The First Year hackChallenge

Being part of the KCL Tech Society means there’s always something useful happening. Our committee members make sure that our society is one of the the most active across the university. And I’m proud to say that I’m one of them.

After the success of HackKing’s, I wished more first year students had come. However, because they were only first year students (as I was), it was understandable that many of them lacked the confidence to dive into such a massive event. And so I decided to set up an event for the first year students that would be a taster hackathon, and that would introduce them to the concept of hackathons.

And thus, the hackChallenge was born!

The hackChallenge BannerWith the help of one of our lecturers Dr. Steffen Zschaler and third year Computer Science student Piotr Adam Galar, the first year representatives of the KCL Tech Society (Mark Ormesher, Mustafa Al-Bassam and I) organised the event in exactly one week. We didn’t expect so many students to come, but–oh boy–we were wrong.

The Students at the hackChallenge

We convinced over forty first year students to come in on a Saturday. That alone was an accomplishment. There were teams of three, and they had to program smart algorithms for an automated trading system that sold and bought shares for Kickstarter projects. The prizes were as follows:

  • First Place: £30 Amazon gift card for each team member
  • Second Place: £15 iTunes gift card for each team member
  • Third Place: £10 Pizza Hut gift card for each team member

And next year, we have bigger plans! So if you’re going to be an informatics student next year, we’ve got some surprises already being prepared for you!

Special thanks to the volunteers for all their help, and to Dr. Andrew Coles for his support! Also a thanks to the King’s Experience Fund for funding our event!

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