ROC Youth Hackfest challenges children in Rochester to use technology for social good

On 14 May, the ROC Youth HackFest gathered students from Brighton and Pittsford Central school districts in the Greater Rochester region to get involved in a youth hackathon. The event was organized by iCanCode Club – an after-school community hub where lower and middle school kids (grades 1-12) can learn to code and use technology tools – with the support of AT&T and Digital Rochester.

For eight hours, participants learned how to collaborate for building apps, games, websites, animations and interactive stories related to cyberbullying and internet safety. The teams were evaluated based on teamwork, coding and design skills. Mentors from different colleges and tech companies assisted the children on their projects. In the end, a panel of local tech experts, community leaders and education experts evaluated each team. Submissions were scored based on potential impact, quality of execution and creativity.

Fourteen students took home awards for their social innovation projects. It is expected that this type of event may encourage students to seek future career opportunities available in the field of information technologies.

According to Farah Sammour, founder of iCanCode: “So many of our youth have the potential for high achievement in computer science, but have not had the opportunity to develop skills in computer science. We want to find them, introduce them to other coding enthusiasts, help them develop their minds and skills and show parents and educators how to cultivate young talent.”

For more information about the event visit RoC Youth Hack Fest

Additional Sources: Brighton Post