UST launches SDG-inspired hackathon


To foster interdisciplinary collaboration among students, the University of Santo Tomas TOMASInno Center, UST’s official technology business incubator, hosted the first University-wide hackathon with the theme “Hack-a-Thom: The UST Hackathon on Sustainable Development Goals — Health, Environment and Education.”

This inaugural hackathon brought together 14 teams of 83 students from various disciplines. Transcending the boundaries of traditional academic silos, it encouraged students to collaborate, innovate and create solutions to real-world problems.

TOMASInno Center made the event inclusive and appealing to students with varied interests and skills by conducting bootcamps where professional practitioners coming from the field of engineering, business, programming and other related trades and professions gave lecture sessions.

Executive director of Climate Change Commission Sec. Robert E.A. Borje.

Secretary Robert E.A. Borje vice chairperson and executive director of Climate Change Commission, delivered a keynote message, addressing key issues and emphasizing the importance of innovation. He highlighted the challenges ranging from developing innovative solutions to societal problems to creating new technologies that could disrupt existing industries.

In first place was Team INNOvision with their project “AERLYTE”. The project aims to solve rising problems among geriatrics like health risks, reduced mobility, social isolation, and lack of motivation for exercise. This will be addressed through technology, specifically, a revolutionary exergaming app that seamlessly blends entertainment and health that enables a personalized and immersive fitness experience, fostering a new era of active aging for a healthier and happier senior community. Members include Julianne Kyle D. Abello FJ Rio Rey Bantugan Karl Dominic F. Placido, and Ydel Dominique C. Villariba.

In second place was Team Thoma5eekers with their project “Charging Point,” which aims to solve the problems brought by car-centricity by creating bike-friendly campuses and allowing the community to contribute in generating renewable energy. Mikayla Vera G. Cabildo, Kyle Christian Joshua M. Elgarico, Ronrico Miguel M. Kho, Niña Darlene S. Sebastian and Russell L. Serranillo are the team members.

In third place is Team “MATCHA” with “Project Gesto,” an app made for everyone who desires to communicate and learn using sign language. Aside from its purpose to communicate, this will also help people who are willing to learn Braille and Sign Language. The team includes Abby Joyce E. Borromeo, Johann Louise V. Castillo, Alyssa Cherrylyn S. Guinto and Lance Raphael H. Perez.

Team Synapse’s “Sewalert” was recognized as the top environment-related pitch for tackling the causes of flooding by leveraging their innovative flood sensor technology and helping to alert the appropriate authorities. Team members are Marc Angelo S. Ching, Miguel Felipe E. Lugay, Kercwin Paul F. Ocampo, Carl Diego L. Sadie and Colleen Fritzi Santiago.

Team T6’s project “KKB,” which stands for “kumain ka na ba?” aims to solve the lack of nutrition, foster healthy eating habits and embracing connectivity among college students through an app with interconnected features to assist users in locating food shops according to their preferences and constraints, providing easy nutrient-tracking through AI photography and promoting a social community that reminds each other to eat rightfully and healthily. It was recognized as the top health-related pitch.

The top education-related entry was Team Incinque’s ABARKADA, which aims to provide inclusive, accessible and quality education for all through an interactive learning platform integrated with innovative and inclusive features for children with limited hearing capacities, such as AI Learning assistant and Digital Classrooms.