Case Study: Empowering Young Women Entrepreneurs in STEM to Achieve their Dreams
| by MakerBot
From Idea to Marketable Product
Go to a doctor’s office and there’s bound to be a kid quietly petrified of getting a shot. Danielle Aylmer knows the feeling. As a kid, getting shots were bad enough but seeing the needle right before it went in was just too much. As a student later at Tottenville High School in Staten Island, that experience fueled her to create Syngies. The “Syngies” is a toy car that sits on top of the syringe and conceals the needle so young kids are more relaxed getting a shot.
After joining a local chapter of a Young Entrepreneur Academy, she spent months refining her idea into a marketable product. Then in April 2014, she submitted it to a competition hosted by the Staten Island Chamber of Commerce and won the top prize of $1,125. With this money, Aylmer could take the next steps to get her product off the ground.
Affordable Product Development
Once she considered her options, injection molding proved too expensive and a MakerBot 3D printer didn’t come with product design expertise. There was only one option that could provide her with both the hardware and design feedback at the lowest cost: the MakerBot Innovation Center inside of the Hudson Valley Advanced Manufacturing Center at SUNY New Paltz. There, Aylmer could utilize the MakerBot Innovation Center, with its thirty MakerBot 3D printers, along with a student intern, majoring in Mechanical Engineering and minoring in Art Studio at SUNY.
By collaborating with the intern, Aylmers iterated on the design for Syngies four times. Through these iterations, Syngies became smaller overall and the toy more animated, personified, and kid- friendly. The design was also streamlined so the toy wouldn’t impede doctors.
With MakerBot Innovation Center, Aylmers went on to print her first production line of 500 Syngies. If she had originally purchased one 3D printer, producing this many Syngies would have been slower and extremely time consuming.
Scaling up for a Product Release and a Future Business
With a MakerBot Innovation Center at SUNY New Paltz, Aylmer could devise an affordable strategy for developing her product and the intern received real world experience. Aylmer is now looking for venture capital to fund her new business and plans to expand her line of Syngies. As her business grows, she will continue to collaborate with the MakerBot Innovation Center for added expertise and scalability.