When I was a kid, I loooooooooooooved the chemistry lab. It was fun to see the chemicals mix and coalesce into an entirely new brand, cool product. I am sure that all kids loved to see that too.
So we attempted our own chemistry experiment. We brought together both of our initiatives: the LearnUp and the Hackathon. The LearnUp was geared specifically to help the participants to hack at the Applift Datathon. The hack took place on the weekend of November 28th and 29th.
We didn’t know how this would pan out. Whether it would help participants of the hackathon, or whether it would increase attendance. No idea. Well, to be fair, we thought that it would increase attendance. But of course, this was new territory for us.
Reactant A: The LearnUp
I don’t have time in this brief post to get into details about how the LearnUp worked out. Pratik Saurav has written an excellent recap of what happened at the LearnUp. (You can read all about it here.). But I should mention that we had 75 attendees eager to scope out Applift. As well as get a few hacking tips.
Understandably, we were quite happy with the turnout. But again, we still didn’t know what to expect, or what impact this LearnUp would have on the upcoming datathon.
Reactant B: The Datathon
To describe the events of the Datathon would take me too far afield here. I will refer you to Pratik’s blog post outlining the details. Suffice it to say that we had 123 attendees. This was an astounding turnout considering the niche domain. After all, to get 123 data enthusiasts is no small feat.
So did the LearnUp help in this turnout? I think so, and let me tell you why. As I generally do, I went to the hackathon and talked to the participants. I asked them about the LearnUp and whether it helped them. And it sure did. Several participants said they would probably not have attended if not for the LearnUp. Others said that the LearnUp helped focus their ideas. And several attendees said that the LearnUp helped to form their teams for the hack ahead. In other words, it was a great networking opportunity!
A + B -> (Catalyst::Venturesity) -> Success!
The experiment was a success. Everyone loved the idea. And the participants felt that we should do the same for other hackathons. A LearnUp followed by a hackathon is a great working formula! Not only in terms of numbers, but in terms of quality candidates, and happy ones too. J
Want to be a part of this experiment? Take part in our next hackathon, oh sorry, our next LearnUp + Hackathon and get ahead. Check out our webpage for details.