Today, the Congressional Internet Caucus and the Internet Education Foundation announced the new Congressional Co-Chairs for the 2016 Congressional App Challenge (CAC), U.S. Representatives Ed Royce (R-Calif.) and Seth Moulton (D-Mass.):
“As Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and a representative from the world’s innovation capital, I know how important a STEM proficient workforce is to the United States remaining an economic powerhouse. I encourage all of my colleagues to participate in the Congressional App Challenge, an excellent opportunity to recognize talented young people learning the skills being used to build the future,” said Rep. Royce.
"We are currently on track to reach a million unfilled programming jobs by 2020. These jobs and skills are crucial to the innovation economy," said Rep. Moulton. "I'm excited to serve as co-chair of the Congressional App Challenge with Rep. Ed Royce to encourage students across the country to learn how to code. This challenge is a nationwide effort to open up those opportunities to students in every community, and I look forward to seeing what they create."
The 2016 CAC will take place from July 18 - November 2, 2016. Officially in its second year, the Congressional App Challenge is a bipartisan congressional initiative to improve student engagement in coding and computer science. Particular efforts are made to engage those students from groups and regions that are underrepresented in the tech community. Students can create their apps on any platform, working alone or in teams of up to four. Winning apps are selected by local judges, and the student winners will be honored by their Congressional representatives and have their apps put on display in the Capitol Building.
In 2015, over 1700 high school students from 32 states signed up to compete. The students submitted nearly 500 original apps, with 116 Congressional districts hosting successful local challenges. CA-39's competition was won by Los Altos High School students that created Drop Saver, a mobile application created to help smartphone users manage their water usage.
Representative Royce serves California's 39th Congressional District, which encompasses parts of Los Angeles, Orange, and San Bernardino counties. He is Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and a senior member of the House Financial Services Committee.