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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Robert Hurt (R-Virginia) today announced the winner of the first annual Congressional Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Contest, which was created to encourage students to participate in STEM areas of study. The inaugural STEM Contest was open to high school students across the nation, inviting them to create software applications for mobile devices. A team of Franklin County High School students, under the guidance of their teacher, Dr. William Schmachtenberg, won the contest for the Fifth District, including Matt Brosinski, Darius Hale, Brandon Hollandsworth, and Richard Hall. Their winning app, entitled “Lunar Explorer,” allows users to explore the surface of the moon and test their lunar knowledge.

Upon winning the contest, Matt Brosinski said, “It’s so awesome we won! We put a massive amount of time into it, so it’s nice to see the effort paid off.” Congressman Hurt added, “Congratulations to Matt, Darius, Brandon and Richard for their impressive display of software application knowledge and creativity. All of the students’ submissions were full of ingenuity and imagination, and we were inspired by these young people’s abilities. It is important that we foster the growth of the STEM education fields, as those who excel in these areas of study will undoubtedly propel us forward in future innovations.”

Background Information on the STEM Contest:

  • Submissions to the contest were required to create two videos; one describing the software application and another describe the way in which it would be developed.
  • The contest was open to all high school students throughout the country, and each Congressional District named a winning submission.

You may view a video about the winning submission below, or by clicking here. You may download the winning app by clicking here.