Foresight wins Rep. Ken Calvert’s 2022 Congressional App Challenge in California’s 42nd District

Rep. Ken Calvert has named Chloe Wu, an 11th Grader at Eleanor Roosevelt High School, as the winner of the 2022 Congressional App Challenge in California’s 42nd District.

When asked what inspired the creation of Foresight, the student said, ”Take a look around and visualize the colors, faces, and objects that surround you. Now, imagine if that was taken away from you in an instant. While many of us may not be able to imagine what it would feel like to live in a world consumed by darkness, many people do. In fact, “approximately 12 million people 40 years and over in the United States have vision impairment, including 1 million who are blind…” (CDC, 2020). Our eyesight is so crucial to our everyday lives and without it, we struggle to fit into society because we can’t do anything. Knowing that there are people out there who struggle with simple daily tasks such as walking around the house, reading during their free time, or even grabbing a cup of water made me want to create this app. As well as that, as times have progressed, technology has become more prevalent and we see tools that are used to help those who are visually impaired such as braille, dwindle. I want to provide a resource to those who do not have the funds to get a caretaker or an extremely expensive piece of tech to still be able to assimilate into society and be independent. Our sense of freedom stems from the ability to do what we want and if there is something hindering us, we may feel trapped. Research has proved that those who can’t see typically suffer from more mental health problems because they are stuck at home all day and can not do much. I had witnessed this firsthand, as one of my dad’s friends who suffers from glaucoma was laid off from their job and stayed home all day. It takes such a toll on the visually impaired and I am here to make an impact in this community by offering an app that can increase their productivity and independence.”

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.