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Tech News

Students learn benefits of hackathons
By Gale Horton Gay
Sep 24, 2013, 19:15

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Last year, hackathons popped up across the country at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and young people flocked to them. Not to worry. Hackathons aren’t as ominous as they may sound. In fact, hackathons are extremely positive events, bringing together coders, designers and others to create something — software, website, etc. The kicker is, it’s all done in a super-short timeframe — from 24 hours to over a weekend.

In early 2013, Black Founders, a San Francisco organization dedicated to promoting diversity in the technology industry, launched its first hackathon, HBCUHacks, in Atlanta. The event attracted students from Atlanta University Center, which includes Morehouse College, Spelman College and Clark Atlanta University. Others followed at Howard University and Morgan State University.

“These events were significant, mainly because this was the first hackathon for many of the students,” says Hadiyah Mujhid, a co-founder and director of education outreach with Black Founders. “In addition, the hackathon was promoted to other majors outside of computer science, so, for some students, this was their first time coding.”

The events are staged as competitions, and the best projects are awarded prizes such as cash, tablets and games. And, there are other potential benefits.

“Our sponsors are also hiring for interns and full-time positions,” the site states. “Come to the event, meet the startups working with us, and possibly land a position.”

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A virtual spokesperson for black technology, BlackEngineer aspires to serve as leading news and information provider on the advancements in black technology with deep insights into black engineering, black entrepreneurs, black education, and historically black colleges and universities (HBCU). In fact, BlackEngineer is one of the very few to promote the achievements of black technology. The Black engineer of the year awards (BEYA) is one of our successful ventures to promote black technology, progress and achievements made in black technology, and the sentiments of the Black community in the US, the UK, Caribbean, and Africa.


Black Entrepreneurs

Black technology entrepreneurs are increasingly providing the horsepower that drives the global economy. Over the last two decades, black entrepreneurs have created more jobs, and contributed much more to the economic expansion of the Black community as a whole, than any black pastor or politician. Black entrepreneurs are taking risks and building businesses that generate economic growth and increase prosperity in underserved areas, as more minority-owned and minority-focused businesses emerge, willing to serve the financial needs of Black entrepreneurs. US Black Engineer & Information Technology magazine's annual list of Top Black Technology Entrepreneurs reflects the expanding scope of leading Black entrepreneurs in information technology, homeland security, and defense.