We Connect the Dots (WCTD) is hosting an international hackathon for students 13-18 years-old that will teach attendees how to code in HTML5 while using the Microsoft Azure solutions platform. The event brings Long Island students into collaborative contact with students from Brooklyn, Australia, and two other potential sites in Philadelphia and North Carolina (pending school board approval). The event takes place in January of 2016 over 48 hours, during which students will learn valuable skills in computer science, collaboration, team building, and time management. Students will be tasked with using what they learn at the event to code a custom app, website, or mobile application, the purpose for which is to address a global social need or problem facing humanity. The program will bring awareness to the ways in which technology and teamwork can make a positive global impact. An important component of the hackathon is promoting importance of diversity and bridging the gap between communities, income levels and ethnicities. To that end, WCTD uses a custom algorithm (created by our student ambassadors and volunteer IT professionals) that sorts student registration data based on age, location, income level, skill level, and gender, ensuring diversity in our student teams, and an opportunity for students to work with others from outside their own community. The value in the merging of different perspectives has been extremely successful in our prior programs. Students who join us for the hackathon will compete to create the best project they can, with great prizes for the first, second and third place teams at each location. Students will also be treated to important talks from real industry professionals, and instruction in coding and design from real IT experts. Students will depart with invaluable skills and a greater understanding of how their contributions can make a positive impact the world over.
Funded by Port Washington, NY (November 2015)