VetConnect wins Rep. Julia Brownley’s 2022 Congressional App Challenge in California’s 26th District

Rep. Julia Brownley has named Rohan Philip, a Ninth Grader at Oak Park High School, as the winner of the 2022 Congressional App Challenge in California’s 26th District.

When asked what inspired the creation of VetConnect, the student said, ”It came to my attention that a veteran dies from suicide every 65 minutes in the US. I was blown away when I heard this statistic and knew I had to do something. After I researched this topic for weeks, I was surprised to find out that there were barely any apps available to help veterans. That’s when I started to identify the best resources for veterans (mental health, education,  employment, etc) and bring them all in one platform for veterans to view. After developing this app for months, I finally finished VetConnect and uploaded it to the App Store for all veterans to use! So far the feedback has been tremendous, and I can’t wait to make this app even better!”



The Congressional App Challenge smashed previous participation records in 2022. All told, 9,011 students registered for this year’s competition – creating 2,707 fully-functioning apps for 335 Members of Congress across 50 states, Puerto Rico, Guam, the Mariana Islands, American Samoa, and the District of Columbia. This year’s competition set the record for most student registrations, most apps submitted, most apps per district submitted, and most districts receiving over 20 apps. The wildly successful competition continues to impress upon House Members the importance of computer science education and the need to develop a pipeline of diverse, domestic STEM talent. 

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, Rise, theCoderSchool, Apple, and others.

The 2023 Congressional App Challenge will launch in June of 2023, and eligible students can pre-register for the competition now.