NewsCoronavirusTeam Kentucky


BCTC professors making masks, school donating medical supplies amid outbreak

Posted at 2:51 PM, Mar 31, 2020

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Bluegrass Community Technical College in Lexington is donating medical supplies to healthcare workers battling COVID-19.

“We’re here to serve people and to make our communities better,” BCTC Director of Strategic Communications Michelle Sjogren said.

When the Coronavirus pandemic hit Kentucky, many at BCTC sprang into action. Professors Mike Hardin and Tim Birch decided to move the school’s 3D printing lab into their homes. They started making face shields for health care workers.

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BCTC professors Mike Hardin and Tim Birch make face shields using a 3D printer.

“It is not surprising, that is who our professors are," Sjogren said. "They are givers and any time we ask them to step up and serve, they’re there to do that."

The school is donating the face shields along with gloves, gowns, and other medical supplies to hospitals across five counties, including Baptist Health Lexington.

“I’ve been so proud of BCTC’s faculty, staff, students and all that they’re doing to give back. It’s really been heartwarming to see,” BCTC Academic Dean Melanie Williamson said.

While school buildings are closed, classes are still being taught online and through real-world experience.

“Being able to see their work in action, being able to see their professors giving back to the community, not only with the instruction, just to give back in a lot of other ways is a very important lesson for our students,” Sjogren said.

It is a life lesson students can carry with them for years to come.