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First Annual McNair Hacks Led by Nepali American Student Inspires Young Innovators

Updated: Special: Jersey City, NJ– The inaugural high school hackathon, "McNair Hacks," hosted by the computer science students of Dr. Ronald E. McNair Academic High School, Jersey City, New Jersey, USA. This groundbreaking event saw over 60 students from more than ten schools come together to showcase their talents and creativity in the realm of technology. The hackathon was spearheaded by McNair Hacks Student Group President, Prakshab Adhikari, a Nepali-American high school sophomore whose leadership has marked a significant milestone for South Asian and Nepali American students.

Dr. Ronald E. McNair Academic High School, ranked number one in New Jersey for its academic and diversity performance, served as the perfect venue for this event.

Prakshab Adhikari expressed his pride in the event, stating, "It's incredible to see so many students come together to create and innovate. This hackathon is just the beginning, and I hope it inspires more students, especially those from underrepresented backgrounds, to pursue their passions in technology."

Prakshab’s leadership has not only inspired his peers but has also paved the way for a more inclusive and innovative future in technology.

First, Second, Third and Environmental winners.

The hackathon featured a diverse array of projects, from software applications to innovative prototypes. Participants worked collaboratively over a 24-hour period, demonstrating their problem-solving skills and passion for computer science. This event not only highlighted the talent of these young students but also their commitment to making a positive impact on their communities and beyond.

Social justice, healthcare, education winners.

A team of empowered students from McNair Academic High School came together to form a diverse group of problem solvers and innovative thinkers. United by their commitment to learning, collaboration, and a love for computer science, they strive to contribute meaningfully to the world around them. Their dedication was evident in the success of McNair Hacks, which served as a platform for fostering intellectual curiosity and creativity.

Reflecting on the event, the group stated, “In our progressively digital world, where technology plays a crucial role in shaping the future, the absence of accessible avenues for computer science presents a significant challenge. We aim to bridge this gap and inspire more students to explore the exciting opportunities in tech.”

The success of McNair Hacks underscores the importance of diversity and leadership in technology education. It also sets a high standard for future events, encouraging more students, especially those from underrepresented backgrounds, to pursue their passions in computer science.

McNair Hacks stands as a testament to the power of student-driven initiatives and the potential of young minds to drive change in our digital world. Its popularity showcases as a testament to the power of diversity, leadership, and academic excellence, paving the way for future events that will continue to inspire and nurture young talent.

McNair Hacks: At a Glance

● Event: McNair Academic High School Hackathon

○ Date: April 28th, 2024

○ Location: Hudson Community College

○ Attendees: Over 60 students from 10+ schools in the district

● Presented by

○ Mcnair Academic High School

○ Students on team

■ Teacher Advisor: Mr..Benjamin Kelly

■ President: Prakshab Adhikari

■ Vice President: Georgiy Derkachev

■ Public relations Officer: Shelley Ma

■ Secretary: Rudra Prajapati

■ Website Manager: Aryaman Kapoor

■ Social Media Manager: Maahi Khandelwal

■ Graphic Designer: Shiven Singla

■ Treasurer: Neil Mehra

■ Photographer: Rose Shrestha

■ Organizers: Shorook Esmaeel, Seal Kariuki, Rana Pathak

○ Organized over: 3 months

● Sponsors

○ Hudson Speaks

○ Diyotech

○ Greater Jersey nepali Samaj

○ Dr. Vishnu Maya Pariyar Foundation

● Purpose:

To host a hackathon event

○ Definition:

A gathering where students engage in collaborative computer


● Highlights:

○ Keynote Speaker:

Tejas Vedantham, Georgia Tech alumni and software developer at Capital One

■ Shared personal story

■ Conducted Q&A session

■ Provided career and computer science job market advice

○ Workshops:

■ Python


● Announcement of Winners

○ First place

■ Team Name:

● Paideia

■ Individuals:

● Yahir Mercado

● Dhruv Machhi

○ Second place

■ Team Name

● Our Fight Against Carbon Emissions ■ Individuals

● Jayden Narine

● Shayaan Mahmood

○ Third Place

■ Team Name

● AI Flood Protection

■ Individuals

● Rohan Arunkumar

● Rudra Prajapati

● Prajay Kolakaluri

● Ameya Modi

○ Environmental Track Winner

■ Team name:

● Ecotrivia ■ Individuals

● Yuvika Singh

● Tisha Awasthi

● Angelica Suri

○ Healthcare Track Winner

■ Team name

● Dermatology Consult ■ Individuals

● Youstina Makar

● Aditri Pendyala

● Maheen Chaudhry

○ Education Track Winner

■ Team name

● Attendify ■ Individuals

● Talha Mahmud

● Pablo Lontoc

○ Social Justice Track Winner

■ Team name

● Pro-Testing ■ Individuals

● Pratik Adhikari

● Abdalrhman Esmeel

● Eric Chen

Visit McNair Hacks’ website to know more about future events:



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