Source: United States House of Representatives – Representative Dean Phillips (MN-03)
December 21, 2020
MINNETONKA, MN – Today, Rep. Dean Phillips (MN-03) announced that Eden Prairie High School Senior Connor Holm won the 2020 Congressional App Challenge in Minnesota’s Third District for his app, the COVID-19 Information Provider. The app connects users with detailed local public health data, allowing Minnesotans to assess the risk of contracting COVID-19 in their community and arming them with information that can save lives.
“I was inspired to create this COVID-19 Information Provider after seeing the devastating effects of COVID-19,” said Connor Holm. “The best type of programming is when the results are beneficial to society. People should not have to live without knowing if the risk of COVID-19 in their area is high or low. I knew that my passion for programming and learning could solve this problem by showing the current risk and informing the user on the correct safety procedures when going into public areas. Knowing how to stay safe is vital and my project is a small step for society to take in stopping COVID-19 forever.”
“I am always so impressed by the passion, energy, and talent of our students,” said Rep. Phillips. “Now more than ever, we need thoughtful young people like Connor who care about our country and want to make a difference. It’s going to take all of us, working together, to get through this pandemic as healthy, economically sound, and prepared for the future as possible.”
The Congressional App Challenge was launched by the House of Representatives in 2014 to highlight the value of computer science and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) education. All middle and high school students living or attending school in Minnesota’s Third District were invited to participate. Submissions were scored based on originality, user experience, and demonstrated programming skills by a panel of local experts including:
- Casey Helbling, CEO of Software for Good, a nonprofit based in Minnesota focused on developing web and mobile applications for organizations working toward positive environmental and social change.
- Theresa Hendrickson, Computer Science Educator with Minnetonka High School
- Chris Kratoska, Director of Code Ninjas Chanhassen, a national organization that brings young students together to help educate on coding through fun and exciting curriculum.
Click here to watch Connor explain more about his COVID-19 Information Provider app, which he created after he was the only student in his AP Chemistry class who chose to return to in-person learning. Connor will be invited to participate in the House of Code Capitol Hill Reception in Washington, D.C. and his app will be featured alongside winners from around the country on the Congressional App Challenge website and displayed in the U.S. Capitol for one year.