You know Arin as the CEO and Founder of WebRTC.ventures, but in 2018, Arin and the team created UniWellness, a telemental health platform that expands and enhances the reach of university counseling centers. Arin’s alma mater, the University of Virginia McIntire School of Commerce, recently featured an interview they did with him in the article, Putting Tech to Good Use with Arin Sime (Engineering ’97, M.S. in MIT ’10). The interview explores a little about each company and the positive impact each are making.
Here are a few of the Q&As taken right from the article:
What led you to create UniWellness Care? How did you come to discover that there was a critical need among young adults for easily accessible mental health care?
One of our colleagues lost her son to suicide in college two years ago, and all of us on the team have family members who have been affected by mental health concerns. I began to study the issue more and learned that nearly half of young adults face depression and anxiety during their college careers. As a parent of teenagers, myself, I was alarmed to see how widespread the mental health crisis is. We realized that we could apply our years of experience building live video solutions to create a telehealth platform that would help college counseling centers to better connect with their students and expand their reach. Our software allows the therapist to meet with students remotely over a secure video connection, and we provide functionality around the video call to help students manage their appointments and follow up on action items given to them by their therapist.
With WebRTC.ventures, you’re integrating live video with web and mobile apps that UniWellness is using for doctors who provide telehealth services, right? How much crossover has there been between the two initiatives you’ve founded, and how do they inform each other?
There is a lot of crossover at this point. The technical expertise we’ve developed over the years at WebRTC.ventures means that UniWellness has very little technical risk—we know how to build secure video solutions for healthcare and already have experience doing that for a variety of use cases. That allows us to focus on the business challenges of UniWellness without worrying as much if the technology will work.
What are some other successes you’ve had with WebRTC.ventures?
One of our clients just launched TrainWith, which is an iOS application that allows personal trainers to livestream their classes to students around the world. You can sign up for prerecorded fitness classes or join a live class where the camera and microphone on your iPhone are turned on and your video is shared with the personal trainer. This allows students to join fitness classes from home but still have the personal interaction and motivation that come from working with a personal trainer. Our team has provided all the design and development of this application.
We’ve also built interactive broadcasting solutions that have been used by Major League Baseball and Fox Sports to host online sports shows where fans can ask questions of their sports idols live and join the show remotely.
You have many responsibilities, but what part of your career excites you most?
Earlier in my career, my favorite thing was always working with a new client, hearing their product idea, and being the technical person who could bring their dream to reality. That was very rewarding to me and the reason I got into engineering to start with. Now as my responsibilities have grown, I don’t do the technical side anymore, but I do take tremendous pride in seeing how our team has grown into that same role of bringing someone’s vision to reality. Learning how to grow and lead technical organizations that can accomplish so much more than I could individually has been very exciting for me.
What are you most looking forward to accomplishing in 2019 with the businesses you’ve founded?
I’m looking forward to seeing UniWellness be adopted by multiple universities and to become a part of helping young adults get the mental health care they need before they reach a crisis point. Building great technology is satisfying by itself, but I’m looking forward to this opportunity with my latest business to directly impact people’s lives.
Read the full UVA article.