Northland Hackathon teaching students computer science

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Over the weekend, Minnesota students participated in the second annual Northland Hackathon, an event that takes students into the world of computer science.

The group of 100 students who signed up were tasked to build technology for good with the help of professionals from Google, Uber, and Microsoft.

Students coded their own apps ideally used for fields in politics, mental health, and the environment. The Hackathon took place virtually to get as many rural students involved as possible.

Event organizer and Cloquet native Luke Heine said the idea of the Northland Hackathon started after finding out that Minnesota ranked last in the nation for computer and technology classes at the high school level.

“Big think here is that a lot of kids here who are coming, don’t have computer science classes in their high schools and so this is a really cool outlet and avenue and make something cool together”, says Luke.

Luke says he takes pride in introducing students to the computer science field through the Hackathon with his entire team of professionals. He says, “I think for me it’s less about being proud and it’s more about being appreciative that I get to be a part of a student’s journey. And for some students, I mean this might be an event that really gets them fired up and thinking hey I might want to do this as a career.”