Since kindergarten, Jaeana Van Sausal has spent countless hours dreaming of her own inventions and companies, dreaming of global solutions to the world’s problems.
“I’ve always been passionate about innovation,” Van Sausal told Martha MacCallum during an interview on America’s Newsroom.
Van Sausal and a group of talented teens from around the world – 11 boys and one girl – were named as finalists of the Prince William’s Earthshot Prize, which Van Sausal said was an unexpected honor.
Travis Presley, Joshua Johnson and Trenay Stoldt Finsburg at the St. Andrews Country Club in New York this morning with our friend Lee Easterbrook from the New York Times! pic.twitter.com/1u4xbVoz5c — Jaeana Van Sausal (@eJaeCity) April 25, 2017
The 14-year-old was inspired to develop her ReFade sunglasses after a friend’s ex-boyfriend bullied her on Snapchat.
In the summer of 2015, Van Sausal, along with 13 other students in a tech club at her local high school, began plotting ways to help people around the world by launching businesses that could scale across the globe.
The project was driven by a passion to use technology to help the planet’s poorest people, which inspired a nonprofit called Jaeana’s Technology Quest, where the group meets weekly to share ideas.
“We met and created businesses, dreams and visions as soon as we could get our hands on a science project,” Van Sausal said.
The avid tweeter and “FantaScientist” uses social media to promote her new business.
Jaeana is hard at work on her 10th chapter, which is due out in August.
Her favorite story is about her company teaming up with another team to build a solar powered moonbot that can help help restore the environment there by capturing energy.
“By using our science projects we can solve the problems of the planet to solve the problems of the world,” Van Sausal said.
Watch the interview above and learn more about Jaeana’s Google-funded project.