First ever HackTheVille comes to Sayreville

Rehat Singh, Editor-in-Chief

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On Saturday, April 28 for the first time at Sayreville War Memorial High School, the school’s only computer science teacher, Mrs. Conry hosted the first hackathon in the school’s cafeteria.

That Saturday morning, over 30 kids from our school showed up along with former SWMHS alumnae as well as local tech directors. The schedule for the entire day was broken up and given to the members of the event prior, for the entirety of the event would last up to 12 hours. With breakfast and lunch provided, everyone who in attendance was ready to code.

“Hackathons are actually relatively new concept,” began Conry, “and they’ve only been around for a couple of years. I think hackathons are such a great way to get people involved into computer coding. You don’t even have to be good at coding to be here. You’re just going to get a little exposure.”

And she was right. Many of the students that attended the hackathon were not even computer science students, but instead, just wanted to know what the hackathon was as a means of exposure and curiosity.

But what really topped the hackathon guest list was Shawn Milochik, head of the tech department in the local technology company Teltech. Passionate about coding, he mentored many of the students at the hackathon, and regularly met up with each table to discuss what each group was doing.

The former SWMHS alumnae also played mentors as well, one of them being NYU Digital Art Design teacher Jaycee Holmes.

“Coding is everywhere, even in art design,” began Holmes, “It takes time, dedication, and a lot of practice. Defiantly not something you can learn in just a day or a month.”

Indeed, people invest years in coding. And the crazy part isn’t just the time, it’s the fact that computer science as a whole is a very developing area. The format of Java right now won’t even look remotely the same in the next couple of years.

When asked if there will be another hackathon next year, Conry enthusiastically agreed. “Oh definitely. I want to do one every year. But the only problem this year was that I had a hard time advertising. For next year, I want to spend more time promoting the hackathon so more people can come here. Coding is hard, but it can be a lot of fun once you get the hang of it.”

For all you potential coders out there, make sure to keep your eyes peeled for the next SWMHS Hackathon! You just might love it.

 

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