SEATTLE - While many 16-year-olds spend their summer vacation at the mall or the beach, Ethiopia Mengesha spends hers at a place called The Imagination Lab.
Today, she's learning how to use a 3-D printer, as part of a high school internship program through Seattle Children's .
"I've always been really interested in STEM," said Ethiopia, “the idea of solving issues especially using science always appealed to me."
The time and frustration she spends printing 18 different models could help researchers, doctors and ultimately patients.
"That would have wasted time and that could have put a patient in jeopardy and that's how hopefully my work will help this lab,” said Ethiopia.
Tung Doan is another intern working in the lab.
He used a 3-D printer to make a device that measures the breathing of mice, which Seattle Children's could one day apply to premature babies.
"It feels awesome because I had this experience and also I get to save a lot of people's lives around the world," said Tung.
Imagination Lab manager Chris Howard mentors both students.
"They're both very enthusiastic and very interested in what they're trying to achieve,” said Chris.
When the lab opened in 2016, it was designed to inspire innovators, makers and creators.
"We are a group of problem solvers and my role here is to encourage that,” said Chris.
That includes future generations of innovators, too.
“So, this is a great opportunity for other people especially the kids to come in and learn how this technology is being applied now,” said Chris, “and then help them think about how they can apply that technology in the future."
Apply for a STEM internship with Seattle Children's here.
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