Today we are unveiling a brand new way for student hackathons to become a part of the Major League Hacking season. We’re kicking off Spring 2016 Sanctioning with some changes to make it more awesome than ever.
We’re constantly talking to hackers, organizers, and sponsors to learn how we can best support this community. We strongly believe that every aspiring hacker should have the opportunity to learn, build, and share their creations with the world. Our launches today will allow us to serve more hackers than ever before and help them become a part of this life-changing community that we are building together.
The MLH Sanctioning Guide is being split into a set of Membership Guidelines and Community Values. Since the MLH Sanctioning Guide launched nearly two years ago, we’ve been iterating upon it. Our sanctioning guidelines have helped to provide a consistently great experience for hackers at MLH Season events, regardless of where in the world they might be or who might be organizing them.
Splitting the document in two better outlines both the purpose and outcome of being an MLH Member Event. As this community grows, we need to clearly articulate our shared values so that we are all focusing on what is important: creating an empowering environment where hackers of all skill levels can create amazing things. The MLH Community Values codify this in a way that describes not only the types of events that hackers can expect from the MLH Season, but also the types of events that we want to work with because of their positive contributions to this community. Our Membership Guidelines ensure that these Community Values are taken into account when events are organized, including upholding the MLH Code of Conduct, not charging attendees, having clear registration guidelines, and more.
MLH Member Events can now build their own benefits package. All events will be given the same basic support like event listings, on-site MLH photographers, discounted Hackcon tickets, and more. But to allow for more flexibility and differentiation amongst events, you can now opt-in to receive additional benefits such as the Hardware Lab, access to MyMLH, or on-site help.
Over the last few years our league benefits have ensured a quality standard across all events in the season. They have been so successful that is hard to remember the time, not so long ago, where only a few events had the niceties that we have come to expect from all MLH Season events.
The new benefits structure will allow us to support more hackers while also giving organizers a choice in what benefits they want to take advantage of.
Sharing Our Expertise
We are revamping how we share our expertise with MLH Member Events and within the organizer community. The MLH League team currently spends upwards of 100 hours on the phone with hackathon organizers every month, but there is no one-size-fits-all for this type of expert Support.
We will be replacing our recurring organizer calls with the option for organizers to book Office Hours with MLH League team members. We will also be scheduling monthly group Stand-Ups where organizers can come together to share what they have learned with each other and with the MLH team. And lastly, we will be holding sessions with community experts from outside of MLH. These people can share best practices on community building, sponsorship, and more from beyond the hackathon organizer community.
High School Member Events
We saved one of our most exciting announcements for last. The new structure of the league makes it possible for high school hackathons to become MLH Member Events. They can now take advantage of our Membership Benefits, Office Hours, and more to spread the hacker ethos to an entire generation of high school students around the world in an increasingly high quality way.
We will be starting off with a small cohort of great high school events and expanding over time as we learn how to support this amazing group of up-and-coming hackers and organizers.
These changes will allow us to work with more events, support more hackers, and ultimately enable the student hacker movement to reach its new potential so that we can share the hacker ethos with an entirely new demographic of students. We look forward to working with you to continue empowering and supporting the student hacker movement. As always, feel free to share your feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org.