Rahma Ali describes her experience at Hack Harvard

Article by Rahma Ali.

My journey to Harvard University my love for technology and software and hardware has lead me such and emotionally gratifying path. It all started with the notion how can I technologically evolve and create products, I’m truly proud of that. The question was always lingering in the back my mind and through watching Ted talks and learning new programming languages. Each time my confidence grew and grew, I always wanted to be in a room full of technologically enthusiastic individuals. I had the ambition to end up in Harvard University so that’s how I came across a Hackthon. I was filled with immense joy. Allow me to explain how the time was set up.

Imagine three days of chocolate and caffeine, also the chocolate was infused with caffeine. Imagine students with the wide array of technological skills and backgrounds from all around the world, computing and collaborating with technology in mind. Imagine computer science mentors always there and they’re extending helpful technological hand. Imagine sponsors such as Microsoft, Facebook, Google and local Boston startup companies just beaming to see your technological innovation. Imagine no more, that was my reality for the last three days at Harvard University, from Friday to Saturday and Sunday.

To give you more scoop of the event, they had many exciting opportunities to network with recruiters from you to the companies that were sponsoring. For example, Facebook had technical interview preps where you actually got to see firsthand how to prepare for technical interview for Facebook with exciting prizes. You never really knew where the prizes are coming from. Some of the competition is that where they included the Mass Clean Energy Center will sponsor the best clean transportation hack, or the project that will help replace or reduce the use of fossil fuels in the transportation sector. There are so many lessons that were impactful as I will truly never forget them after attending the Hackathon.

When it comes to technology and you’re passionate about learning and growing and the technological field, the important lesson that is very imperative is always explore your options and practice until you feel confident in that specific skill.

Continue having conversations with students from all around the world and getting to know them and asking them questions about how they got to Harvard University and what compelled them to apply was so inspiring everyone at Harvard University. Harvard was truly inclusive, supportive and very kind from the rush of the opening ceremony with the sponsor is got a chance introduce themselves and share why they are at Harvard University to the closing ceremony when the days commenced.

The whole experience was truly exhilarating! I would like to extend some words to aspiring technologies that are in universities that no matter your nature, if you are passionate about technology and love creating products that you are proud of, always look into yourself and make sure you set a tribe of people that truly support you and uplift to you in every single way outside the academia gateways because that one idea that you might think insignificant can be the next powerful innovation tool for our society.

Furthermore, my journey to Harvard University is definitely an experience! I cannot forget from all the wonderful sponsors such as Amazon, Shell Tech Works, Capital One, etc, as well as the Harvard University staff and organizers that kept the momentum high. I was more than elated to be representing McMaster University in Canada at Hack Harvard.2018!