TechBuffalo and UB Blackstone Launchpad are hosting “Innovate Our Ecosystem,” a 72-hour Hackathon challenging UB student teams to develop technical solutions to accelerate the growth of our regions’ tech and start-up landscape.

Hack Choices: 

  • "Tech for Community Engagement" Design a tech solution for boosting community involvement and shaping Buffalo's tech and start-up scene through interactive apps, gamification, AR experiences, etc. 

  • "Tech for Community Connection" Craft a platform linking students, pros, tech firms, and schools, driving skill growth, mentorship, and networking in Buffalo's tech and start-up landscape. 

  • "Tech for Community Amplification" Devise a tech solution showcasing how AI, IoT, blockchain, or other technologies can supercharge Buffalo's tech and startup sectors, drawing job seekers and tech experts to Western NY. 

Things to consider: 

  • Do some research on what Buffalo’s tech and startup scene currently looks like. Ask your mentors! They are currently working in these industries! 


Hackathon Schedule:

Friday, September 15 

Location: Student Union Auditorium and Atrium 

11:00 – 11:30 | Speaker, John Hill - TechStars 

11:30 – 12:00 | Hackathon Intro Presentation 

12:00 – 12:30 | Team Selection 

12:30 | Hackathon Begins 

12:30 – 1:30 | Working Lunch 

12:30 – 6:30 | Hacking, Mentors Available 

5:30 – 6:30 | Working Dinner 

After 6:30 | Continue working in library, student union, etc. 


Saturday, September 16 

Location: Remote 

All Day | Independent Team Work 

11:00 – 5:00pm | Mentors Available via Zoom 


Sunday, September 17 

Location: Remote 

All Day | Independent Team Work 

10:00 – 1:00pm | Mentors Available via Zoom 


Monday, September 18 

Location: Student Union 235 

12:30 | All projects submitted to Devpost 

1:00 – 2:30 | Teams final prep, pitch practice with a TechBuffalo or Blackstone rep, snacks available  

2:00 – 2:30 | Judges pre-meeting 

2:30 – 4:00 | Judging, (Groups of 2-3 judges meet with up to 7-10 groups – judges preassigned teams) 

4:00 – 4:45 | Deliberations 

4:45 – 5:15 | Awards Ceremony



You are required to develop and showcase in your pitch: 

  • Figma or visual mockup/prototype of your solution to demonstrate the basic functionality and user interactions 

  • MVP which includes essential features and functionalities to address the main use case 

  • Demo showcasing the working functionality of the software product 

  • Presentation details: Team name, names of teammates, challenge statement selected, mentors you worked with (at least 2) 


You will be judged on: 

  • Impact and feasibility 

  • Innovation and creativity 

  • Presentation and communication 

  • Potential for future development 

  • Technical execution 

Hackathon Sponsors


$2,200 in prizes

Apple AirPods Pro 2nd Generation

Each member of the winning team will get a pair of Apple AirPods Pro, 2nd Generation

Play Station Classic

Each member of the 2nd place team will get a Play Station Classic.

BANGE Smart Backpack

Each member of the 3rd place team will get a BANGE Business Laptop Smart Backpack

Devpost Achievements

Submitting to this hackathon could earn you:


Jordan Walbesser

Jordan Walbesser

Andy Rose

Andy Rose

Lynne Thornton

Lynne Thornton
JSG Consulting

Scott Falbo

Scott Falbo

Jason Bartz

Jason Bartz
Level/Good Neighbor Fund

Judging Criteria

  • Impact and Feasibility
    To earn maximum points, the project must demonstrate a clear and substantial impact on the selected problem statement. It is highly feasible for implementation, taking into account resource requirements and potential obstacles.
  • Innovation and Creativity
    To earn maximum points, the project must exhibit exceptional creativity and innovation in its approach, concept, and technology. It introduces novel ideas or solutions that stand out and push boundaries.
  • Presentation and Communication
    To earn maximum points, the presentation must be exceptionally clear, engaging, and well-structured. It effectively conveys the challenge selected and the team’s solution. The team presents confidently and effectively explains their project.
  • Potential for Future Development
    To earn maximum points, the project must have clear potential for future development and expansion. It outlines a roadmap for scaling, improving, and evolving the solution.
  • Technical Execution
    To earn maximum points, the project is technically flawless, demonstrating a high level of proficiency in design, coding, and implementation. All project requirements are included. The team effectively explain their project to non-technical judges.

Questions? Email the hackathon manager

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