HS engineering students develop prosthetic arm for 9-year-old boy

Ollie Mancini and his mother, Nicole, watch a presentation from the engineering students at Scituate Academy on how they made Ollie's new prosthetic arm.


SCITUATE, RI (WPRI) – Christmas came early this year for a 9-year-old boy in Rhode Island.

Ollie Mancini was born without the lower part of his left arm. He always wanted a prosthetic, and a group of engineering students made that happen.

The group of students at the Scituate High School Academy of Engineering used a 3-D printer to create a prosthetic arm for Mancini, making his dream a reality.

“The fact that they wanted to help me and they wanted to help my son is the greatest gift that anyone could ever have,” Ollie’s mother, Nicole Mancini, said.

Nicole adopted Ollie from China when he was just 2 years old. Along with being Ollie’s mother, Nicole is an eighth-grade math teacher in Scituate. She actually taught many of the students who helped make her son’s new prosthetic arm.

“I was blown away. I was like, is this actually something we’re going to be working on because I’m so used to going to class and working on, you know, equations or just studying, and now I’m getting to go to class and we’re working on an arm for a child?” junior Christopher Olney said. “It’s a spectacular feeling.”

Working with the nonprofit E-Nable, the Scituate Academy of Engineering students researched, developed and created a custom-fit, 3-D prosthetic for Ollie.

“Now he won’t have to work as hard to do some of the things that most people take for granted,” Olney said.