various involvements @ hack4impact

while browsing the catalogue of clubs on campus, this one group with a catchy name caught my attention.

after learning the focus was building projects for local nonprofits and not ethical hacking i became interested.

i sent an email to the president to say hello and excitedly showed up to the club showcase booth hoping to join.

thanks for taking me in @eric @ivonne @grant and @everyone in club!

my roles

i was fairly involved in the cal poly chapter during my time in college.

when i joined there was a dwindling group of us meeting once a week to try and coordinate efforts to build a simple form for volunteers.

by my last year there was around a hundred students and a handful of professors involved on multiple projects.

it was so very great to see all of this interest.

happily hugging a recycle bin with a matching club shirt

managing as a co-executive director

passion for the mission and past roles on the board shined insight into the inner workings and outward duties of the club.

a supportive group of directors and @tim as a parter made many goals feasible. i really appreciate @all.

membership operations

coordinating people with projects and prioritizing outcomes for both.

the enjoyable club experience was a big reason for making software in this group.

ensuring times were worthwhile for members presented the following:

projects on a timeline

sourcing to delivery and everything between happened in sequence.

development cycles followed a schedule spanning the entire year as the primary focus of club activities.

orchestrating efforts for ongoing experiences entailed the following:

continuous processes

ongoing happenings entailed tending and documentation to flourish.

preparing processes that facilitated club longevity meant measuring events in the moment.

capturing reasons behind decisions and other tacit knowledge meant:

lessons in leadership

outlining a vision and coordinating teams took a different skill set.

managing various club operations to support product and engineering and design across multiple teams necessitated new perspective.

energy was scattered greatly but concentrated on interpersonal ideas:

teaching as the director of engineering

directors no longer always had direct involvement developing projects as priority shifted to supporting teams.

advising tech leads on technical topics and timelines in a team setting motivated the creation of this position.

guiding an education experience

project: introduction to web development bootcamp

incoming members were taught technologies by a teacher learning the same technologies.

as the club grew we standardized most technologies used to reduce unfamiliarity between projects and efforts of ongoing maintenance.

trends in the industry encouraged mongodb, express.js with node.js, and react - the mern stack was decided. those tools and techniques for developing a website were unknown to many so a bootcamp was scheduled.

curriculum was planned that introduced the concepts of html with css and iteratively extended into stateful applications.

members applied these concepts to a personal recipe website that evolved into a dynamic grocery list generator. completing exercises earned members a fancy certificate and practical preparation for the project cycle.

before each lesson arrived i devoured content on the topics to write slides and supplemental materials. after each checkpoint i provided feedback on changes. some best practices were shared but all of my examples in javascript were missing a semicolon.

juggling workshops while attending my own classes was a clown show.

pushing to production

project: serverless deployments to aws with express

shoehorning servers into a stateless environment for scaled savings.

projects progressed throughout the year with development wrapping up towards spring.

all code changes were happening on personal machines but the need for a deployed environment was raised in the winter. previous projects were hosted on heroku but our increasing project count made this option unsustainable.

compute costs would have consumed our entire budget.

targeting apps to individual organizations made usage based pricing appealing. the offerings of aws were attractive.

packaging apps for lambda was simplified by an existing package that interpreted serverless requests for express.js. frontend hosting was easily handled by a managed service. automatic deployments on code changes were configured with a custom github action.

spring mostly focused on deploying projects and fixing edge cases.

all projects were eventually served on subdomains of a shared site! hosted records with the domain accounted for most of the expenses at $1.50 each month.

the compute and storage costs totaled to around $0.02 each month.

leading as a project technical lead

project: cat intake portal for the cal poly cat program

understanding full stack and the development cycle was just enough experience to give a project direction.

outreach volunteers at a local organization sought a tool to monitor the mental health needs of individuals in the homeless population.

initial development focused on a mobile application for fieldwork and a website interface for continued office operations.

some of my involvements included:

halfway through the development cycle we moved virtual and the original organization lost resources to proceed with the project.

navigating this brought interesting experiences:

wonderful efforts from the team made delivering an updated project possible. efforts that continued into the summer. thank y’all so much.

this project helped the cat program shift from tracking intakes on an excel spreadsheet to a webpage that potential adopters can browse.

building as a software developer

project: advocate activity tracking form for slo casa

this was my first time collaborating on a project and building with django. everything was interesting.

capturing information on the care advocates provided children was demanding for both advocates and program supervisors.

creating an online form that also notified supervisors was planned.

some of the features i implemented include:

delivering this project helped slo casa switch from mail to digital delivery for advocate activity forms.

some more about hack4impact

hack4impact is a nonprofit organization focused on using software as a tool for social good.

there are chapters at campuses around the world building to support community focused organizations.

learn more about the organization and offer your support if possible.

the hack4impact logo with a horse emoji