what is a hackathon


You’re not alone if the word hackathon makes you think of people in hoodies drinking energy drinks and coding furiously away on secret projects. But there’s so much more to it, especially with our upcoming hackathon with McKesson! Want to go from an idea to a working proof of concept within 24 hours alongside amazing people? Um, the answer is YES!

What to expect?

  • Problem-solving
    Whether you come prepared with an idea or know of a team you want to be a part of, come ready to get those creative juices flowing. Have an idea to solve a problem better than another product? Want to make a process more efficient? A hackathon is your testing ground to do exactly this.
  • Quickfire pitches
    Have an idea you want to pitch? You’ll get 60 seconds to pitch your idea at the event. Know the secrets of giving the perfect pitch? Focus on the WHAT, WHY and HOW.
  • Teamwork
    Once you have your big idea, you’ll need to collaborate on a team that has a varied skill set to create it. The winning teams usually have a mix of engineering, tech, marketing and subject matter expertise. PLUS, we’ll have mentors available that can jump in and help or be a sounding board! 
  • Crunchtime
    This is where the energy drinks come in. A hackathon limits the time you have to finish your project and teams will typically work around the clock to perfect their final product. It’s crucial to communicate openly and operate cohesively to make your idea a reality.
  • Presentations
    You’ll show off your amazing finished idea with a demo pitch to the panel of judges, PLUS be ready for some Q&A. The panel is usually made up of founders and professionals from various industries. You’ll need to be prepared to present on not only the execution and design of your product, but your business model and customer validation.

What’s in it for you?

  • Expand your network
    Your team will be made up of people with different skills and it’s a great opportunity for cross-functional collaboration with new people. The final presentations bring everyone into the same room, so you’ll also have a chance to make connections with members of other teams.
  • Add to your professional portfolio
    At the end of the hackathon, you’ll have created a wicked product and have a new community of entrepreneurs to keep building your momentum!
  • Bragging rights
    Whether you win or not, you’ll come away with incredible stories.
  • Don’t forget to have fun & ride the waves of startup life!

Ready to jump into a hackathon?

Join Girls in Tech Phoenix + McKesson for our 3-day hackathon event August 9-11 in Tempe, AZ @ UAT. We’ll be focusing on cyber security, network, supply chain and healthcare. Registration is required, the event is FREE and all meals are included…uhhhmazing! Questions? Read our FAQs here

Don’t miss out on this opportunity, only a few spots are left, so come join the fun and register here!

Got an awesome hackathon story? Comment below or let us know on social with #GITPHX

Written by Roxanne Kirk

Roxanne Kirk is a member of the Marketing Committee for Girls in Tech Phoenix. She has experience in the HR/payroll tech space and is passionate about supporting women in STEM fields.