UW Local Hack Day on December 2nd from 9 AM to 10 PM at St. Paul's Greenhouse. All university students are welcomed to join us! UW Local Hack Day's projects will be tackling social issues such as mental health, the education system, sustainability on campus, and more! The tracks are designed to hackers thinking about how they can make a difference in their community. 

We highly encourage donations through GoFundMe with a minimum of $5 for food and accommodations, but anything you can give is greatly appreciated! Volunteer here if you want to get involved and support our event. Register here to be a speaker, mentor, and a judge. 



What is UW Local Hack Day?

It is a 12-hour long hack day to bring the local UW hacker community to build cool projects and collaborate with fellow peers.

Who is allowed to come?

University students can participate. We also invite everyone to volunteer, mentor, judge, speak, perform, etc. at our event.

Are there ID or minimum age requirements to enter the event?

Yes, 18+ years. This is due to the Photo Release Forms and Privacy Policy Terms & Conditions.

Do I need programming experience to participate?

Nope! We encourage all those in university to come join us for this awesome event!

Do we need a team before we attend?

Nope. If you have a team, great! If not, then we may hold team building and mingling activities to get to know the other hackers. Don’t be afraid to get out of your comfort zone and form a team of different people!

Will there be food? I heard there would be food.

We know hackathons and hack days are known for their food, but at this moment in time, we cannot afford to accommodate everyone full meals throughout the hack day.

How do I get there? I’m lost!

Calm down. We got you. Once our location is released, we will provide directions for you to follow. Or, use Google Maps, Transit, EasyGO, or other map applications. If you are really directionally challenged, we can discuss your options—just email us at uwlocalhackday@gmail.com.

What are my transportation/parking options for getting to and from the event?

Once we release the location, you must find your own transportation. We cannot provide any reimbursements for travel. We're sorry for the inconvenience.

What can I bring to the event?

  • Snacks or money (because we cannot feed you full meals)
  • Laptop, monitor, phone, power strips/extensions cords, adapters, mice, charger(s), and other technologies needed for your project
  • Warm clothes for those winter day (and night)
  • Your thinking caps!

I want to voice my opinion, but I don’t know where to go…

We want to hear from you and how to make your experience in UW LHD fun. So, we created a form for this very purpose: http://bit.ly/UWLHDideas.

What are the categories that we can hack?

This is tentative—check your inboxes for the confirmed categories:

  1. Sustainability
  2. Diversity in the Industry
  3. Mental Health
  4. EdTech
  5. And other social impact categories

We want to spread awareness about issues concerning everyone on campus. What else do you think we should do, tell us! http://bit.ly/UWLHDideas

Can I start working on my hack before the event?

No. In the interest of fairness, students should not be working on their projects before UW LHD begins and we do not allow participants to work on pre-existing projects. However, you can familiarize yourself with all the tools and technologies you intend to use beforehand! You can also practice here: https://challenges.mlh.io/c/blackrock.

What’s going to happen there? I’ve never been to one.

  • We will hold workshops
  • We will have networking and mentoring activities
  • We will serve some light snacks
  • We will be giving out prizes
  • We will have team building activities to help you get to know other fellow hackers
  • We will be giving away secret swag (oh la la!)
  • And stay tuned for the rest!

How will we be judged?

A panel of some local names in tech will evaluate hacks based on creativity, technical difficulty, design, and usefulness. The top teams/individuals’ overall projects will demo what they have built during our closing ceremonies. New judges will be announced on a rolling basis on here, email, Twitter, and Facebook, so stay tuned!


Contact us here:

Twitter: @UWLHD

Facebook: @UWLHD

Hackathon Sponsors


Best Hack Overall

Best Design

Best Concept

Best Tech

Best Demos (5)

If you're comfortable with demoing your project in front of the participants, we encourage you to show everyone your hard work!

Devpost Achievements

Submitting to this hackathon could earn you:


  • Teams: 1-4
  • Ages: 17+
  • Canadian University Students
  • Must check in during registration and be present at the demos




Aleem Dhanji

Aleem Dhanji

Will Nippard

Will Nippard

Amir Alinaghian

Amir Alinaghian
Global Business Brigades UW

Jordan Jocius

Jordan Jocius
Founder, Startup Waterloo

Judging Criteria

  • Innovativeness/Creativity
    Was the idea unique, or a different take on an existing/similar app? What was added to the app that made it special or more useful? Was the idea behind the app ambitious? Creative? How well did the app execute upon the theme/category chosen?
  • Technical Difficulty of Demo
    What techniques was used to create the app? What sources, languages, APIs, and technologies were used? What was each featured
  • Impact
    Who does it affect? Who are the main stakeholders? Does the impact reach to all the stakeholders you are targeting? How much does the project affect the Waterloo community?
  • Relevance to Social Impact
    Best Mental Health Hack Best Sustainable Hack Best Education Hack Best Diversity Hack
  • User Interface / User Experience
    Does the UI of the app look professional/fun, or is it sloppy? Is the app easy to use? Does the workflow of the app make sense; is it intuitive?
  • Overall Quality
    Does the app work completely from start to finish? How many and how severe were any bugs encountered? Was anything in the app that wasn’t fully implemented? Did the team scope their app’s features well given the time frame of the Hackathon?
  • Quality of Pitch/App Impact
    Does the app seem like something people would want to buy and use outside of the Hackathon? Was the team able to explain their idea and what the app actually did?

Questions? Email the hackathon manager

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