Above: Don Biery and the North Warren Regional High School’s robotics team, Children of the Corn, are utilizing 3D printers donated by Imperial Machine and Tool to create face shields.
BLAIRSTOWN, NJ – On April 28, 2020, U.S. Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5) launched #NJ5ThanksYou to regularly honor local heroes who are finding ways to support the North Jersey community throughout the coronavirus pandemic.
Today, Gottheimer is honoring North Warren Regional High School STEM teacher and robotics team coach Don Biery and his students who are using donated 3D printers to create hundreds of face shields for front-line health care workers.
Don Biery, who has been teaching at North Warren Regional High School for 11 years, and his students are utilizing 3D printers donated by Joe Sinclair from Warren County’s Imperial Machine and Tool in Columbia. Biery distributed the printers and necessary materials to students and has been regularly communicating with students via video conference calls to troubleshoot and solve any design or technology issues. Cardboard boxes to transport finished face shields have been donated by Warren County’s Brandt Box and Paper Co. Inc. in Columbia.
Due to complaints about face mask ear straps irritating workers, Biery and the students have created redesigned head straps to be used on masks as well. Nearly 360 ear straps have been delivered to front-line medical workers in the region.
“Our new #NJ5ThanksYou initiative is to honor members of our North Jersey who are going above and beyond the call of duty to help out during these challenging times. I want to thank North Warren Regional High School teacher Don Biery and their robotics team for helping get our front-line health care workers more equipment that they need to be able to protect themselves and do their job safely,” said Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5). “It’s great to see the innovation taking place by North Jersey students, and that their efforts are going to support our local hospitals, like Hackettstown Medical Center and Newton Medical Center. Don and his students’ initiative is truly inspirational and we thank them for their hard work.”
“I’ve always said that I hoped that my students would learn skills that could help them change the world and the future and now they are getting a chance to show that they can help society today,” said North Warren Regional High School STEM teacher and robotics team coach Don Biery. “It’s hard to put into words the amount of how proud I am of my robotics students because there was no hesitation in wanting to help in any way they could. We’re all a community out here in Warren County and it’s a wonderful place to be because everyone is willing to help each other.”
Biery has delivered the finished face shields and mask ear straps to the Blairstown Office of Emergency Management and local and regional hospitals and medical centers, including Hackettstown Medical Center and Newton Medical Center.
Biery and the team are also looking into delivering the mask ear straps to essential workers in the local community who wear masks all day, including grocery store workers, gas station attendants, restaurant workers, and delivery workers.
Below: North Warren Regional High School robotics student Richard Pilny stands with 3D-printed face shields.