Congressional STEM Competition

House App Contest

For the first time, the House of Representatives is sponsoring a contest designed to encourage science, technology, education, engineering and math (STEM) education by challenging high school students around the country to create smart phone applications.

The 2014 House of Representatives Student App Challenge is a great opportunity for students to showcase their technical and creative abilities.  This competition challenges students to create a tablet and mobile App utilizing any commonly available platform between now and April 30, 2014.  Students can create their App either individually or in groups. 

The deadline for submissions is April 30, 2014. 

Students seeking to enter this contest will compete against other students from Nebraska’s Second Congressional District. A panel of judges from within the greater Omaha technical community will be appointed to grade all of the submitted Apps for the contest during the month of May.  The apps will be graded on the quality of the idea, the implementation of the idea, and the creator's excellence of coding. 

In late May/early June a ceremony will be held in Congressman Terry’s office to announce the contest winner(s).  The winning App will be displayed on an interactive video board in the United States Capitol Building in Washington, DC for one year, as well as featured on the official House of Representatives website,, for one year. 

Most everything regarding the App's design, functionality, coding, and use are up to the creators.  This will allow for students to demonstrate their creativity and knowledge of App creation.  However, there are some specific criteria for the competition:

1.   Each Contestant will be required to provide the following as part of the Submission:

  • A link to the Application Demonstration Video. ChallengePost supports YouTube or VIMEO. Please note that your entry may be judged in its entirety based on this video. It is important to demonstrate the scope and quality of your application in this video. No more than two minutes in length.
  • A link to the Developer Video. ChallengePost supports YouTube or VIMEO. The participant will describe how they created the app and what they learned. No more than one minute in length.
  • An entry form.
  • The source code for the app.

2.   After the Submission Period has ended, the submission cannot be modified in any way before the completion of judging.

3.   All submissions must be in English.

4.   An individual may appear on only one entry, either alone or as part of a team or up to four (4) members. 

5.   Submissions must not be indecent, defamatory, in obvious bad taste, demonstrate a lack of respect for public morals or conduct or adversely affects the reputation of congressional districts. 

6.   Submissions must not:

  • Be illegal under applicable laws;
  • Depict hatred, defame, threaten a specific community in the society or incite violence;
  • Contain vulgar language or violence; or
  • Contain pornography, obscenity or sexual activity.

7.   Submissions must

  • Be original;
  • Be solely owned by Contestant such that no other party has any rights or interest, whether known or unknown; and
  • Not violate the Intellectual Property, common law or privacy rights of other parties. 

8.   Criteria for judging will be based on the:

  • Quality of the idea (including creativity and originality)
  • Implementation of the idea (including user experience and design)
  • Demonstrated excellence of coding and programming skills

9.   Contestants will own the intellectual property rights to their Submission, but will grant to Congress and Administrator a royalty free license to, without limitation to:

  • Post the Submissions online;
  • Make the Winners available for the course of the Competition and one (1) month after the conclusion of the competition submission period; and
  • Utilize the submissions for noncommercial purposes for a period of 12 months after the conclusion of the competition submission period.

If you have any questions about the contest, please do not hesitate to contact my district office at 402.397.9944.


Can I Participate?

  1. Members of Congress must opt-in for their district to participate in this competition. If a Member does not opt-in, constituents in their district will be ineligible to participate. Find out if I am eligible.
  2. The Competition is open only to high school students who reside in a participating district or who are eligible to attend public high school in that district. Individuals submitting on behalf of teams must meet the eligibility requirements for individual Contestants

To Register

To enter, the student must create an account on and then register for the House Student App Contest under their participating Member of Congress’ profile during the Competition Submission Period. All entries must be an original in concept, design and execution.

  1. Register for the House Student App Challenge
  2. Register at

Resources for Students and Teachers