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TribeHacks IX is a wrap!

Tribe Hacks IX

TribeHacks IX, W&M’s annual hackathon, came to a close a few weekends ago on April 21st. W&M undergraduate students spent the weekend in Swem Library, working on computer science and engineering projects to showcase their skills and solve real-world problems! Competing for prizes such as Nintendo Switches, iPads, and Busch Gardens memberships, hackers were focused on creating technically challenging and impressive projects.

TribeHacks is organized by students in ACM, W&M’s chapter of the Association for Computing Machinery, composed of undergraduate students interested in technology. This year, Vedha Navudu, ‘26, and Krishna ​​Swaminathan, ‘27, led the organization of the hackathon.

Student volunteers dedicated their time this weekend to hold 16 free workshops, in order to teach their peers a variety of new technical skills, ranging from “Intro to Python”, to “Intro to Minecraft Datapack Programming”, to “Build A Minibot.” Volunteers were independent undergraduate students hoping to spend their weekend helping their peers, or members of partnering student organizations, such as Tribe Cyber, Robotics Club, 1991 Linux Club, 1693 Minecraft Club, oSTEM, W&M iGEM, Griffin Fechtschule, and the W&M Makerspace.

This year, Tribehacks also offered cybersecurity challenges provided by Tribe Cyber. These challenges were capture-the-flag style, and the first teams to crack them would receive prizes corresponding to their difficulty level. Only one of these challenges was completed in the 24 hours.

Entertaining events were also held regularly throughout the weekend, giving hackers a chance to relax and connect with peers. Student organizations were involved with these events as well, such as the Poker Club’s Poker tournament, the Esports program’s Super Smash Bros. tournament, Linux Club’s SuperTuxKart Race, and Google Student Developer Club’s Murlan games.

A full schedule of events can be found at

With 164 hackers present, 27 projects were submitted at the end of the weekend. Here is a glimpse of some of the top projects submitted this year. To see every project, visit

Looking forward: &hacks X

As we approach the 10th anniversary of William & Mary’s hackathon, student leaders want to make some big changes. First, W&M's hackathon has a new name: &hacks (pronounced “and-hacks”). W&M's tech community on a liberal arts campus makes us unique- we want our hackathon to celebrate holistic, creative, and impactful hacks, using strong tech skills to solve non-techy problems! The “&” represents the complexity of our hackers and the projects we create, leading to effective approaches to real-world problems! We have explored this with the Ampersand Award, a prize track in Tribehacks IX that celebrated multi-disciplined projects and want to expand the ampersand’s emphasis in our work.

Second, we are moving to the fall. That means that &hacks X will be taking place next semester, Fall 2024! We hope to open up more opportunities for our hackers this way, by allowing for better engagement with industry partners during their hiring seasons.

Third, we are moving to a fully in-person hackathon. We want our hackers to be able to interact with each other, mentors, and judges, in a more personal way! We plan to return to in-person judging as well, to allow for more Q&A and a better understanding of projects!

And there is still more to come …. We can’t announce everything yet, but you can stay updated by following our Instagram, @andhackswm. Our student leaders are working hard to improve this event for hackers! If you have any ideas or feedback, or would like to be involved in &Hacks X, please don’t hesitate to email or, &Hacks X co-chairs.