Computer-science students at Whetstone High School have spent the last 10 weeks building something that can build things.

Computer-science students at Whetstone High School have spent the last 10 weeks building something that can build things.

The second-year computer science students in Lisa Bycynski's Credits Count program have put together a 3-D printer from a kit, using a grant from theAEP Credits Count Program. They built the printer from scratch and will maintain it while using the device to create things -- all kinds of things -- for the school.

While the students last week struggled to come up with concrete suggestions of what the printer -- once some bugs are worked out and some adjustments are made so it's in perfect working order -- could be used to make for the school, the possibilities, they agreed, are pretty much endless.

Quinn Blosser, a junior, suggested that if an aging piece of equipment at the school breaks and the parts it needs are no longer available, the 3-D printer could come to the rescue.

Bycynski said the seed was planted last year when she took a group of students to COSI for a 3-D printing workshop and learned about a grant arrangement that had been made with another school.

"3-D printing is becoming such a big thing in our society," she said. "That's just a future skill that will be important.

"There's a lot of capability or possibilities with this."

Bycynski, now in her third year at Whetstone but her 18th with Columbus City Schools, said the art department could make use of the device, and it also could turn out replicas of human organs for those studying biology.

Blosser said putting the printer together and considering what it's capable of actually took him back to a childhood pastime.

"It's almost like an advanced Lego kit," he said.

"Just putting it together was pretty cool, and seeing the finished product," said Diego Castro Shell, another junior.

He wants to be a computer engineer one day.

"It gave me kind of an idea what it's going to be like when I graduate," Castro Shell added.

"When we first got it, it was all in little pieces," said senior Sarah Al-Saidi. "For the school, there are a lot of things we can make. It's endless possibilities of what can be made with that."

"It was cool for me because I've never done anything hands-on," said junior Sofia McLemore.

Senior Trey Parker said everyone in the class has seen or at least heard of a 3-D printer, but until they worked together to build one, they didn't understand how much goes into the device.

"I don't think any of us knew how all the parts came together," he said. "By putting it all together, it made it more real."

kparks@thisweeknews.com

@KevinParksTW1