Congressman Chris Smith, R-NJ 4 is encouraging Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) high school students from his district to apply for the Congressional App Challenge, a competition for U.S. high school students across the nation.
“The App Challenge encourages high school students to get involved in STEM fields, computer science and programming by creating and exhibiting their software applications,” said Smith. “This challenge is a modest but important step to inspire creativity in students, urge them to pursue coding skills and prepare for good-paying, high-tech jobs.”
Students from 169 congressional district in 38 states will compete to produce the best app. Individuals and teams of up to four can compete in the challenge. One winner will be chosen from each participating congressional district. The winning apps from across the country will be featured on a display in the Capitol building and the winners will share $50,000 in credits from Amazon Web Services that can be used for AWS cloud computing services.
“Computer science skills like coding will be critical as the future generations enter the workforce. It’s important that we encourage students to develop these skills early on, and we’re thrilled to support causes that do just that, like the Congressional App Challenge,” said Andrew Ko, Director of Education, Worldwide Public Sector, Amazon Web Services, Inc.
The CAC was created in part to highlight how Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) skills are essential for economic growth and innovation, and also because the U.S. has been falling behind on these fronts. STEM occupations are projected to grow by 17 percent by 2018, compared to 9.8 percent growth for non-STEM occupations. According to some estimates, the U.S. may be short as many as three million high-skilled tech workers by 2018.
“Urging young men and women to enter the STEM fields is critical to the future of our nation and necessary for the development of a 21st century, high-skilled workforce that can compete in today’s global economy,” Smith continued. “I encourage all students in our Congressional District who want to participate to sign up today.”
All high school students in New Jersey with the exception of residents of the 1st congressional district, the South Jersey district represented by Congressman Donald Norcross, are eligible to participate in the App Challenge.
The challenge was opened on July 18. Submission can be made up till November 2.
For more information or to submit an app for consideration, please visit: http://www.congressionalappchallenge.us/compete-2016/submission-process-and-rules/