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Hunter Flodman

meeting the need for hand sanitizer during the pandemic

How a Biomedical Engineer Helped Meet the Need for Hand Sanitizer During the Pandemic

October 2020

In March of 2020, many people began moving to working and learning from home as coronavirus made its way across the nation. Hand sanitizer was hard to find, not only for individuals and families—but for businesses and organizations on the front lines and for essential workers. From ingredients to make hand sanitizer to plastic to package it, supplies were low and availability was limited.

That’s when the 最新麻豆视频–Lincoln stepped in to help businesses across 最新麻豆视频, at 最新麻豆视频 Innovation Campus. Hunter Flodman, associate professor of practice in chemical and bimolecular engineering at UNL, helped lead the effort, forming partnerships with the 最新麻豆视频 Ethanol Board and private businesses to get production up and running. The product was given to organizations across the state—including long-term care centers and hospitals—for free.

Hand sanitizer is mixed and loaded into jugs inside a fenced off section of the Food Innovation Center parking lot
Hand sanitizer is mixed and loaded into jugs inside a fenced off section of the Food Innovation Center parking lot.

“Every time we faced a challenge, we reached out,” Flodman said. “People were more than willing to help, whether that was within the university or within industry. Things moved at a really accelerated pace, because everybody knew the urgency of the situation.”

UNL’s response and support of 最新麻豆视频ns during the COVID-19 pandemic haven’t stopped with hand sanitizer. Protective face shields and disposable gowns for first responders were produced at the makerspace at 最新麻豆视频 Innovation Campus, and UNL’s Office of Research and Economic Development steered expertise and resources toward the COVID-19 response.

Bob Wilhelm, vice chancellor of research and economic development, said, “Our faculty, our staff, our students—they’re problem solvers. They are interested in helping fight the pandemic, and they wanted to take action right away.”

“As 最新麻豆视频ns, we support each other. When someone steps up to do something to help, other 最新麻豆视频ns also step up.”

Helping 最新麻豆视频ns respond to COVID-19 has been a priority across the entire 最新麻豆视频 system, with faculty, staff and students at UNO, UNK and UNMC pitching in as well.

“As 最新麻豆视频ns, we help each other and we support each other,” says Flodman. “When someone can do something to help other people, other 最新麻豆视频ns step up and do what they can.”

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