During her internship with L.V. Prasad Eye Institute (LVPEI), which works to provide equitable, high-quality eye health care for all patients, regardless of socio-economic background, Serena Le worked specifically with the Srujana Innovation Center, a team dedicated to rapid prototyping of low-cost medical devices. There, she developed and prototyped a dry eye disease device the Dry Eye Syndrome Quantifier (DESQ). Le's aim with DESQ was to help doctors provide quick and accurate diagnoses by capturing and processing images of the lipid layer of the eye. Le designed and 3-D printed the device in two prototype iterations, worked on the LED electrical hardware, and developed image processing code in Python.
“I was glad that I was able to implement my skills and become more confident in SolidWorks and Python through designing and coding,” said Le of the experience, “but I also improved my skills in communicating with others, adapting to new required skillsets, such as image processing, and in adjusting to a new workplace and people. Academically, this experience has confirmed my interest in mechanical engineering, but it has also made me more aware of what new skills I’d like to acquire, especially in designing and building electromechanical systems.”
Designing Future Goals
Of her experience as a whole, Le believes it, “made me more confident in pursuing a career in mechanical engineering, with a focus on biomechanics and rehabilitation.” She enjoyed learning how to navigate a different work culture in India, and the opportunity to interact with people from many different backgrounds. She also felt inspired by her surroundings to give back, reflecting on resources available at MIT and the privilege to be able to participate in an experience such as MIT-India. “I am convinced that I do want to use engineering to impact and improve people’s lives in the future.”