By now you know that Mostar is our (sunny) home. Thus, every opportunity we get to support and work with youth from Mostar – we embrace wholeheartedly. When we received an email from the BEST Mostar team, we knew that we would spend two weekends in March with them on their newest project HackAtHome. And that it will be great. Looking back – we were 100% right.
Hackathon, Networking, and Educational Sessions in an Online Setup
Here’s how the BEST Mostar team envisioned their HackAtHome event:
- The first weekend was filled with educational sessions by professionals from the IT industry in BiH
- The second weekend was reserved for the hackathon, and in between coding and brainstorming the solution there was a speed dating session organized for students (mockup interviews with participants)
The topic of the hackathon? Smart solutions that could make life easier in a pandemic.
As their partners, we were actively engaged in all parts of the agenda.
Take a Look at Our Super Crew!
As continuous learners who know how much support means, a Mistral team of diligent individuals spared their weekend to share knowledge with the participants. And look at this army behind the Mistral flag!
Within the educational sessions, our Learning and Development Specialist Nađa Firdus Kreso delivered a presentation on how to write a perfect CV titled ‘Preparation Brings Victory’. Mersiha Ćeranić, our Data Analyst gave students some inputs on how to create team magic, even when working remotely in her session ‘Teamwork Makes the Dream Work’. Emir Slatina, our new team member, and HP Specialist embraced the role of Interview Coach and held mockup job interviews with students.
Jasmin Azemović, our Chief Information Security Officer was in the role of a jury member deciding on the best solutions to the hackathon challenge. In the meantime, Harun Čavčić and Irhad Babić, our senior developers were all in as mentors of teams, helping them set up the framework.
In no time, our team got into the hackathon spirit and connected with this vibrant community of young and talented students. However, not everything went as planned. A few hackathon competitors gave in to the pressure and opted out. But hey, this is real life and it is not a rare thing at hackathons – it does happen. We are sure this experience will build their confidence for the next hackathon where they will be great.
On the other side, the organizing crew worked like clockwork. The manner of communication and organization of the event was a 10/10. Having 100+ students in an online environment with a full agenda and versatile speakers is no easy task to handle. All in all, they did it masterfully.
Behind the Scenes and Screenshots
Here are some statistics behind the last two weekends:
- 10 industry speakers shared their inputs with students
- 50+ students got a chance to network
- 16 mentors were engaged night and day
- 29 teams participated in the hackathon
- 108 people competing (read: not sleeping for 48 hours)
After every line of code was written and solutions presented, the jury decided that the winner was team ‘Whoami’. (CONGRATS TO THE WINNING TEAM!)
The best three ideas got their prizes in cash, while one of the sponsors (PC Centar Mostar) awarded the 4th and 5th place brand new tech equipment.
The winning idea was a platform dedicated to the interaction between volunteers and the elderly, in the spirit of overcoming the COVID-19 barriers of physical distancing. The platform enables easy engagement between the two. The second and third places went to the ‘Code wizards’ and ‘Error 404’.
Aside from nurturing long-term relationships, and partnerships that build knowledge, and strengthen communities – there is another magical part of our partnership with BEST Mostar. Did you know that Enes Alešević, former BEST Mostar president is now a full-time Mistralovac? With their knowledge, approach to work, and persistence, we think that there are a few more future Mistralovci in that team.
Bravo Lejla, Meliha, Dalila, Elvira, Melisa, Faris, Valerija, Vedad, Dragana, Monika and Senaida!
It was an honor to be the golden sponsor of your golden team. You truly make a difference, and put the best into BEST Mostar!