2018 Congressional App Challenge set for Oct. 27

Congressman Matt Gaetz this morning announced the 2018 Congressional App Challenge (CAC), a competition for students in middle and high school. The CAC accepts computer programs (or apps) written in any programming language, and for any platform, including desktop, web, mobile, Raspberry Pi, and others.

The Challenge is currently accepting submissions. Students are encouraged to register online by Sept. 10 before submitting their apps. Students can register at www.CongressionalAppChallenge.us. The submission deadline is Oct. 15.

The competition is open to all students, regardless of coding experience, who meet the eligibility requirements. Students are eligible to participate as individuals, or in teams of up to 4 members. At least one student on the team must be a resident of and attend school in the 1st Congressional District –counties of Escambia, Santa Rosa, Okaloosa, Walton, and a portion of Holmes.

The culminating event for the competition will take place at the 2018 Congressional App Challenge and STEM/Cybersecurity Expo on 1-4 p.m. 1-4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 27 at the University of West Florida, 11000 University Parkway. Students will present their app video demos to the panel of judges. Industry informational tables set up throughout the expo for attendees to visit. The awards program ceremony, where the winners will be announced, will take place later in the afternoon. The winning apps will be eligible to be featured in the U.S. Capitol, on House.gov, and on the Congressional App Challenge website.

The CAC was created because Congress recognized that STEM and computer-based skills are essential for economic growth and innovation. By some estimates, the U.S. may be short by as many as a million programmers by 2020.

“I am pleased to be hosting the App Challenge again,” Congressman Gaetz said. “STEM, computer, and coding skills are extremely valuable in today’s data-driven world, and students who develop these skills are preparing themselves well for the jobs of the future. It was inspiring last year to see so much talent from within the district, and I look forward to another successful App Challenge this year.”