Student made app, Find Follow Your Passion, wins first in state

By Isabelle Rodgers
Entertainment Editor

When business education teacher Paul Hennig woke up last Tuesday, he was disappointed by the news that school was still open despite the brutally cold temperature. It was not until he checked his email when things started to take a turn for the better.
Walking into associate principal Scott McDermott’s office, Hennig was just as excited and fired up as McDermott, and after they shared the brief moment of congratulations and overall excitement, Hennig was off to tell his students.
Hennig and business education teacher Frank Novak chose seven of their students and invited them to help make an app for the Verizon App Challenge. Weeks of hard work and coding finally payed off when the app they made, Find Follow Your Passion (FFYP), won best in state out of over one thousand entries.
FFYP is supposed to help students pick out what courses to take in the future based on their interests. The app would allow more interconnectedness between schools in our district through the sharing of class information and the feedback from students.
The app shows the classes that are offered at Prospect, at community colleges in our area, and the online courses. FFYP gives indepth information at each class offered here at Prospect. The information available is a brief overview of what the class is about and how many semesters it is.
“Even if we don’t end up winning [best in region and the nation], we are still going to try our best to have the app used at Prospect and make it on our own.” team member Mitchell Tapia said.
The seven students that Hennig and Novak chose to be on their app development team include senior Michael Morikado, senior Kishan Trivedi, junior Matt Culliton, junior Andrew Brooks, junior Mitchell Tapia, junior Eric Nowak, and sophomore Jimmy McDermott.
Because FFYP won first in state, the app moves on to the best in region competition. If the app wins best in region, the team wins $5,000 and the chance to win best in the nation.
“It was actually a big surprise,” Tapia said. “[The team] went into it just wanting to make the app, and it was a fun experience to do it all, but when we ended up winning state it was a big shock to all of us. It really showed us that anything is possible and this was a good idea that we should keep pushing forward.”
To learn more about the app challenge and prizes