Karissa Mitchell is nine years old, and she LOVES Frozen. She was also born missing part of her right hand and wrist, and when a team called Enabling the Future that works on a volunteer basis to provide prosthetics to those who need them most paired up with the physics majors at Siena College, they met with her and decided that her new prosthetic had to have a fun Frozen theme to it.
The team used a 3D printer to create the prosthetic, which was printed in an icy blue color with snowflakes and a removable Olaf light (her favorite part!), and was made to fit Mitchell’s anatomy perfectly. In a video that Siena College released, Karissa’s mother said, “Karissa really identifies with Elsa because she knows what it’s like to be different from everyone else. She doesn’t want to be seen as different, which has made her extremely determined to do things as well, if not better, than others.”
The hand opens and closes simply by being bent at the elbow, and is life-changing for Karissa. She can now use both hands to pass items, pick up objects, and more. “Yes, we learn about 3D printing…but the best thing is today, seeing the look on her face,” said one of the students.
You can watch the video below, and hear more about what the students think: