SEP kicked off its series of enrichment initiatives with its first student hackathon, held at two schools simultaneously: Urban Assembly Gateway School for Technology and Queens Vocational & Technical High School. With the event theme “Hello Small World”, students at the hackathon were tasked with building a project that used technology to bring people closer.
Students were challenged to create their projects using the design process. To do this, they had to identify a problem and then brainstorm, test, and iterate ideas in order to generate a final solution. The process gave students unique opportunities to test their ideas on paper before using computers, as well as refine their projects based on one another’s feedback. Students competed in categories including Most Innovative, Most Entertaining, and Best Presentation. Winners received scholarships for educational enrichment opportunities.
The eight-hour event drew middle and high school students from just about every corner of New York City. Here’s what some of them had to say about the hackathon:
The hackathon brought out some qualities I never knew I had. —Angel T.
I liked creating and executing a plan with my teammates, who were really nice. I made friends with them and even got their contact info. —David Z.
Not everything needs to be perfect because the small mistakes can make your project better. —Jordalin O.
I liked having to make friends and seeing their potential. I also liked receiving ideas/critique from my new found peers. —Peter R.