QHacks 2020: Queen's 5th annual hackathon

Posted on February 12, 2020

Students at QHacks

Mitchell Hall and the John Deutsch University Centre were home to hundreds of hackers on the weekend of January 31 to February 2. The fifth annual QHacks hackathon brought hundreds of hackers, speakers and mentors together to create, learn and share ideas.

Along with competitions for prizes, teams had the opportunity to meet with mentors and sponsors to learn about life after school, internships and job opportunities.

Peter Matthews, a second-year electrical engineering student, worked with three colleagues to compete for the TD Green Challenge and the City of Kingston’s Mayor’s innovation challenge. “I’m actually involved with the engineering society IT operations team, so I got a little bit of an introduction to web development that way,” he says. “I saw QHacks as an opportunity to apply what I’ve learned.” The team developed a website and mobile app to compile and share information about local companies that incorporate sustainable practices into their business.

Alumna Nicole Fitzgerald, a research engineer for Microsoft Research in Montreal, participated in the very first QHacks conference, and returned this year to provide career advice to participants. “For me, QHacks was this world-opening experience,” she says. “It introduced me to a lot of important people who were a huge part in building a life inside tech.”