Principia Wins Rep. Houlahan’s (PA-06) 2019 Congressional App Challenge

Rep. Chrissy Houlahan has named two Exton students as the winner of the Congressional App Challenge in Pennsylvania’s 6th district. Great Valley High School’s Lucas Armand and Shrey Panda submitted Principia, an app that provides an educational video game experience for students learning about Isaac Newton’s laws of gravity.

When asked why they were passionate about creating an app that promoted gravity awareness the students replied, “We were inspired to make this app through our experience in AP Physics and through outside research into the theories behind orbital mechanics. We wanted to provide an interactive environment to explore and learn about the fundamental concepts that guide the universe.” 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.