NewsThe 8th Annual BLACK ENTERPRISE Smart Hackathon Returns

The 8th Annual BLACK ENTERPRISE Smart Hackathon Returns

The annual BE Smart Hackathon is gearing up for its eighth year! Let the competition begin.

The annual BE Smart Hackathon is gearing up for its eighth year! Let the competition begin.

Earl “Butch” Graves Jr., BLACK ENTERPRISE President and CEO, has witnessed the impact of the ever-evolving technology industry. “The demand for skilled professionals is higher than ever, and BE recognizes the importance of nurturing the talent that already exists within HBCUs,” he stated in a press release. 

He added: “This event, in partnership with American Airlines, is a testament to our unwavering commitment to fostering diversity in the tech industry and ensuring that HBCU students have access to the opportunities and mentorship they need to excelin their careers.

Since its inception, the BE Smart Hackathon has enabled students from renowned HBCUs to forge lasting connections, access mentorship opportunities, and enrich their résumés with meaningful experiences. The 24-Hour hack will feature 36 participating teams for a friendly competition. Thanks to American Airlines, each team will have access to technical staff for mentoring and guidance in preparing and delivering their presentations to the judging panel.

Last October, a three-member team from Atlanta-based Morehouse College took home the win at the 7th Annual BE Smart Hackathon, representing the “best of the best” in tech among HBCUs across the country. Juniors Kevin Drew, Trent Gaylord and Elijah Truitt were later flown to Chicago to claim the remainder of their first-place prize. This trip presented an unique opportunity for the trio to showcase their winning concept to the Hackathon’s presenting sponsor, Hyatt, at its corporate headquarters in Chicago to Chief Information Officer Eben Hewitt.

“American Airlines is proud to support the BE Smart Hackathon and play a role in fostering the next generation of tech leaders,” said Cedric Rockamore, Chief Diversity Officer at American Airlines. “We believe in the talent and innovation that these students bring to the table, and we’re excited to provide mentorship and career opportunities. This event is a testament to the power of diversity in driving technological advancement and we’re honored to be a part of it.”

The participating schools include:

Alabama Agricultural & Mechanical University·Alabama State University·Benedict College·Bethune-Cookman University·Dillard University·Edward Waters University·Fisk University·Florida A&M University·Florida Memorial University·Grambling State University·Howard University·Jackson State University·Johnson C. Smith University·Morehouse College·Morgan State University

Source: Black Enterprise

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