Empowering the Future: SheHacks 2024 Tackles Finance and Technology

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Empowering the Future: SheHacks 2024 Tackles Finance and Technology

Samaira, Grade 11, Head of SheHacks, GiT
22 April 2024

SheHacks 2024 represents the sixth year of this unique girls and non-binary hackathon hosted by Girls in Tech. It is a weekend-long event where girls apply their interests in technology and coding to solve their chosen problem around a central theme.

Since 2019, our participants have explored issues in Empowerment, Sustainability, Communication, Education and Healthcare. In light of the pandemic, a key tool that helped small businesses stay afloat was Financial apps, and the equity for accessing these financial apps. Moreover, a gap we thought existed in current education systems was the lack of education regarding finance, and its vitality in our world today. This is why we chose Finance as the SheHacks 2024 theme.

This year, we were very fortunate to host the hackathon in person, outside of school, at the Microsoft Office in Singapore, similar to the very first SheHacks in 2019. We had great support from our sponsor, Microsoft, who were generous enough to offer their office space, as well as provide volunteer mentors and judges.

In addition to Microsoft, we also had support from PaloAlto Networks, who ran a successful cyber security workshop, along with Dell, which sponsored us over $2000 in gifts for winning participants and Hack Club, who gave us a generous donation that helped sponsor our merchandise for the event.

The success of the weekend consisted of three key elements:

  • a safe and secure place to host;
  • guiding industry professionals to judge and mentor participants; and
  • of course a good number of participants!

We overcame many obstacles to host the event in person – from coordinating with Microsoft authorities regarding restrictions in hosting and catering for participants at a single venue to coordinating with our mentors and judges in person and virtually. Our hard work over the past five months culminated in a widely successful event.

One of the more difficult tasks was connecting with the right industry professionals. However, through perseverance, we were able to get an illustrious lineup of mentors, judges and speakers from leading companies including Microsoft, Mastercard, JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Palo Alto Networks. They provided valuable insights into the applications and feasibility of our participants' ideas. Given their vast experience in the technological field, our participants got the most out of this experience! We hosted 50 super enthusiastic participants in SheHacks 2024. These 50 were split into 13 teams across a U14 and U18 category. The room was bustling with excitement and energy from the get-go. Some even stayed late to continue working on their projects. Throughout the weekend, participants were able to interact with one another, learn something new, and make new friends.

Hosting this successful in-person hackathon where participants felt engaged and inspired has given us, the GIT team, a sense of achievement and we are indeed proud to be part of SheHacks 2024. We hope that SheHacks can instil confidence in those who want to pursue their interest in technology, be it coding or innovation, as well as break down the existing gender imbalance in the field of technology. To all the She-Hackers and aspirational She-Hackers out there, we hope that this platform allows you to challenge yourself and solve problems using technology.

To join us, you can attend a Girls in Tech meeting on Tuesdays, 12.45pm, or we would love to see you attend SheHacks 2025!

Contact us:

Email: girlsintechuwc@gmail.com
Instagram: @girlsintechuwc
Website: www.shehacks.weebly.com