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Each year, Congress hosts the Congressional App Challenge (CAC), a middle and high school student-based competition set to enhance to technology creativity and increase student participation in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) fields. The tournament allows students from across the country to compete against their peers by creating and promoting their smartphone and computer apps.

Congresswoman Barbara Comstock (VA-10) is making the most of the opportunity to promote interest in the STEM fields throughout her district by extending the invitation to students in the Northern Virginia area.

“We are excited to see this year’s innovations as high school students across Virginia’s 10th District come together in teams and as individuals to use their coding skills to create new apps,” Comstock said via a press release.

In its first three years, the Congressional App Challenge has produced over 600 challenges across 42 states, with at least 2,400 apps created by nearly 9,000 students.

“As Chairwoman of the Research and Technology subcommittee, I see the importance of innovation in technology every day as we work to keep the United States competitive in our global economy. The students who participate in the Congressional App Challenge show a critical interest in these important technological endeavors at a young age and I am confident that each of them will go on to great successes in the STEM fields and perhaps serve our nation,” the congresswoman added.

CAC will run through October 15, 2018, with all “original” apps being accepted for submission. Eligible students many sign up for the challenge as individuals or in groups of up to four students, and will be judged by a panel chosen by the Office of Congresswoman Barbara Comstock.

An eligible app may consist of any particular topic, “provided it is original, appropriate, and has been made within the last year,” as stated in the competition guidelines.