Flourish wins Rep. Daniel Webster’s 2022 Congressional App Challenge in Florida’s 11th District

Rep. Daniel Webster has named Esly Villeda, Jacob Sumner, and Andrea Fitzgerlad, a team of 11th Graders at Wildwood Middle High School, as the winners of the 2022 Congressional App Challenge in Florida’s 11th District.

When asked what inspired the creation of Flourish, the student said, ”Many teens, including us, aren’t actively being taught the skills that we featured on this app, so we feel like we are entering adulthood unprepared. We know that these skills are necessary for life and we wanted to make it easier for young adults to learn in an easier way. Without being taught, we often find the need to self-teach, rely on parents or guardians, or simply learn about these things “the hard way” which could impact our level of success in life. There is a multitude of resources online, but this can often be overwhelming for one person to handle. Sometimes, it is also hard to distinguish between reliable and non-reliable resources. ”

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.