Datum 2021-05-03
Artikeltyp News

"It was one of the most incredible and instructive learning experiences of my life"

This article was written before our official name change on January 1, 2022 from Mälardalen University (MDH) to Mälardalen University (MDU).

Solve a problem in 24 hours with students from different parts of the world. It became a reality for MDH's students in the International Business Management programme in April. The hackathon event "Hackoffice" was arranged by MDH and carried out with 12 partner universities from 11 countries and was an experience that gave the participants lessons for life.

"I have to admit that it was probably one of the most intense 24 hours I have experienced, but it was so worth it. I had a fantastic team and incredibly committed mentors who invested their time and energy to make Hackoffice one of the most incredible and instructive learning experiences of my life, says Guillermo Berrojo Romeyro Mascarenhas", who studies International Business Management at MDH.

A hackathon is a way to find new, creative solutions to problems while training to build a team collaboration in a short time.

"The event brings together a unique mix of students who create, pitch, and compete with their ideas", says Charlotta Edlund, who, together with Eva Maaninen-Olsson, was project manager for the project.

Prepared for the workplace of the future

The main theme for this year's hackathon was Sustainable Office and Modern Workplaces of the Future, where students could choose between three different perspectives and questions that they would answer in the areas of Personal Health and Wellbeing, Cross-Cultural Behavior Regarding Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and New Working Methods. The result was delivered in the form of an academic paper and a Pecha Kucha presentation. As a help, the students had assigned mentors who provided feedback on strengths and weaknesses before submitting the final report.

"Students develop skills in idea generation, project planning, report writing, presentation techniques, and collaborating in a multi-cultural and virtual team. Everything happens at a high pace in an international context with four different time zones. Practicing these parts is essential to prepare students for their future working life, especially if they work in an international context", says Charlotta Edlund and Eva Maaninen Olsson.

Many participating students express how valuable the event has been for them and recommend others to participate.

"It was challenging, exhausting, and amazing! Our feelings were changing from excitement to curiosity to anxiety and back again, but the layout fuelled our motivation to work and develop as students and as individuals. We were able to work with new people, exchange knowledge, get to know foreign cultures, and practice our skills in English language. Also, we had the opportunity to familiarise ourselves with a topic which is crucial to our generation and present our views and proposals about it. It is a great opportunity not only to learn but also to make new friends, says Anna Filotheidou, student from International Hellenic University", Kavala in Greece.

Find out more on the hackathon website www.primeathon.com External link.