15-Year-Old Indian-American Wins Apple’s WWDC21 Swift Student Challenge

Abhinaya Dinesh, 15-year-old Indian American student, has been chosen as one of the winners of annual ‘WWDC21 Swift Student Challenge’ by Apple on June 1. She has developed an app called Gastro at Home which she plans to launch on the App Store this summer.

Having passion in the intersection of medicine and technology, the 15-year-old has helped other young women learn the basics of programming and machine learning (ML) in her city, North Brunswick, New Jersey.

Abinaya Dinesh, WWDC21 Swift Student Challenge winner
Image Credit: Apple.com

Abhinaya said, “I visited a gastroenterologist and he diagnosed me with a pelvic floor disorder, but then left me wondering how I was supposed to get better.”

The app, ‘Gastro at Home’ offers people with gastrointestinal disorders to access information and resources, especially when some cases are sensitive to discuss.

Apple has selected 350 students for the Swift Student Challenge from across 35 different countries as all-virtual ‘Worldwide Developers Conference 2021’ gets open between June 7 and June 11.

Gianna Yan, WWDC21 Swift Student Challenge winner
Image Credit: Apple.com

Apple’s vice president at Worldwide Developer Relations and Enterprise and Education Marketing, Susan Prescott said that this year they are incredibly proud that more young women applied, and they “are committed to doing everything” they can “to nurture this progress and reach true gender parity.”

“I think it’s important to keep pushing the boundaries of what’s possible as nobody is going to do it for us,” opined Abhinaya who is one of the three young women winners.

Over the past year, Abhinaya has started her own non-profit Impact AI to foster learning and ethical practices in artificial intelligence among youth.

Damilola Awofisayo, WWDC21 Swift Student Challenge winner
Image Credit: Apple.com

Therefore, she launched an eight-week long program for high school female students called Girls in AI to teach them the basics of programming and ML.

“I am trying to show the next generation that this technology exists and can add huge advancements in medicine and society,” Abhinaya said.

Abhinaya has been exploring new ways to use technology to advance the medical field after graduating from high school as her goals were always set to have a degree on either medical or Computer Science.

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