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Jellified Pandas creates the winning solution at “Hack My City” Hackathon

on October 11, 2022 / by Nikki Cabus ,

Read Time 4 Minutes

Civic hacking is when individuals find creative solutions for issues relating to the duties or activities of people in relation to their town, city, or local area. This year’s Tech Hub Hackathon themed “Hack My City” allowed attendees to do just that.

FAU’s College of Engineering and Computer Science East Building

South Florida continues to be recognized as one of the country’s top growing technology hubs and has become a destination for tech and innovation. As more technologists flock to our region, South Florida Tech Hub recognizes the important role that the individual people who live in our communities play in developing a thriving ecosystem for all.

The hackathon was presented by Office DepotFlorida Power & Light (FPL), Varis and Florida Atlantic University. Guest speakers included Michael Fowler, VP of IT @ Florida Power & Light (FPL) and Co-Chair at South Florida Tech Hub, Andrew Parry, VP of Application Development & Support at Office Depot and Tech Hub Board Member, and Stella Batalama, Dean at FAU’s College of Engineering & Computer Science.

The hackathon took place in the beautiful Florida Atlantic University’s College of Engineering and Computer Science building east enabling developers, designers, project managers, and entrepreneurs to come together and develop tech for their local communities.

Mayor Josh Levy, City of Hollywood

This year’s “City Partner” was the City of Hollywood. The Mayor of the City of Hollywood, Josh Levy, had a special message for the hackers this year saying, “Events like this hackathon highlight the important role that technology plays each and every day in our lives and our community and there’s no better place or time to be here in South Florida.” He continued, “You know the tech scene here in South Florida is on fire!”

Janelle Richards, Economic Development Marketing Coordinator, was also in attendance helping educate the attendees on opportunity’s to connect with the City and how they are “leaning into tech.” The City’s IT Director, Raheem Seecharan, was also a part of the judges panel.

Other judges included, Kiran Singh, Data Analytics & Data Science Leader at NextEra Energy Resources, Jonathan Sanchez, Software Engineer at City Furniture at CITY Furniture, Tahl Milburn, Technologist, Startup Mentor, and Investor with Seedfunders and New World Angels, and Martha Rios, BCEx Entrepreneurship Specialist atBroward College. Additional sponsors included City of Hollywood, Semantix, and Helpfull.

1ST PLACE, $2,500 PRIZE: Jellified Pandas

  • Solution: The Gradebook – A tool that integrates with Canvas/Blackboard and display which students are struggling with the material easing the load off the teacher’s plate and making it easier to provide additional resources to students who need them.
  • Team Members: Pinaki Upadhyay, Mahri Almazova, Shirley Xu, Joshua Walsworth, Bryan Cook
  • See Presentation | See Github

2ND PLACE, $1,500 PRIZE: Curly Braces

  • Solution: CITYFI – An app solving the communication gap between the community and local government by allowing citizens to report hazards using geotagging and allowing the city to communicate feedback on the the reported issues directly. 
  • Team Members: Ashley Clayden Moss, Kevin Pereira, Riley Coussens, Lia Moua, Ivan Duran, Joseph Rivera
  • See Presentation | See Github

3RD PLACE, $1,000 PRIZE: Player 5

  • Solution: Pet Watch – An app to helping humans to find their furry family members. Users can post if their pet goes missing if they find a missing pet. The app uses location to connect pets with their owners. 
  • Team Members: Lucas Mattos, Marita Perez, David Russell, Paul Russell, Praveen Yalamanchi
  • See Presentation | See Github


The winning team consisted of five FAU students which included three women — and we love that!

During their presentation, they were asked by the judges about their teamwork and each of them spoke highly of their collaboration. Pinaki also promoted developer health by highlighting their team 30 minute walks which helped each of them keep sane and mentally charged. The room applauded.


Jellified Pandas creates the winning solution at “Hack My City” Hackathon