WHITE PLAINS, NY — More than 250 tech-savvy students from 36 high schools and colleges across the New York-metropolitan region today joined together to kick off the second annual #WestchesterSmart Mobile App Development Bowl at the Westchester County Center in White Plains.
Sponsored by Westchester County Executive Robert P. Astorino and Pace University’s Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems, the competition challenges students to develop mobile applications that improve an aspect of daily life for people ages 65 and older.
“The competition showcases the extraordinary talents of our region’s future generation in ways that help benefit our seniors,” Astorino said. “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. Last year was a great success, and we’re already building on it this year.”
Once again the theme of this year’s kickoff was basketball’s “March Madness” – but with a technology twist. The Marching Cobras of Westchester were on hand to energize the teams as they made their entrance into the County Center, for a giant pep rally. The teams then got down to work attending workshops to help them develop their apps.
Contestants will present their apps to a panel of expert judges on April 15 at Pace University’s campus in Pleasantville. Winners will receive cash prizes and paid internships with Westchester County and local businesses. The winning teams will also have an opportunity to work with the Seidenberg staff to launch their app on the App Store, receiving full rights and access to make updates.
Participants and their family and friends are encouraged to join in on the excitement on social media channels using the hashtags #WestchesterSmart and #AppBowl.
“I am personally excited to be a part of this year’s #WestchesterSmart Mobile App Development Bowl,” said Dr. Jonathan Hill, the Interim Dean of Seidenberg. “It’s great to celebrate like-minded individuals who bring a contagious enthusiasm for creativity and technology. Everyone at Seidenberg and Pace University alike is proud to support the work being done by these students to help those in need in our community.”
The inspiration behind the App Bowl was to help foster the next generation of talent in Westchester, while also serving the broader population. Known as New York’s Intellectual Capital, Westchester is proud of the fact that more than 47 percent of residents over the age of 25 have a bachelor’s degree, and 25 percent have advanced degrees. That gives Westchester the best-educated workforce of any county in the nation.
Meanwhile, according to the United Nations, more than 21 percent of the global population will be 65 or older by 2050, compared to 11.7 percent in 2013. This means that our economies and societies must adapt to the needs of the aging population.
Contest co-sponsors include Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA); Alzheimer’s Association; the Bee-Line bus system; The Bristal Assisted Living; Burke Medical Research Institute; Liberty Lines; NewYork-Presbyterian; Panasonic; Saberpoint, LLC; Tata Consultancy Services Limited; Westchester County Government and Pace University and its alumni, including Nancy Goodman ’77 and Virginia Letourneau ’85.
The following schools are participating in the App Bowl:
· Ardsley High School
· Bergen County Technical High School-Teterboro
· Bishop Kearney High School
· Blind Brook High School
· Byram Hills High School
· Clarkstown High School North
· Edward R. Murrow High School
· Fontbonne Hall Academy
· Fox Lane High School
· Harrison High School
· Hendrick Hudson High School
· High School for Health Professions and Human Services
· Horace Greeley High School
· Irvington High School
· John S. Burke Catholic High School
· Lincoln High School
· Mahwah High School
· Mamaroneck High School
· Mandela/Zollicoffer High School
· Mount Vernon High School
· Nellie A. Thornton High School
· Ossining High School
· Palisade Preparatory School
· Paul D. Schreiber High School
· Pleasantville High School
· Poly Prep Country Day School
· St. Francis Preparatory School
· Scarsdale High School
· Stuyvesant High School
· Westlake High School
· White Plains High School
Colleges and Universities
· Bronx Community College
· Manhattan College
· Pace University
· The College of Westchester
· SUNY Westchester Community College