BoilerMake: A Weekend of Hacks, Hackers, and Dodgeball or a New-aged Career Fair?

Matt Terry
February 11, 2014

I went to my first university-based hackathon: BoilerMake.

A hackathon is straight forward, but BoilerMake was no simple hackathon. Students from across the country came together to build something/anything in one weekend. Projects ranged from modifying household electronics (microwaves that can respond to text messages, and robotic vacuum cleaners that can lay dominoes in a pattern), to digital social lounges (for streaming music, or for sharing photos), to analyzing and crunching data from different APIs, and even some projects with cool peripherals (Kinect and Oculus Rift for example).

SEP attended BoilerMake because we are passionate about creating things. (We have our own weekend hackathons as well!) Many times, the best way to learn something is by doing something and these hackathons are filled with just that…doing!

We were a sponsor of BoilerMake alongside technology giants (Google and Apple), small private software firms (similar to us, Clarity Consulting), and relevant product producers (Twilio and mongoDB) because we wanted to see this event succeed. We understand the value in getting students involved in creating things beyond class projects.

The crew behind BoilerMake put together an incredible event with great students, sponsors, talks, and food. After talking with some of the organizers, their vision was clear: to create an environment where students, mentors, and employers can be immersed in a weekend full of events. The crew at BoilerMake wanted to be certain that students and sponsors had multiple chances to interact shoulder-to-shoulder, whether that was a Q & A during one of many tech-talks, 1-on-1 time during the hackathon, or engaging in some physical activities such as dodgeball and rock-climbing. That’s right, we played dodgeball at a hackathon.

I believe that the Purdue students summed it up perfectly…BoilerMake is a new way of connecting with great talent, it is “CareerFair 2.0”.

I am so excited that we were part of the first BoilerMake hackathon.
We learned a ton this weekend, and we are eager to take what we learned to the second BoilerMake event.