BCIT Geographic Information Systems (GIS) students Jenna Kim, Habi Sivakaran, Callum Bowles, and Martina Todorova won first prize in a hackathon hosted by the City of Maple Ridge (the City).
The online hackathon ran from December 2020 to February 2021, the focus of which was ‘Connecting our Community through Technology.’ The City’s goal was to develop smart technologies to solve problems and create innovative ways of doing business, in order to best serve its communities.
Teams were tasked with creating sample apps and cultivating ideas to drive app modernization and digital transformation. Mike Hill, Program Head, GIS in the BCIT School of Construction and the Environment, says he is thrilled with the students’ accomplishment.
“The hackathon was a great opportunity for the students to demonstrate their rigorous work ethic and entrepreneurial skills, which ultimately led to their extraordinary first prize win.”
The students’ submission, INGAGE, is a real-time database allowing vulnerable and marginalized citizens to help create intelligent communities. The web/phone app allows users to assess the accessibility of residential commercial buildings, to help inform City policy decisions.
There were 576 registrants in total, with team sizes between one and four, for a total of 67 submissions. Mike applauds the GIS students’ initiative and professionalism for all the time and effort they put in, and for their remarkable achievement.
“It’s very exciting to see these students work together to translate what they’re learning in the classroom at BCIT, into an innovative tool helping solve real world problems,” says Mike.
The City says it looks forward to working with the students to bring their concept into production, which is expected to occur by September 2021.
The students, in turn, are thrilled to work with the City to implement their idea into a real-world setting.
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