Home » Crowdfunding » Los Angeles High School Student Launches a Covid-19 Hackathon – A 24-Hour Programming Competition Where Middle School Students Code Solutions to Problems Pertaining to The COVID Crisis

Ariana’s goal is to encourage students to use their passion for coding to devise innovative solutions to benefit their community. 

Los Angeles, California, June 9, 2020, With COVID-19 affecting summer vacations and summer schools, many students spend their summer quarantined at home. One high school student takes distance learning to a new level. Ariana Pineda, a high school junior at Harvard Westlake, organized a COVID-19 hackathon for middle school students around the globe. With her internship cancelled and summer school questionable, Ariana makes the most of her summer by organizing hackathons for other students eager for challenges. Her COVID-19 hackathon is geared towards students coding programs to help solve problems caused by the COVID Pandemic. She recruited over 60 middle school students globally, 7 international judges, and raised over $1,700 in funding for the contest prizes.

Ariana identified with the challenge of collaborating on projects while quarantined. “The pandemic is transforming the way we learn, communicate, and interact with each other,” she stated. “I wanted to use my free time as an opportunity to help those in a similar situation.” She created a platform for the youth to use their talents to create something meaningful to them and their community – a 24-hour hackathon.

On Sunday, June 7th, 2020, the hackathon ended with Edenwood Middle School students Mihir and Dhir Kachroo placing first in the event and winning a set of Apple Airpods. They developed a web application to bias-check news articles about COVID. The 2nd place winner, Adi Jain from Elenor Murray Fallon Middle School created a website that can calculate a person’s risk of contracting the virus based on location and crowd-sourced data.

Ariana plans to organize more hackathons during her summer break and hopes to continue to challenge youths to use their creativity and passion for STEM during their period of social distancing and remote learning. “Hackathons are a great way to collaborate with others as they require resourcefulness and teamwork to develop an innovative program.” Ariana asserts, “You cannot stop students from learning and collaborating. They want to be able to show their talents and channel their imagination to help out their community.”

Arian’s GoFundMe Campaign gives everyone a chance to get involved and be part of the process to neutralize this pandemic. This is a “Feel Good” project where all those who get involved receive a tremendous boost to their moral and feelings of community involvement.

For more information about her campaign, visit: https://www.gofundme.com/f/innovateen-hackathon

Ariana Pineda
Attn: Media Relations
Los Angeles, California