Student Competitions

Verizon Innovative Learning App Challenge Now Accepting Entries

The Verizon Innovative Learning app challenge is now accepting entries for the fifth annual competition. What is billed as a no-coding-skills-needed contest is intended to identify new apps created by middle and high school students.

National winners will earn up to a $20,000 cash prize for their school or organization. One middle and one high school team in each state and the District of Columbia will win $5,000 for their school or organization and a tablet for each member of the team. Teams representing nonprofit organizations and public, private and parochial schools are eligible.

Entries will be accepted through November 18 and winners will be announced in January or February. After the best app in each state is identified, they will move on to regional competitions and the winners at that level will win $15,000 for their school or organization and the opportunity to bring their app idea to life with the help of experts at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

There will also be a Fan Favorite winner selected by the public. The Best in Nation and Fan Favorite winners will present their apps at the 2017 Technology Student Association National Conference June 21 in Orlando.

"When we first launched the app challenge five years ago, we couldn't have foreseen the dramatic impact that it would have," said Verizon Director of Education Justina Nixon-Saintil, "not only on individual students but on entire schools across the country."

Apps developed during the challenge over the past four years have been downloaded more than 23,500 times. In 2015, a middle school team developed an app to help prevent concussions among athletes that caught the attention of the National Football League and invited them to present their innovation at NFL's annual meeting.

About the Author

Michael Hart is a Los Angeles-based freelance writer and the former executive editor of THE Journal.