Fontys ICT wins 2nd place in Odyssey Hackathon

Fontys Information and Communication Technology
The Fontys team FHICTDigital won €1500 today at the Odyssey Hackathon in Groningen. The team came second in the category “Rethink Retirement”, which had to find solutions for the pension system. Supervisor Erdinç Saçan looks back.

Groningen has been the centre of the world when it comes to blockchain hackathons for some years now. What used to be called Dutchchain Hackathon continued this year as Odyssey Hackathon: more than 1500 pioneers from 29 countries came together in Groningen for four days, to work in the largest physical blockchain & AI Hackathon in the world. For the third edition of this huge cocreation event, international companies, investors and the Dutch government were involved as launching customers together with 100 selected teams. In addition, there were more than 100 Jedi’s (experts) who were ready for all teams to help where necessary. In addition to Jedi’s, there were Track Majors, accelerators and many judges.

One of the Jedi’s was Eveline Druncks, now an entrepreneur, but formerly an alumna of Fontys University ICT and a lecturer at Fontys University Marketing Management. She says: “Cool, intense and satisfying. It’s constantly switching because there are so many people. But after a while, you get to know certain teams, which you then visit on a regular basis. Or teams that ask me questions about my expertise via Mobilize, the communication app used by all participants and experts. And if you can help those teams to tweak their concept, so it fits with what the jury is looking for, it’s extremely satisfying.”

A die-hard hackathon participant, Steve Thijssen, once told me: “If you’ve been to the hackathon in Groningen, the rest of the hackathons will be disappointing”. And I can really confirm that now. The Odyssey team has organised an amazing event where business, education and government come together. Not only commercial companies but also charities. Attention is paid to ethics, society, the environment, everything.

The participating teams were divided into 11 tracks that together had 20 challenges. Here is an impression of the start:

Fontys Hogeschool ICT was present for the second time. In 2018, a team from Fontys University of Applied Sciences ICT has already won a track. This year there were two teams consisting of 12 students from different years. Two lecturers were involved as supervisors, Erdinç Saçan and Kees Velthuijs.

The student teams were both within the track “Rethink Retirement“. This challenge comes from the pension administrator APG. Each team had its own challenge; FHICTDigital went to work on “Value before retirement“, while PurplePension was engaged in “Manage your own retirement plan“. The two teams FHICTDigital and PurplePension consist of team captains and members:

Captain: Luc Correia Cabrito – Semester 2 ICT & Software Engineering
Mike Kotte, Semester 2 ICT & Software Engineering
Dennis Verbuijs S6 ICT & Software Engineering
Giovanni Koolhoven S4 ICT & Software Engineering
Steven van ‘t Klooster S4 ICT & Business
Lisan van de Visser S4 ICT & Media Design

Captain: Arnoud Bevers – Semester 6 ICT & Software Engineering
Diego van Loenen – Semester 4 ICT & Media design – Open Innovation
Anouk Martens – Semester 4 ICT & Media Design – Open Innovation
Jay Kamphuis – Semester 4 ICT & Business & Cybersecurity
Remco Aarssen – Semester 4 ICT & Software Engineering & Cybersecurity
Luuk van den Maagdenberg – Semester 4 ICT & Software Engineering & Cybersecurity

Watch the video report:

Read more about the Odyssey Hackathon here.