RIT’s Studio 930 connects students with community partners to create life-changing assistive products

University News – Diversity

Hands-free navigation for the blind, assistive ski lift and glucose sensing patch among the ideas exhibited

Aug. 9, 2018 by Vienna McGrain Follow Vienna McGrain on TwitterFollow RITNEWS on TwitterA. Sue Weisler
Ana Sorensen, right, a fourth-year industrial design student from Davis, Calif., demonstrates LEV, an assistive lift, for Mary Dombovy, vice president of neurology and rehab medicine at Rochester Regional Health.

Rochester Institute of Technology student Kevin Farnand has been part of the Studio 930 Design Consultancy since its inception three years ago. But this summer is particularly special for Farnand, who proudly announced that a product he has been developing will soon be used by children with attention disorders at CP Rochester, a local organization serving individuals with and without disabilities.

On Aug. 7, Farnand joined 29 other students at the exhibition of the summer consultancy, a 10-week long multidisciplinary studio experience focused on the design and production of access and health technologies products. The program was created by Stan Rickel, associate professor of design at RIT and director of the industrial design graduate program. This summer’s products included an automated toilet paper dispenser, a hospital bedside table for optimal use by patients, and a secure and ergonomic sling for lifting individuals, to name a few.

“We are very proud of the achievements of our students over the last 10 weeks,” said Dan Harel, adjunct professor of industrial design and Studio 930 manager. “These achievements include the implementation of design thinking that we are promoting at RIT, which includes research, ideation and prototyping. They learned the value of continuing the process until they got it right, and that is critical for the success of the projects. They also learned to work in multidisciplinary teams, which is an industry requirement.”

The program is supported by RIT’s Simone Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, industrial design Master of Fine Arts program, College of Art and Design, …

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