Tiresias wins Rep. Donald McEachin’s 2022 Congressional App Challenge in Virginia’s Fourth District

Rep. Donald McEachin has named William Vo of CodeRVA Regional High School, Owen Sheffield of CodeRVA Regional High School, William Pielmeier of CodeRVA Regional HS, and Xavier Santos of CodeRVA Regional HS as the winners of the 2022 Congressional App Challenge in Virginia’s Fourth District.

When asked what inspired the creation of Tiresias, the students said, ”We realized that many of our family members struggled with vision loss as they grew older. This led to numerous issues in our lives that disrupted us in some unique way. We decided that we wanted to create something that could help navigate and identify objects that blind or vision-impaired people face daily. We want to help our friends and family who struggle/will struggle with vision impairment or possibly blindness to feel safe if the issue arises. We decided to take our passion for Computer Science and used Artificial Intelligence as a gateway to support our app’s overall structure by using all our unique skill sets.”

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.