The Hackathon of the University of Corsica more than a student competition

Fifty attendees. Sixteen teams. Four challenges and 36 hours to complete them. Computer coding marathon orchestrated by the University of Corsica, in Corte, the Hackathon goes beyond the simple student event. Because framed and judged by pros, it can also open doors

It’s 4 p.m. and the corridors of the Edmond Simeoni building are eerily quiet. The excitement of the past two days – from Wednesday 14 to Friday 16 December – is falling. It’s the last straight line. The first teams present their project to the jury, the others refine the final details.

Since Wednesday afternoon, they haven’t slept much, even growing at night until 2 am. To put the odds on their side and be sure to finish on time.

In all, there were about fifty of them, divided into sixteen teams engaged in a computer coding marathon created by their sector and the University Foundation five years ago.

“The Hackathon was designed by the IT sectorexplains Paul-Antoine Bisgambiglia, Director of Studies. He is a child of the Innovation Challenge.” The other digital marathon – this time focused on innovation – mixes sectors and notably includes computer science students, “recruited” mainly for their technical skills. Less for their creativity. Hence their desire to finally set up their own event.

“The principlecontinues Paul-Antoine Bisgambiglia, is that we place our students in a semi-professional setting, at the heart of which they must provide a functional technical solution to a problem, all in 36 hours.”

To put in your CV

Beyond the playful aspect, what the teacher also sees is the possibility of reinforcing skills “that can be developed outside of theoretical courses”. Communication and management for example. “They work in teams of three or four people, and the levels are mixed, from Bac +3 to Bac +5. a role of supervision, of manager.”

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The challenge is also to create a link. First between students of different ages and levels. But looking further, with other generations and above all, with the environment that will be the one in which they will soon work: “The four partners who finance the Hackathon each launch a challenge (read at the bottom of the article, editor’s note). During the competition, they all come with two, three or four coaches who accompany and support the teams. This is the first circle of a future network.”

And this is all the more true when these coaches are themselves former students of the University of Corsica. Like Christophe Nasica who, at the end of his studies, was hired by GoodBarber, one of the four partners. After participating in the first three editions of the Hackathon, he returned this year as a coach: “The three days went very wellhe assures. The students are open, they ask questions, they ask for help. I find them more liberated than we were, more at ease. They have time pressure, but they handle it pretty well.” As for the ideas produced, Christophe Nasica believes that there is everything: “Some go to the basics, focus on what is mandatory, others have more ideas or do more functional things.”

But everyone understood that what was at stake went beyond a simple competition between students. “In Masters 2says Paul-Antoine Bisgambiglia, some are working on writing their resumes and ‘winning the Hackathon’ is now something they are promoting.” Because the coaches present can turn into headhunters and spot the right profiles. Because also, the juries are not teachers, but bosses, and future potential recruiters. Additional credibility. And a springboard to seize.

Last night, at the end of the presentations of the various projects and the deliberations of the judges, four teams were crowned (see box). Each student composing them won a voucher for €250 to spend at Fnac. In addition to a new line, promising, to add to his CV.

Sébastien Simoni: “For five years they have had better presentation skills”

The founder of GoodBarber is a regular at such events at the University. And a regular at the Hackathon, which he has been following since its first edition. “This yearhe explains, we wanted to focus on artificial intelligence. We asked candidates to try generating content on an app, such as articles or photos, from a few elements, and using artificial intelligence.”

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With his hindsight on the event, Sébastien Simoni finds qualities in this 2022 edition: “I am rather very satisfied with the proposals that have been made. The students are comfortable with cutting-edge questions.” He also makes an observation on the evolution of the generations: “For five years, I have found that they have better presentation skills. I am also thinking of the Innovation Challenge. They have better mastered their communication, which is a bit in the zeitgeist.”

Challenges

For JellySmack, a movie recommendation algorithm.

For Oscaro Power, the development of an educational application on solar electricity.

For GoodBarber, a web interface for automatic content generation using artificial intelligence.

For EDF, a mobile and/or Web app that will simulate a game on electric mobility.

Winners

JellySmack Challenge: Johanna Fericean, Nicolas Ottavi, Romain Balzano, Anthony Marchiselli

Oscaro Power Challenge: Dan Bizwa, Idricealy Mourtadhoi, Thomas Garau.

GoodBarber Challenge: Jean-Eric Mommjea, Jean Bertrand, Mathieu Picart, Lucas Leculier.

EDF Challenge: Salifou Mahaman, Mamadou Diakhaby, Paul Mariani, Axel Brunel.

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The Hackathon of the University of Corsica more than a student competition


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