Dordt College News

Dordt College employees publish apps for Android

September 10, 2013

During the summer, Dordt College held a week-long workshop for faculty and staff interested in learning to develop apps for Android. In a three-week period, three participants refined and finished apps that support the work of Dordt College in unique ways.

The Dordt College Map Tour, developed by Dordt College Computer Support Specialist Sandy Reitsma, provides an interactive map of the campus. The app allows users to browse through the buildings on campus, view the location of buildings on Google Maps, and creates directions to and from locations on campus.

Iowa Prairie Locator, developed by Environmental Studies Professor Jeff Ploegstra, identifies the locations of all prairies found in Iowa. Users can find specific prairie locations and receive driving directions.

Connections Photo Directory, developed by Mathematics Professor Gary De Young, works in conjunction with a subscription to the Connections Online Photo Directory found at It allows users to look up listings in their directory and then map an address, call, or email an individual.

Workshop Facilitator and Dordt College Computer Science Professor Kari Sandouka hopes that this workshop will translate into a class for Dordt students. “I hope that this is the first step to developing a class for non-computer science majors interested in creating and understanding app development,” said Sandouka. “For the most part, a three-credit class for students would be similar to the workshop, but instead of a quick and broad overview like what we were able to do during the workshop, there would be time for learning more about how apps work.”

The apps created this summer can be found using the Android App at Google Play or at There, users will also find an app that Sandouka had previously created called the DC Sound Machine, consisting of two buttons: the Dordt College crest that plays the college’s alma mater, and the Dordt College Defender logo that plays the fight song.

The workshop was possible because of a grant that supports learning and teaching innovations.

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