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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Manchester company Dyn to host first-ever Hackademy event for college students

MANCHESTER – If you’ve always wanted to be a hacker, Dyn may provide you with that opportunity.

Though the company’s first ever “Hackademy” event doesn’t really have to do with hacking, the company is inviting all college juniors with a passion for computer coding to apply for their four-day program by Friday. The academy will start mid-May. ...

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MANCHESTER – If you’ve always wanted to be a hacker, Dyn may provide you with that opportunity.

Though the company’s first ever “Hackademy” event doesn’t really have to do with hacking, the company is inviting all college juniors with a passion for computer coding to apply for their four-day program by Friday. The academy will start mid-May.

The event will merge the educational opportunities of an academy with the technical passion of a “hackathon,” an event where coders are provided with a problem set they have a set time to solve.

Rick Gallin, Dyn director of talent management, said this is the company’s first program of its kind and is geared toward educating students seeking a path in coding while exposing them to a professional career setting.

“What we’re seeing generally in the marketplace is kids are learning one thing in school,” he said, “but then they get into the workforce and some of the curriculum, some of the tools and processes they learn, are not necessarily as up to date with what we’re using in the industry.”

Gallin added that not all students looking to enter the industry realize there are other avenues to pursue besides developing an interesting mobile phone application or slick new website.

Gallin said Dyn’s CEO Jeremy Hitchcock, a Worcester Polytechnic Institute graduate who developed the company while still in school, wanted to start his business in New Hampshire because he believes the area lends itself to becoming a “tech arena.”

“(Computer technology leaders) said if you want your company to be successful, you need to go to Silicon Valley, New York City and Boston, but (Hitchcock) loved New Hampshire,” Gallin said. “He said, ‘I think the rules have changed and you can build a company anywhere.’”

Media relations manager Adam Coughlin noted that while only a couple of dozen students have applied for their Hackademy program so far, the company is looking to start the program out slowly and attract more college students in time. Coughlin said there aren’t “hundreds and hundreds” of people applying because few are pursuing degrees in systemic design.

“We’re trying to change that,” he said.

The program is open to 20 to 30 college juniors with technology majors, and the program will feature coding workshops, networking opportunities and a “mini-hackathon,” all from May 16-19 at Dyn’s Manchester headquarters.

For more information, visit: http://dyn.com/hackademy.

Samantha Allen can be reached at 594-6426 or sallen@nashua
telegraph.com. Also, follow Allen on Twitter (@Telegraph_SamA).