Hip Hop Hacktivist blends together three of our favorite things: music, community and technology. This free hackathon targets youth in New York and uses the influence of hip-hop culture to introduce youth to the tech industry. On Saturday, high school students, some who have limited or no coding experience, will gather at the Tumblr Inc. offices 21st Street in Manhattan for a social coding event where programmers and designers will be collaborate over a short period of time to create a new software application.
They printed up a custom circle sticker in all black, with a type-drive design. Their event branding is set off in angle brackets for a nice nod to the tech side of the event, and then HIP HOP in all caps and a strong sans serif font. At the bottom, the organizing group The Art DepartmENT gets a pop of color with a red treatment and a grey foundation color. This is a bold sticker for a bold idea.
There will be plenty of hip hop, prizes and of course, tech. They are promoting this as a “Kendrick Lamar Inspired Hackathon” with the theme “We Gon’ Be Alright.” This program is a partnership with VICE Impact, which means there’s a platform for this idea to scale.
If you’re not familiar with hackathons, we sponsor many Major League Hackathon events, and this one falls under the guidelines. Major League Hacking (MLH) is the official student hackathon league. Each year, they produce 200+ weekend-long competitions where over 65,000 students globally participate in computer science tasks and innovation exercises. MLH is an engaged and passionate community that consists of the next generation of technology leaders and entrepreneurs, and we are proud to align with their mission.
These events typically last anywhere from 24 hours to a few days and usually revolve around a theme—this one’s hip hop. For attendees there will be food and swag, and most importantly, there are groups with professional designers and developers who will provide the equipment needed to execute these great ideas. All that’s needed is that participants bring their creativity and imagination, and the design and development mentors will guide teams through the whole process.
Each student will be supported by two trained software developers and one trained design professional. Students will work together as a team to brainstorm and come up with an idea based on the theme of the event. Students will utilize teamwork, effective communication, time-management, and all the necessary skills involved in building a successful web app. Designers will assist students in sketching ideas out and wire framing. After the ideation stage, developers will bring the students’ ideas to life and the students will assist in the creative decisions that are to be made. Students will also work together to create a four minute presentation that describes and demonstrates their idea. Prizes will be distributed to various groups based on certain criteria. (From the Hip Hop Hacktivist site.)
Hip Hop Hacktivist will also include a music showcase and a panel that involves a conversation between music professionals and tech professionals so that all of these young kids learn about the many opportunities in the tech industry. Here’s to that! Go forth and code, young ones.