James Barrood, president and CEO of NJ Tech Council, said the challenge will help foster the next generation of tech talent in New Jersey.
“With the increasing popularity of hackathons, this virtual event is exactly what New Jersey needs to help foster the next generation of tech talent. Through this partnership, participants will have greater access to resources and tools to take their projects to the next level. Students helping develop meaningful apps, which will aid our state's military veterans, provide the perfect example of why New Jersey leads in nurturing and retaining tech talent.”
Mukesh Patel, founder and chief executive officer of JuiceTank, said he’s excited to see the outcome of the challenge.
“JuiceTank is delighted to be hosting AT&T for the commencement of the AT&T Civic App Challenge,” Patel says. “AT&T and its partners' efforts enhance the commitment we must uphold to our nation’s heroes. As a community of technologists, entrepreneurs and small business owners, we are excited to see what the outcome will be from the best innovators New Jersey has to offer.”
J. Michael Schweder, president, AT&T Mid-Atlantic, said the challenge will help showcase New Jersey’s innovation economy and will inspire developers to create mobile applications with a civic purpose, including apps that will help the state’s military veterans and their families.
“AT&T's commitment to technology innovation in New Jersey grows out of our deep roots in the state and our multi-billion dollar nationwide investment in the mobile communications network of the future,” said Schweder. “This challenge is a great way to showcase New Jersey’s innovation economy by inspiring students, technologists and innovators to develop mobile apps that can improve lives and strengthen communities.”
Schweder added that the challenge will place a special emphasis on apps that will help the state’s military veterans and their families access information they need.
At the kickoff, Lloyd Deans from Vets4Warriors added: “The civic app challenge will be a huge benefit to help Veterans and families identify resources all in one place in the palm of their hands.”
Current higher-education partners include: Association of Independent Colleges and Universities in New Jersey; New Jersey Association of State Colleges and Universities; New Jersey Council of County Colleges; New Jersey Institute of Technology; Rowan University; Rutgers University; and Stevens Institute of Technology.
Other partners include: Helmets to Hardhats; Heroes to Heroes; Innovation New Jersey;Operation Chill Out New Jersey; Somerset County Business Partnership; Southern New Jersey Development Council; AT&T Veterans, an employee resource group; andVets4Warriors.
The challenge runs from Sept. 16, 2015 through Nov. 13, 2015. Coders, designers, entrepreneurs and technologists can register for the challenge and get more information at http://attnj.njcivicapp.com/. The winners will be announced at a special event at Rowan University in December 2015.
A panel of judges will select one winner from each region of the state (North, Central and South). The three regions were identified based upon a NJ Department of Transportation map.
Each regional winner will receive $3,000. The grand prize winner as selected by the judges will receive an additional $10,000, plus the chance to work with a regional incubator that will provide business, leadership and other guidance.
To make the challenge New Jersey-centric, the challenge is open only to individuals who are residents of New Jersey and/or post-secondary students currently enrolled in a New Jersey college or university listed on the New Jersey Office of the Secretary of Higher Educationwebsite. For teams, at least 50 percent of the team members must be either current residents of New Jersey or attend one of the state’s colleges or universities. AT&T employees and their family members are not eligible.
Submitted apps will be judged on potential impact on New Jersey; execution; impact on military veterans and/or their families; and creativity/novelty.
Follow the challenge on Twitter at #NJATT. More information is available at http://attnj.njcivicapp.com/.