Carmel Mission’s Junipero Serra School has been named “Best in State” for California middle schools in the Verizon Innovative App Challenge for this year. This competition requires teams of students to identify a problem at their school or broader community and then create a concept for an app that helps solve the problem. All 7thand 8th graders at JSS worked very hard in teams of six students for the first two months of the school year under the leadership of their teacher Mrs. Sunny Cordoba who submitted the ideas to Verizon.
Junipero Serra School was one of 95 middle and high schools nationwide to be selected from over 1200 submissions to go on to regional competition for the western states. Regional winners will then compete for national recognition. The initial prize to the group of six 8th graders included android tablets for each student and their teacher as well as a $5,000 grant for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) education at the school. Best in Nation winners will earn an additional $15,000 grant, and the team will have the opportunity to develop their app and travel to Nashville, TN to present it.
The winning app is called FITA (Foreign Immigration to America). The app is designed as an all-in-one resource for immigrants to the United States. It includes a translator, a link to job listings, historical resources for their region, lists of local hospitals and clinics, the weather, and information about laws, rules, and regulations. The purpose of the app is to make immigrants feel as welcome as possible in our country.
The JSS team has another opportunity to win an additional grant for the school through a Fan Favorite competition. Verizon will be accepting votes for the favorite apps voted on by fans. Junipero Serra welcomes the support of all for their project. To vote, text the code ‘FITA1’ to the number 22333. It is free to vote, but your phone may only vote one time. The school would really appreciate your vote any time from January 11 to January 31, 2016. Please encourage your family and friends to support Team FITA.