San Diego, California (NAPSI) - A national competition now in its third year is challenging teams of middle- and high-school students to develop concepts for mobile apps that can solve a school or community problem.

The Verizon Innovative App Challenge will award eight Best in Nation teams cash grants of $20,000 to support STEM programs at their schools, and tablets for each team member. Winners also will learn how to turn their concepts into working mobile apps. The deadline for submission is Nov. 24, 2014; winners will be named in January 2015.

To enter the challenge, student teams, working with a faculty advisor, identify a problem and propose a mobile app concept to address it. No coding experience or mobile devices are needed. A panel of STEM educators and corporate innovators will judge the app concepts. Prior winning apps enable the vision-impaired to navigate inside buildings independently; simulate chemistry experiments for classrooms that can’t afford supplies; help reduce CO2 emissions through conservation education, and more. Contest rules, registration and additional in_formation are available at http://verizon.com/VZAppChallenge2014.

The App Challenge was launched in 2012 by the Verizon Foundation in partnership with the Technology Student Association, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Center for Mobile Learning @ The Media Lab, and Samsung Telecommunications America. It’s open to teams from all public, private and parochial middle and high schools. Best in State winners will compete at the region level, and 24 Best in Region winners will vie for the Best in Nation awards.