LOVELAND, Ohio – Two Loveland High School seniors are turning video technology into treatment.
Radu Vasilescu and Emily Kiehl believe their innovative school project could help young kids who struggle with their eyesight.
Their work has already gained national recognition.
“Before this project happened, I thought innovation had to be something big,” Vasilescu said. “I thought innovation had to be Zuckerberg making Facebook from the ground up.”
But the two seniors found a way to make an impact on a smaller scale. They’re hoping to correct an eye disorder called amblyopia – also known as lazy eye. That’s when the brain favors one eye over a weaker eye.
As opposed to the traditional treatment of using an eye patch, kids can now enter into a virtual reality to help gamify the process of correcting their eye disorder. This way the weaker eye can be strengthened and work along with the stronger eye.
Without treatment, these young creators say there’s a chance the issue could impact adulthood.
“It could lead to monocular vision, which can affect things like depth perception, which adults especially need to do everyday tasks like reading books and driving cars,” Kiehl said.
Vasilescu said they’re “solving an existing problem with existing technology but in a new way.
“I feel like the feedback we’re getting is that we were very creative in coming up with the idea,” he said.
The world’s largest tech conference held in Las Vegas took notice.
“There were people everywhere and everybody had something to showcase and something that embodied what the future will be,” Kiehl said.
Vasilescu and Kiehl were each awarded a $1,000 scholarship by Lenovo for their innovative project.
“That’s when I realized just how many people we can touch,” Vasilescu said.
The next step is for the teens to begin running a case study with kids ages 5 to 12 years old, who can test out their vision-correcting gaming device over time and see just how effective it might be.