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Eduvos celebrates annual Hack Jam event

The final round of the Eduvos Hack Jam took place in the first week of December. The competition, hosted by the Eduvos Employability Centre, is open to all Eduvos students and aims to foster innovative thinking, problem-solving and collaboration amongst students. Participating students must present innovative ideas that solve real-world problems.
Eduvos celebrates annual Hack Jam event

The Hack Jam gives students the chance to connect with industry professionals as the judging panel consists of internal Eduvos members along with external industry professionals – three of whom are also Eduvos alumni. They included Jason Petrie from the Institute of Advance Cyber Defense (IACD), Kyle Hully from Thoughtware, Riaan Freyer from DevSavvy, Tyrom Aricum from Jumping Fox Software and Stephan Du Plooy from SDP Software Solutions.

Cheryl Smith, head of Student Support and Student Affairs says: “Hack Jam inspires Eduvos students to find solutions to challenges identified by industry and the world of work. The Hack Jam provides a platform for students to network with professionals in their field, to showcase their skills and solve real-world problems.”

The competition took place over three rounds. Eight groups made it to the final where they had to present a prototype of their project to the judges.

Kyle Hulley, from Thoughtware, is an Eduvos alum and served as one of this year’s judges, said that competitions like these foster growth in students: “Eduvos is a big feeder of staff for us, and our sister companies, and we believe in the mission Eduvos has. We believe competitions like this are a great way for students to get more exposed to the industry. The talent is so great to see and it's amazing how it keeps growing year after year Eduvos and the students should be proud of what they have created.”

Transport Security and Theft Prevention from the Eduvos Pretoria campus walked away as the winners of Hack Jam 2022. The four members, Ronald Storr Mommsen, Gustav Stierlin, Markku Ebersohn and Gustav Steynberg, innovated a system that provides a factor of security that can be implemented into any car make or model. The four Vossies are all second year Bachelor of Science in Information Technology students.
Ronald Mommsen says they were inspired by their own problems as well as broader South Africa: “Two members of the team drive older model cars that have no security system at all. So, we thought of the idea to make a device to install into these older model cars, but to also make it compatible with every car model out there.”

Gustav Stierlin says: “We realised that a lot of South Africans have the same problem as us, so we developed a solution.”

The winning team walked away with vouchers courtesy of Eduvos, IACD Bursaries for an iOS App development programme or a Cyber Defense course to the value of R49,950, R2,000 per member from SA Personnel, and a DevSavvy Core Skills Course to the value of R70,000.

Red Sqware, an equity crowdfunding website, from the Eduvos Nelson Mandela Bay campus were runners-up while ScholarSpace, a student-based employment hub application, from the Bedfordview campus came third.

“We were stressed out, the other teams had amazing ideas and implementations,” says Stierlin, “but when we found out we won, all of us were ecstatic. This gave us a confidence boost and made me realise if you work hard enough you can achieve anything that you want.”

Gustav Steynberg says the Hack Jam has opened new possibilities for them: “I'm truly ecstatic about winning the course bursaries, especially the DevSavvy bootcamp which I plan on attending when I have a possible internship/job in scope a few weeks after I complete the courses. I believe this has opened a lot of doors for me and feel like this is the next big step in achieving my career and financial goals.”

For media enquiries contact moc.sovude@grebdv.arak or moc.sovude@eciffosserp.

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