Rep. Katie Porter has named Aryan Mittal from San Joaquin High School as the winner of the 2021 Congressional App Challenge in California’s 45th District.
When asked what inspired the creation of Voluntime, the student said, “I was inspired to create this app when the presidents of some school clubs reached out to me to ask how they should be tracking their volunteers. A detailed log of all volunteer hours is important because students can submit their logs to the school at the end of the year for recognition on their transcripts. I looked around and realized that most clubs and nonprofits were using a convoluted mess of forms, spreadsheets, and email chains to manage their volunteers. These complex logistics were a setback for overwhelmed students trying to start their own clubs, and I recognized that this problem could be solved through software. So, I got to work building Voluntime.”
The 2021 Congressional App Challenge yielded 2,101 fully functioning apps. After eighteen months of disruptions to educational cadences for students everywhere, the Congressional App Challenge came roaring back with 7,174 students registering for this year’s competition. All told, 340 Members of Congress hosted Congressional App Challenges in their districts across 50 states, Puerto Rico, Guam, the Mariana Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Washington, D.C.
The Congressional App Challenge is an official 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. Each participating Member of Congress selects a winning app from their district, and each winning team is invited to showcase their winning app to Congress during our annual #HouseOfCode festival. The program is a public-private partnership made possible through funding from Omidyar Network, AWS, theCoderSchool, Facebook, Replit, Accenture, and others.
The 2022 Congressional App Challenge will launch in June of 2022, and eligible students can pre-register for the competition now.