Lighting the Torch

April 02 - 03, 2016
Bergen County Academies, Hackensack NJ

All beginners are welcome.

hackBCA III is the third annual hackathon hosted at the Bergen County Academies high school in Hackensack, New Jersey. Created and planned solely by students, hackBCA is open to all high school students who are interested in exploring computer science. Prior programming experience is not needed: hackBCA is an open floor to anyone who wants to create.


Are you a beginner or in need of guidance? Paths will lead the way! At the beginning of hackBCA, you will be able to choose a path. Within each path, you will be able to attend workshops, group sessions, and be able to win prizes related to your path. More information about Paths will be provided at the event.

Scholarship Program

Our scholarship program brings high schoolers from local underserved communities to the hackathon, covering any travel costs, and provides them with a free laptop. By doing this, we hope to give these students the power to make their ideas a reality. If you’re interested in bringing this program to your school, contact us at [email protected].

When and Where


April 02 (1:30 PM) - April 03 (4:00 PM), 2016.


Bergen County Academies, in Hackensack, NJ.

(The NJTransit 175 Bus from NYC GW Bridge Bus Terminal stops right in front of BCA.)


What is a hackathon?

A hackathon is an overnight coding event in which teams spend the weekend “hacking” together to create an awesome project like a game, website, or app! Hackathons are a great way to learn more about coding, meet new people, and build something cool. Check out Dave Fontenot's post on "What is a hackathon?" to learn more!

What if I don't know how to code?

Then you’ve come to the right place! hackBCA is open to students of all levels and beginners are encouraged to come. Hackathons provide an awesome opportunity to dive into programming. At hackBCA, workshops and mentors will help you get started with the basics of programming and you’ll leave our hackathon having learned a lot.

What should I bring?

You should bring your laptop or desktop, school ID, phone, charging cables, and any hardware you plan on using. Power strips, personal hygiene products, and an extra set of clothes are also recommended. Mainly, bring your awesome self!

How much does this event cost?

It’s free! And food will be provided free of cost. We will consider sending a bus to your area with this form. Unfortunately, we will not be reimbursing any other travel arrangements for this year's event.

Who can attend?

Any student in high school can attend! You do not have to attend BCA or be from the US. If you need help convincing your parents, contact us at [email protected].

How do teams work?

You can work on a project individually or with a team. You can come as a team, or form a team at the event. For more information on teams, check out our rules.

Can I start my hack before the event?

Nope! Please don’t start your hack until after the kickoff ceremony if you plan to submit it for judging.

How and when do I submit my hack?

You must submit your hack by 11:30 AM on Sunday, but you can still work on them after 11:30 AM. We will be sending out the details of where to submit your hack on Sunday.

Have another question? Ask us at [email protected]!


Saturday, April 02

01:30 PM - Registration Begins @ Auditorium Foyer
03:00 PM - Opening Ceremony Begins @ Auditorium
04:15 PM - Opening Ceremony Ends, Hacking Begins @ Gym, Lower Cafeteria, Commons
05:30 PM - Chris Wanstrath Q & A @ Upper Cafeteria
06:30 PM - Dinner @ Upper Cafeteria
09:30 PM - Cup Stacking @ Lower Cafeteria
11:00 PM - Snack @ Upper Cafeteria
11:00 PM - Milk n' Cookies Powered by Rough Draft Ventures @ Upper Cafeteria

Sunday, April 03

12:45 AM - Pizza @ Upper Cafeteria
02:00 AM - SSB Melee Tourney @ Lower Cafeteria
02:00 AM - Mafia @ Room 134
03:00 AM - Cypher @ Lower Cafeteria
03:00 AM - Dippin' Dots @ Upper Cafeteria
04:00 AM - DDR @ Room 134
05:00 AM - Rock Band @ Room 134
07:30 AM - Breakfast @ Upper Cafeteria
11:30 AM - Lunch @ Upper Cafeteria
12:00 PM - Hacks Must be Submitted @ hackbca3.devpost.com
01:00 PM - Demos Begin @ Upper Cafeteria
03:00 PM - Demos End, Closing Ceremony Begins @ Auditorium
04:00 PM - Hackathon Ends

Special Guests

Josh Bancroft
Keynote Speaker

Developer Relations @ Intel

Chris Wanstrath
Top Speaker

Cofounder & CEO of Github

Tom Lehman

Cofounder & CEO of Genius

Jeremy Rossman

Cofounder of MakeSchool

Cindy Gallop

Founder & CEO of If We Ran the World

Tea Ho

Product Designer @ DonorsChoose.org

Kate Machtiger

Senior Analyst @ Luminary Labs


Cohosted By:

In Partnership with:

Interested in sponsoring? Talk to us at [email protected]!