WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. - Although “March Madness” is near, it was all about “Tech Madness” at the County Center in White Plains on Friday, as officials kicked off the second annual “Smart Mobile App Development.”
Hours before the county’s top athletes were set to take the court for the sectional basketball semifinals, STEM-savvy students representing nearly 40 tri-state high schools and universities were the stars of the show as they stormed the court during a pep rally to kick off the two-month competition.
Following introductions and pleasantries, the teams hit the ground running, breaking off into groups as they prepare to develop a mobile application that improves an aspect of daily life for people over 65-years-old.
Two months from now, the teams will present their final apps to a panel of expert judges at Pace University. The winners will receive cash prizes and paid internships within the county or at a local business.
Additionally, the winning team will have the opportunity to work with Pace’s Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems to launch their app in the App Store, receiving full rights and access to make updates.
“The competition showcases the extraordinary talents of our region’s future generation in ways that help benefit our seniors,” Rob Astorino, who could not attend the pep rally, said in a statement. “It’s a double win. We’ve created a platform for students to test their technology skills, while our seniors benefit from applications produced by those skills.”
Before the teams - sporting names such as Koding Kids (Fox Lane High School), The Hateful 8 Minus 1 (Mahway High School) and Pal Tech (Palisade Prep) - were announced, the band Marching Cobras performed to give the arena the feeling of a big time sporting event.
Jonathan Hill, the Interim Dean of Seidenberg encouraged the community to get in on the action using social media with the tags #WestchesterSmart and #AppBowl.
“It’s great to celebrate like-minded individuals who bring a contagious enthusiasm for creativity and technology,” he said. “It’s all about (the students) using your talents, skills and insights to make the world a better place.
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