You have your perfect resume, cover letter, and updated LinkedIn profile. You even considered registering for a free course so you can start your tech industry career. So what else can you do to get experience and land the desired job? Hackathons!
Hackathons, or ”technology races” as they are called, are a great way to get experience in IT in a matter of hours. These events bring together developers, graphic designers, marketing managers, professionals in various fields, entrepreneurs, and other tech enthusiasts. At Hackathons, you can improve your technical skills and problem-solving abilities. Also, these events offer great networking opportunities.
If you decided to participate in a hackathon, here are a few tips to keep in mind:
- Find a hackathon that’s right for you. There are hackathons for all skill levels, so make sure to find one that’s appropriate for your experience. You can google a list of hackathons online, or search by location on the events site.
- Search in advance. Many hackathons organizers open the registration months before the start. So you should examine the calendar of events for the next 3 to 6 months.
- Form a team. Hackathons are done in groups. So gather your like-minded friends and assemble a team or spread the word among your acquaintances. Don’t worry if you don’t manage to form a team. Some organizers offer the possibility to form groups within the event. You can find people to work with at the hackathon itself.
- Be prepared. Have a stable connection, and make sure your tools/equipment are charged. Also, familiarize yourself with the technologies you’ll use during the event.
- Think about your product & solution. Hackathons are topic-specific events. Choose the one that is closer to your area of interest. Usually, these events approach tech verticals like AgTech, HealthTech, FinTech, EdTech, etc. And at least contemplate the product you are willing to develop.
- Last but not least: Have fun! Hackathons are a great way to learn new skills and meet new people, so make sure to enjoy the experience! Don’t worry too much about the outcome, and remember that the process is just as necessary as the end result.
Now that you know the tips & tricks for participating in your first Hackathon, you may ask yourself where to find the best free and online Hackathons!?
You can start by googling ”online hackathons for beginners”. Platforms like Eventbrite, Devpost, Taikai, Hackathon, and Major League Hacking list many of the world’s online and beginner-friendly hackathons. You can search here by theme, format (online, in-person, hybrid), and level of experience. Just find the one that’s right for you!
Here are some hackathons which will take place in the near future and that you may find interesting:
- DeveloperWeek 2023 Hackathon is the largest challenge-driven in-person & virtual hackathon, co-located with DeveloperWeek 2023. DeveloperWeek hackathons regularly attract over 600+ participants, and the international developer community is invited to participate in person & online this year. The Hackathon is open to everyone, but pre-registration is required. You can be a developer, designer, biz dev person, idea person, or anything in between.
- Hack Around the World 2 is about supporting cultural diversity and heritage around the world. The solutions can vary from supporting travelers in their journey to creating an app that shares more about the ethnicity and diversity of the place. The Hackathon is open to all skill levels, from beginners to the most veteran developers.
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