Area high school students developing winning app for disaster assistance
BATON ROUGE - An East Baton Rouge high school student attending the Louisiana School for Math, Science, and the Arts in Natchitoches is one of five in a group competing to win an award for an app that solves problems in local communities.
The group, which also includes a student from Livingston Parish, developed Disastra – intended to be used as an aid in the event of an emergency. The app holds information on emergency contacts, check lists for keeping safe in emergencies and methods of communicating with family, loved ones and the authorities in a situation of danger.
Students involved are Eli Langley of Elton, Felecia Foy of Benton, Timothy Shertzer of Pineville, John Bernard of Baton Rouge and Connor Elsea of Denham Springs.
"We chose to build this app after considering and discussing Louisiana's tragic history with hurricanes and the pain it caused some areas of our state," Elsea said. "Originally, we thought of an idea for a simplistic hurricane aid app, but realized the process and information were similar and could be passed to other situations. The app is now slated to aid all disaster-type situations."
Already, the team won best in the state. Their high school received $5,000 and each student was given a mobile tablet.
The competition is part of the Verizon Innovative App Challenge, a nationwide contest for middle- and high-school aged students. It is a unique, hands-on learning program that teaches collaboration, critical thinking, problem solving and entrepreneurship as well as STEM skills and coding.
To help LSMSA win the nationwide App Challenge Fan Favorite award and $15,000 more, text DISASTRA1 to 22333 by Sunday, Jan. 31. If LSMSA receives the most votes, it wins.
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