space to complete an assignment.

Since its opening, more than 120 reservations have been made for the use of the HS/HSL Innovation Space. More than ninety 3D models were successfully printed, and over 200 faculty, students, and staff have taken the workshops on 3D printing and 3D modeling. Through the Innovation Space, the HS/HSL also provides educational outreach events for youth, as shown in visits by the UMB CURE Scholars Program and the BCCC Refugee Youth Project this summer. We are excited to see the interest and excitement around the HS/HSL Innovation Space as it grows. If you would like to stay informed of the activities at the HS/HSL Innovation Space, please subscribe to our Innovation Space newsletter.

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