@Habit Wins Rep. Lipinski’s (IL-03) 2019 Congressional App Challenge

Rep. Daniel Lipinski has named four Palos Heights students as the winner of the Congressional App Challenge in Illinois 3rd district. Amos Alonzo Stagg High School’s Samantha Fitzpatrick, Yamilett Estrada-Reyes, Salma Kamni and Justina Chua submitted @Habit, an app that helps with addressing climate change.

When asked why they were passionate about creating an app that informs people of climate change the students replied,“Despite knowing that dozens of people are trying to create an environmental impact, many organizations and other apps neglect something very important–the difficulty for people to change their habits. Yes, people may watch an inspirational video about climate change and decide to never use plastic again. However, actually maintaining the momentum of that habit is difficult.” They hope to encourage other students to better their communities by using their computer science skills.  

Over 10,000 students registered for the 2019 Congressional App Challenge. These students created and submitted 2,177 functioning apps, marking the end of the most successful Congressional App Challenge to date. All told, 304 Members of Congress hosted Congressional App Challenges in their districts across 48 states, Puerto Rico, the Mariana Islands, and Washington, D.C.

The CAC is an initiative of the U.S. House of Representatives, where Members of Congress host contests in their districts for middle school and high school students, encouraging them to learn to code and inspiring them to pursue careers in computer science. The non-profit Internet Education Foundation provides the CAC with supplemental staffing and support. In the five years of the Congressional App Challenge, the program has yielded 1134 App Challenges across 48 states. Thousands of functional apps have been created by over 25,000 students, and participant demographics surpass all industry diversity metrics.