Looking for an opportunity to challenge yourself and show off your skills? Submit your Hackster project to one of our hardware contests! In addition to the chance to win all exciting prizes, participating in contests are a great way to try new things and learn something in the process.
Competing against others helps push your creative spirit and get feedback about your hard work. The contest judges carefully review your projects and sometimes getting their attention can lead to even greater opportunities beyond the competition.
In this story we learn about one of our members, Paul Trebilcox-Ruiz, and his experience at the US-China Young Maker Challenge contest and how it played a part in him getting a great new job!
The Young Maker Challenge was the first hardware contest that Trebilcox-Ruiz had ever participated in. Because the contest is open-ended and allows for any variety of hardware and software, he found that it offered the perfect opportunity to join with some of the work he had already done.
Just prior to the contest, Trebilcox-Ruiz had been learning to develop with microcontrollers. He was creating the basic types of projects most of us start with such as the ephemeral Arduino blink sketch! Being familiar with Android mobile development, he used this contest to continue to develop his skills with the Android Things platform.
“I already had a few projects in mind that I wanted to build, so when I saw the contest, I figured why not make one of them and submit it?”
Trebilcox-Ruiz's winning project was a Motion Activate Wildlife Camera that aimed to reduce traffic accidents with animals crossing over freeways.
Setting a goal for yourself when joining a contest is a great way to present your work, as it creates an interesting story for the judges. Having a perspective similar to Trebilcox-Ruiz's, that it can be a valuable learning experience regardless of the outcome, is a great state of mind to be in to produce your best work!
The US-China Young Maker Challenge is a unique contest as it is broken up into sections, the semi-finals on Hackster and the finals which are held in China. This year and last the event has had to be virtual but still has amazing prizes available! If you are looking to broaden your horizon / international experience this is a great place to start.
“Placing in the [top 10 finalists for the] Young Maker Challenge was a moral boost that got me even more involved with electronics once I saw I could actually make something worthwhile.”
Energized by the experience in the contest, Trebilcox-Ruiz continued to learn new development platforms like AIY kits, TensorFlow boards and Android Things. The projects he posted on Hackster laid the groundwork for the experience that eventually landed him a job with Google developer relations. It can’t be promised to everyone but there is proof that entering a Hackster contest can have a real positive impact on your life!
“The China-US Young Maker Challenge had a significant impact on my career and my appreciation for other parts of the world, and I think it’s an amazing opportunity for everyone who participates.”
Challenge yourself today and see where your creativity will take you!
Submit your project to the 2021 US-China Young Maker Challenge! Open to U.S. students ages 18 to 40 (Current enrollment not required). No restrictions on hardware or software! Any project that attempts to solve a problem faced by people and society qualifies for this contest!