Emily, Cindy and Shadida are Grade 5 students with a big idea. On May 12, they took home the top prize at the University of Waterloo’s Technovation Challenge. This is a local tech competition that is part of the largest global tech entrepreneurship competition for girls. Technovation challenges girls from 10 to 18 years of age to build a business plan and mobile app that will address a community problem. This year, 170 girls and 80 female mentors from across the region took part in this fun event.

Our Grade 5 students won the competition with their innovative app called Bus Buddy. They identified a real life problem – unpredictable school bus arrival times – and then decided to create Bus Buddy to help solve it. The app tracks the school bus to cut down on wait times. Check out their Technovation pitch video:

Emily attends Mary Johnston PS, and Cindy and Shadida attend Laurelwood PS. Last year, Emily and Shadida were first introduced to coding in their Grade 4 Area Enrichment Class at Northlake Woods PS where they continue to develop their skills in this weekly enrichment program. The three girls have been working together to design, code and pitch their app since January – and their hard work has really paid off. They have advanced to the online global semi-finals, where they will have a chance to win a spot in the top 10 to pitch their app in California.

Congratulations Emily, Cindy and Shadida on your creative and unique app! We are all cheering for you and cannot wait to see how far you will go.