Habit Cash wins Rep. Patrick McHenry’s 2022 Congressional App Challenge in North Carolina’s 10th District

Rep. Patrick McHenry has named Yunjia Quan, an 11th Grader at Charlotte Country Day School, as the winner of the 2022 Congressional App Challenge in North Carolina’s 10th District.

When asked what inspired the creation of Habit Cash, the student said, ”Upon my entrance into high school, I noticed that a lot of students around me struggle with productivity issues. After more research, I realized that this is a trend among every age group: roughly 80% of students and employees in the United States face a lack of productivity, and burnouts and depression can easily result from this lack of motivation. I also serve on the leadership team of several educational nonprofits with a total of 4000+ high school members, so I took a survey and discovered that an overwhelming majority of the students struggle with motivation and self-discipline. Since I saw a need for a motivational productivity-oriented software, I developed Habit Cash to combat the phenomenon

Since users can directly earn money by doing the study sessions in Habit Cash, this is a huge incentive for them to study and work. Habit Cash makes studying less painful, and users will also be rewarded with achievements and a community to study with. It can increase anyone’s productivity and facilitate their work and studies!

My work in developing Habit Cash is supported by Microsoft for Startups Founders Hub and the Apple Developer Program, and I also found a welcoming community of high school software developers, and we would get together and work on our own softwares / projects. Having a supportive community behind me inspired me to keep going and make my dream come true.

Another part of Habit Cash that excites me is writing the Whitepaper for Habitcoins. Prior to Habit Cash, I had completed two cryptography research projects with professors from Stanford University and Kenyon College. I became fascinated with cryptography and blockchain technology, and thus I wanted to formulate my own digital currency. Using my cryptography and mathematical knowledge, I created a decentralized and secure system for Habitcoins so that users of Habit Cash can make Habitcoins from studying and trade it for real money, and every transaction of Habitcoins is on a blockchain. I researched other blockchain platforms and the Whitepapers of digital currencies to write my own rules for Habitcoins. It was so rewarding seeing how Habitcoin run efficiently with my paper, and I loved the process of coming up with this idea and seeing it take shape with time and effort.”

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.