The CodePost Computer Science Education Scholarship is a $500 award created to support and inspire students who further computer science education in their schools and communities. All GPAs will be considered. Learn more here.
Upcoming Hackathons and Conferences!
Amazon Raise-Up Buildathon: Develop (or update) sustainable solutions to challenges faced by nonprofits and cultural institutions. Teams must integrate at least one AWS service into their solution and fulfill other criteria. Total prizes include $31,000 in various cash awards and meetings with the AWS nonprofit team. Deadline is July 15, 2020. Details and registration: https://bit.ly/AmznRu20u.
Atlassian Codegeist 2020: Build innovative cloud apps on Atlassian in one of two categories. Available prizes total $315,000, including cash and virtual meetings with the Atlassian R&D team. Deadline is July 13, 2020. Details and registration: https://bit.ly/Codegeist2020u.
Facebook Online Hackathons (Series 2): Choose one of three innovative tech tracks: augmented reality, artificial intelligence, or messaging. Up to $21,000 in cash prizes and virtual meetings with Facebook engineers may be awarded. Deadline: June 24, 2020. Details and registration: https://bit.ly/FB2020H2u.
Square Small Business Hackathon: Build (or update) apps using Square developer tools to help sellers grow and adapt in categories such as retail, food and beverage, and healthcare. Participants must be residents of Australia, Canada, Japan, the United Kingdom, or the United States (see full rules for details). Teams will compete for $36,000 in prizes, including cash, directed donations, and meetings with the Square team. Deadline: June 22, 2020. Details and registration: https://bit.ly/SqSBH20u.
Out 4 Undergrad (O4U) Conference: This annual conference for high-achieving LGBTQ undergraduate students will be held virtually in 2020, and applications to participate with the $90 conference fee waived are being accepted now. Meet recruiters from companies and graduate programs, find mentors, and connect with peers. Deadline to apply: June 14, 2020. Details and registration at https://www.outforundergrad.org.
Why do hackathons?
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.)
More on hackathons
UIC students have placed highly in these hackathon events:
- BuiltWorlds Hackathon 2019: Riccardo Pressiani, Matteo Foglio, Guido Muscioni, Francesco Sgherzi, Chiara Gambacorta, and Giulia Soresini, Grand Prize
- Google Tech Challenge 2019: 3rd place, 5th place
- MIT Energy Hack 2018: Chirag Soni, MS ’19
- BuiltWorlds Hackathon 2018: Giovanni Agugini Bassi, Iacopo Olivo, and Francesco Pinci, all MS ’19
- Mobility Hackathon Chicago: The Roiti (team of five MS ’19 students)
Research Experiences for Undergraduates
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.