Engineering Students, Faculty Design Prosthetic Hand for Schenectady Fire Victim Safyre Terry
Safyre Terry Gets a New Hand Courtesy of UAlbany!
Watch Safyre Terry as she learns to use a prosthetic hand for the first time! Safyre, a little girl who was badly burned and lost her family in a deadly arson, had her right hand amputated. Students and professors from UAlbany's College of Engineering and Applied Sciences fashioned a 3D printed prosthetic hand designed specifically for her. Visit Safyre Schenectady's Super Survivor to learn how you can help.Posted by University at Albany, SUNY on Wednesday, December 23, 2015
ALBANY, N.Y. (January 5, 2016) -- A little girl with a simple holiday wish who is now an international symbol for courage in the face of adversity recently received a special present from the University at Albany. A team of faculty and students from the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences have spent months constructing a working hand for Safyre Terry and she had her first fitting right before Christmas.
From left, UAlbany's Caroline Buinicky, Jonathan Muckell and Kimberly Stevens help fire victim Safyre Terry try on her new prosthetic hand. (Photo Michael Parker)
Safyre was badly burned in an arson that took the life of her father and three siblings. She lost both a foot and hand in the blaze, but thanks to a project spearheaded by UAlbany's Department of Informatics, students were able to use 3D printing technology to design a prosthetic device to which Safyre is quickly adapting.
Months ago, Safyre's family saw a news story about a UAlbany team that, working with Google and the e-NABLE community, had printed and fitted hands for children across the country who were in need. After the story, her family contacted the team, and they have been working together ever since on Safyre's hand.
Safyre became known internationally after her Christmas wish to decorate her tree with cards from around the world was shared far and wide. The cards have poured in by the millions, from as far away as Taiwan, and includes one from President Barack Obama and family. But the new hand created at UAlbany almost immediately became one of Safyre's favorite gifts.
Because she is local, the team behind Safyre's new 3D hand will be able to check in and make more precise adjustments. "We want to hear what's working well for Safyre and what's not, and that will help us share back with the e-NABLE community -- the community of volunteers behind this project -- to learn how to improve the design for future children as well as Safyre," said Jonathan Muckell, a lecturer in the Department of Computer Engineering.
The next step will be to adjust the hand to Safyre's specifications, while planning future improvements -- such as an attachment that would allow Safyre to write or color, two of her favorite activities.
For more news, subscribe to UAlbany's RSS headline feeds
About the University at Albany
A comprehensive public research university, the University at Albany-SUNY offers more than 120 undergraduate majors and minors and 125 master's, doctoral, and graduate certificate programs. UAlbany is a leader among all New York State colleges and universities in such diverse fields as atmospheric and environmental sciences, business, public health, health sciences, criminal justice, emergency preparedness, engineering and applied sciences, informatics, public administration, social welfare, and sociology taught by an extensive roster of faculty experts. It also offers expanded academic and research opportunities for students through an affiliation with Albany Law School. With a curriculum enhanced by 600 study-abroad opportunities, UAlbany launches great careers.