Student Opportunities

Career planning? Consider the Cybersecurity Talent Initiative

The Cybersecurity Talent Initiative is a public-private partnership aimed at recruiting and training a world-class cybersecurity workforce. Participants gain work experience and could receive up to $75,000 in student loan assistance. Virtual info sessions are planned for October 23 at 11 a.m. Central (register here) and October 28 at 4 p.m. Central (register here).

Visit the Talent Initiative website

Upcoming Hackathons and Conferences!

Virtual Cybersecurity Summit for University Students: Explore career opportunities in cybersecurity at this online conference, scheduled for November 10 from 2pm to 8:30pm Central. The event is sponsored by Trend Micro Initiative for Education. Details and registration here. UIC was given this registration code for students to use when signing up: Novirus2020

Developer Circles Community Challenge: Put your own spin on developer education by creating written tutorials on the capabilities of Facebook technologies. Up to $133,000 in prizes. Deadline: October 26. Details and registration:

TypingDNA Hackathon: Create anything you can think of—as long as it includes TypingDNA API calls. Show us what you’d build given that you can recognize people based on their typing. Prizes total $110,000. Deadline is October 31. Details and registration:

Quick Base Virtual Hackathon: Address today’s biggest challenges using Quick Base’s low-code platform. Prize pool totals $250,000, including cash, promotion, and more. Deadline: November 16. Details and registration:

Alexa Skills Challenge – Beyond Voice: Build (or update) an Alexa skill that uses APL for Audio (beta), APL, motion and sensing APIs OR Alexa Web API for Games to add audio, visuals, or motion to your experience. The $97,000 prize pool includes a trophy, cash, participation prizes, and more. Deadline: November 17. Details and registration:

Microsoft Azure Hack for Social Justice: Build an application prototype with Azure that helps empower communities and create change around one or more social justice issues. The application should be functional with real or sample data. Check details page for information about who is eligible to participate. Compete for a $10,000 prize pool. Deadline: November 20. Details and registration: Build it Better Challenge: Build a new monday app that allows teams to improve collaboration, communication, teamwork, or simply make daily work a more joyful in one of the required categories (CRM, software development, construction and field workers). Prizes total $84,000, including Teslas, promotion, consultation and more. Submission period runs through November 30. Details and registration:

Why do hackathons?

participants in Google Tech Challenge

We strongly encourage UIC CS students to sign up for hackathon competitions. Here are some reasons why:

  • Meeting new people. Not just potential employers—who might watch a hackathon for potential new hires—but also fellow students.
  • Developing your résumé. Hackathons let you showcase the skills you’ve developed in class and build some new ones.
  • Enhancing your job interviews. Hackathons make you a more interesting interviewee. You can talk about how you approached a problem, the solutions you considered, and which skills you brought to the table.
  • Winning! (Of course.)

Research Experiences for Undergraduates

student attending an REU at another university

Research experiences for undergraduates—called REUs for short—offer undergraduate students the opportunity to complete career-building research projects over the summer. REUs are competitive (with students chosen for the research positions by application) and often are held at universities other than your home institution. They are sponsored with funding from the National Science Foundation and typically come with a stipend that you can use to cover living expenses and other costs.

REUs make excellent résumé entries and offer valuable hands-on experience that you can talk about in job interviews. If you have your eye on a master’s degree or PhD after graduation, REUs provide a head start on building your research experience and could give you insight on what you might like to pursue in graduate school.

Think of REUs as a great way to get research experience while trying out living in a different place.