Hackathons in Silicon Valley are so commonplace that most aren’t worth notice, but this week Facebook hosted a unique event: the first-ever Women Vets in Tech competition. About thirty female military veterans took part in the day-long competition, which was judged by representatives from Facebook, Y Combinator, Next World Capital and GE Ventures Healthcare.
The winner was Kristi Erickson, a clinical psychologist who proposed “Bohdi therapies,” a virtual reality app that would offer anxiety treatment for veterans. “There’s just a great need right now for military service members to gain treatment,” she said. “We all know about the problems right now with the VA and access to care. If we can come up with these new ways to use technology we can reach more of the people who actually need the help.”