In The Classroom

Students create app for their high school

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Students and staff at Travis High School have a new technology tool at their disposal -- an Apple app, iTigers. THS students Nathan Constance, William O'Rosky, and Cordero Silva created the free app specifically for Travis to allow users access to homework assignments, campus news, sports information, fine arts, faculty, and clubs and organizations from either an Apple iPhone or iTouch.

iTigers was created by the three ninth-grade students, who saw the need for such a tool and took the initiative to make it happen. Constance, O'Rosky and Silva are all self-taught, registered Apple app developers, having studied and purchased the needed Xcode software to design their school's app.

The whole creative process took some time, but they believe it was well worth their effort.

"We actually thought of creating an app last year in middle school," said Constance, "but we were leaning more toward a gameapp."

It wasn't until the three entered high school and began downloading homework assignments from their personal computers that they decided to create iTigers. In October 2010, the trio approached their school's Instructional Technology Specialist, Jackie McMahon, with the idea. She immediately offered her support, knowing that an app would be a great benefit to students.

The three admit that at times the project seemed a bit overwhelming.

"There were times when we wanted to give up, after dealing with certain issues like syntactical errors, but our parents encouraged us to keep going," said O'Rosky.

Constance, O'Rosky and Silva are still working on fine tuning the iTigers app and are receiving continued support from administrators and staff.

"We didn't realize how involved this project would be, but we're getting a lot of support from our principal, our teachers and Miss McMahon," said Silva, "and students actually like what we've done."

"I am extremely proud of these young men," said McMahon. "They saw a need, went out and purchased the software, and fulfilled that need by creating an app for our school. And, they did it all with little technology background."

Travis hosted an official roll-out of the app on March 29 in the school's library. Travis High School is currently the only Fort Bend ISD school to have a registered Apple app.

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