Ananya Cleetus

2015 National Award for AiC Honorable Mention
Champaign, Illinois
Software Engineering
University of Illinois - Urbana-Champaign

As a high school student, 2015 National Award for AiC Honorable Mention Ananya Cleetus participated avidly in robotics competitions, presenting her invention of a prosthetic hand for leprosy victims at the 2014 World Maker Faire. These days, though, she’s exploring ways to use technology to foster inner well-being. After experiencing firsthand how high-stress environments and other factors can contribute to mental health challenges, Ananya developed the Anemone app, which walks users through self-care practices that support mental and emotional health. During a summer internship at Microsoft, she connected with a mentor who offered space to talk about mental health in the workplace and what it’s like to be a woman in the tech field. Now, Ananya is passionate about promoting a positive work-life balance, and she has learned to always trust her gut.