The Congressional App Challenge

Bella Lochrane, Staff Writer

Mrs. Stanton’s mobile game design students had a chance to win big as they designed their own apps for the congressional app challenge. Little did this Spartan trio know that they would later be crowned as the three winners for the district.

The Congressional App Challenge challenges students to create their own original apps for a chance to win. Each challenge is district specific. The challenge is purposed to get students interested in the fields of S.T.E.M., coding, and computer science through hands on practice. Additionally, the CAC (Congressional App Challenge) strives to “include and engage students from communities that are traditionally underrepresented in the tech community.” Finally, the CAC aims to “innovate policy making by connecting Members of Congress to new and emerging technologies through personal interactions with their student constituents.” If the students happen to win, the U.S. representatives publicly recognize their winning teams and the winning app may be put on display in the U.S. Capitol Building for a year. 

The incredible Spartan trio that was the genius behind the app consisted of two juniors Emma Davis and Ranean Sulebi and lone senior Alara Erzurum. After brainstorming several ideas, the girls finally settled on “The Ohio Gun Obtaining Quiz.” Sulebi states, “Our goal was to basically create an app that explains to a regular person what the current gun laws are and hopefully we can all figure out a way to change those and make the system better to prevent mass shootings.” The app gives the user ten scenarios about someone trying to purchase a gun in Ohio. Regardless of whether a correct answer was given, an explanation to the reason is given, as some people tend to guess, said Sulebi. 

Together, the trio hopes to inspire other females to take more technology-based classes, and so does their teacher, Mrs. Stanton, who quotes “We try to get them in, but they traditionally shy away from computer programming because they think they can’t do it,” says Stanton. “Some of my best programmers are girls.” In the Spring, the girls will head to the nation’s capital to showcase their app with other students who have won the challenge.