maroon wave
SU Team Earns First Place at Largest East Coast Hackathon

SU Team Earns First Place at Largest East Coast Hackathon

By SU Public Relations

SALISBURY, MD---Salisbury University students hacked their way to promoting better mental health and to first place at the University of Maryland, College Park’s 2024 Bitcamp computer programming competition. 

The winning SU team included juniors Isaac Dugan, of Thurmont, MD, and Spencer Presley, of Laurel, DE; senior Brian Bowers, of Damascus, MD; and James Montebell ‘23, of Seaford, DE. 

“This is the latest win among a long history of SU computer science students excelling in programming competitions,” said Dr. Xiaohong (Sophie) Wang, chair of SU’s Computer Science Department. “These students used creativity and advanced knowledge to prove how they excel against fellow student programmers across the state.” 

The team programmed through the weekend during the competition’s 36-hour challenge to build the most innovative, creative and functional program. Bitcamp is the largest collegiate hackathon on the East Coast with more than 1,500 participants. 

The SU students’ program, Termbook, a terminal cloud-based web application for journaling, earned the award for Best Bitcamp Hack. Its design features a required prompt upon open that is tailored to developers and encourages daily journaling accountability in an effort to promote positive mental health habits. 

“Thinking of an idea that is functional and useful is just as important as having a perfectly coded application,” said Bowers. “I think our team knows our strengths and assigns project roles accordingly, which helps us to make the most of our limited time. Each member works incredibly hard on building the best end result possible.

“Above all, centering your program on a topic that is important and there is a need for helps take the concept beyond the scope of one competition.” 

Bitcamp marks the fourth and final collegiate competition for Bowers, and it is one he won’t forget. 

“We definitely finished the year strong and on the best win possible,” he said. “I would recommend SU students continue to challenge themselves and explore these opportunities outside of the classroom. From development and project interface to bug fixing and building from concept, these competitions are some of the closest real-world experiences computer science majors will have before beginning their careers.”

Learn more about SU and opportunities to Make Tomorrow Yours at the SU website.