2015 NIU Huskie Hack Wrap Up

Year in School: Graduate Student
Major: Public Administration
Hometown: Antioch, IL

After a whirlwind-weekend of coding, designing, and playing with cool tech like an Oculus Rift and Alienware laptops, the Huskie Hack is officially over. The projects were impressive to say the least. In 24-hours, teams were able to design apps and create software that contribute to civic engagement. Projects focused on issues like poverty, recycling, and disabilities.

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While many students were from NIU, there were also hackers from UW-Madison, UIUC, Northwestern, as well as out-of-state schools. There were even some high schoolers (and I think even a middle schooler or two) in attendance.

In addition to the hacking, hackers were able to participate in a number of activities on campus. There was a TED Talk from a NIU Communications Faculty David Gunkel entitled “How to Survive the Robot Apocalypse,” a cup stacking competition, and even cupcake decorating. In the morning, the hackers that hadn’t completely passed out after turning in their projects had activities like yoga and hanging out with puppies from TAILS.

There were tech representatives from Aldi, CGK Global, Major League Hacking, and others that set up booths for hackers to learn more about their companies. Some companies even held on-site interviews.

As someone who isn’t exactly the most technologically adept and hadn’t ever attended a Hackathon before, I wasn’t sure what to expect. Sitting in the ballroom, listening to all of those crazy-smart people, I can honestly say that I was blown away.

Written by Juliana Leprich