Sophia Huynh
Mar 4, 2018 · 5 min read
A typical day for the UNIHACK Fam includes chilling with the local teddy bear, sharing memes. (Terence, Dan, Sophie, Lee)

Run the show

The Logistics Team

Do you like solving problems? Logistics is the process of piecing together the puzzle of the actual event. It’s similar to what we do in software development, except the context you need in order to succeed in logistics is to empathise with your user (the competitors, mentors, sponsors, committee members, public).
You start by looking at their demands, to create a minimally viable event, and then see how much better you can make it with your current budget.

Logistics has a slow build of planning and ramps up to a more consistent pace throughout the last months of preparation until the actual day where you will be running the entire show.

What was your experience like in the Logistics Team?

Team bonding. Ghina, Lee (left). Rebecca, Wendy (right).

Who are you and what did you do before joining the team?

Ghina: “Logistics Team. I’ve had some experience in other organisations, but it was mostly on-the-day sort of help.”

Dan: “I was President of SUITS (University of Sydney Information Technology Society) in 2017, a logistics team member and I also did some videography on the day. I had some experience in previous jobs but I had never been to a hackathon before. When attending UNIHACK, I found that it had a really nice environment and awesome community feel — you’ve got everybody working their hardest and collaborating, creating new ideas under pressure.”

Rebecca: “I was in the Logistics Team. I had no experience whatsoever, had just come out of high school. No part-time work, only various high school experience.”

Why did you join the team?

Ghina: “Sophie told me to.” lol.
“I joined Logistics because it’s completely different to what I’m used to. I’ve found that I really enjoy Event Management — it’s like solving a big puzzle, with the aim to run a great event.”

: “I felt like my skills aligned with the job, and I would do well.”

Rebecca: “To get more exposure to working in a team, put myself out there. I had never been to a hackathon, but would like to attend one in the future.”

What was the hardest moment of being part of the team?

Ghina: “The most difficult part was learning how to solve problems quickly on the spot, and learning how to pick out the small details that need to be planned too.”

: “Learning how to adapt to change quickly. Problem solving — learning how to balance time and efficiency in your solution was quite a challenge. It was figuring how to be flexible — you know — don’t get too attached to one solution, because not everything will go to plan.”

“A big lesson for me was how important communication is between you and the team, industry, participants, judges, the public.”

Rebecca: “Leading the Mixer Night event. Mixer Night was hard because I was the youngest in the entire team, and it felt odd to order my seniors around. Especially in the beginning of the night, but over time it got easier to deal with.”

“Besides that, learning how to communicate — being careful with language in emails to portray the correct tone was new to me.”

ASEAN of UNIHACK (lol). It’s like somebody said ‘Only the East Asians in the team, come out for a photo’ and here we are.

Is there a memorable moment — prior or during the event?

Ghina: “I just really enjoyed working with friends. Everybody is so friendly, and despite some parts being tiring, hanging out with my friends during the hackathon makes everything so much better.”

: “The last hour: closing ceremony and pack-up. There’s a huge privilege in being in a position to celebrate people who put so much effort into creating something out of their imagination. Also, just feeling immensely proud of the entire organising committee, in how we were able to achieve what we set out to do through hard yet rewarding work.”

Rebecca: “Meeting new people, people from the Sydney team and company representatives. There was this moment when I was talking about food with Accenture representatives. The idea that we were talking to this person from a big company about something other than work was really nice.”

Any advice you’d give yourself in 2017?

Ghina: “In 2016, I wish I did more. I think student run organisations are great. Now my memories of university won’t just be me stuck in a room studying — it’s memories of UNIHACK. In 2017, I would have just wanted to know how to anticipate the growth of the event.”

: “Don’t stress about failure. With a good team and a detailed plan, you can achieve anything, and things will go well if you bring the right attitude.”

Rebecca: “Don’t be shy. Talk to more people, contribute more.”

Any extra comments for our readers?

Ghina: “It’s not that much of a different experience being a competitor, compared to an organiser. Really, a competitor’s experience is limited to 2 days, where ours just lasts for 7 months.”

: “Just go for it. It’s fun. You meet great people. Being part of the first Sydney team didn’t phase us at all. Watching Melbourne’s impact first-hand, and wanting to bring that to Sydney was a great feeling.”

Rebecca: “It’s very different to what I’m used to, it’s nice to see what university students are capable. You’re able to talk to competitors, and meet people you may not see anywhere. It was cool to see such a relaxed environment to network.”


Writings and musings about Australia's premier student hackathon.

Sophia Huynh

Written by

Digital Strategist. Ex-Software Engineer. Global Technology Team Project Lead @ UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network — Youth.


Writings and musings about Australia's premier student hackathon.

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