Speaking Startup: Makers pitch in to produce PPE

As the coronavirus started to spread, Nick Ward-Bopp began to get requests to use the Kansas City-area makerspace where he works to produce personal protective equipment.

Ward-Bopp is makerspace facilitator for the Black & Veatch MakerSpace at the Johnson County Library and co-founder of Maker Village KC.

Lately, the makerspace has been producing face shields and protective masks to help meet demand for the personal protective equipment during the pandemic.

“From the maker side … this is what we do every day,” Ward-Bopp said. “People come in with a challenge, come in with an idea, come in with something that has been kind of an obstacle for them, and we kind of help troubleshoot and prototype and iterate on ideas to solve the problem.”

Ward-Bopp joined the latest episode of Speaking Startup to discuss how makers are working to help meet the need for PPE.

Plus, University of Missouri student entrepreneur Drew Patel won $25,000 in a student pitch contest that pitted Patel against top student entrepreneurs from across the state. We visited with Patel about what the funding will mean to Pollinate, his startup that’s building software for the ecommerce industry.


The Speaking Startup podcast explores news and issues important to Missouri entrepreneurs. Find more Speaking Startup on our website or wherever you get podcasts.


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