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Tech-savvy UCM, MIC Students Test Skill, Endurance During Kansas City Federal Reserve Code-A-Thon This Weekend

By Jeff Murphy, October 10, 2017

WARRENSBURG, MO – University of Central Missouri and Missouri Innovation Campus students put their computing skills to test against tech-savvy competitors from 15 other Midwestern universities when they participate in the Kansas City Federal Reserve Bank’s Code-A-Thon this weekend, Oct. 13-15.

This entirely online competition begins at 6 p.m. Friday and concludes at 11 p.m. Sunday, according to Belinda Copus, assistant professor of computer science and one of four UCM faculty mentors for the UCM and MIC participating teams. The three five-member teams are comprised of computer science and cybersecurity majors. While one team works out of The Missouri Innovation Campus in Lee’s Summit, the other two teams will be situated on the university’s Warrensburg campus throughout the competition. Participants may expect to spend long hours at the computer keyboard to meet some coding challenges.

“The event begins Friday evening with an unveiling of a theme, and the teams will have 48 hours to design and implement a software solution associated with the theme,” Copus said. “The final deliverable is the software and a brief video demonstrating their solution.”

She noted that teams are encouraged to be innovative in their solution and to apply programming to solve problems in new and even unexpected ways.

 “This competition will cause students to stretch themselves beyond their current skills, work as a team to accomplish great things in a small amount of time, and be a test of endurance. We are very proud of this group of students for undertaking this task and representing our university,” Copus said.

She added that it is an honor to be invited to participate  in the Code-A-Thon, particularly considering  the Federal Reserve Bank’s reputation as a leader in in the use of software in innovative ways to solve banking problems.

“We’re excited for this opportunity to work with our industry partner,” Copus said.

Other schools participating in the event are: Creighton University,  Kansas State University, Missouri State University, Missouri University of Science and Technology, Missouri Western State University, Northwest Missouri State University, Oklahoma State University, University of Colorado – Boulder, University of Colorado – Denver, University of Kansas, University of Lincoln – Nebraska, Southwest Baptist University, University of Missouri – Columbia,  University of Missouri - Kansas City, and University of Nebraska – Omaha,.

Student competitors on the Warrensburg campus will be, Team 1 - Kyle Gorgas, Allen Anthes, Samantha Stanley, Marc Funston, and Demietrius Huff; Team 2 - Tyler Hein, Ryan Evans, Adam Bairos, Justin Durham, and Michael Minzey; and Team 3 competitors from The MIC are  Joshua Savage, Justin Kelleher, Logan Hall, Cody Dement, and Spencer Werremeyer.

In addition to Copus, UCM faculty mentors  are Yui Man Lui,  assistant professor of computer science;  Hyung Bae Park, assistant professor of computer science; and Lisa Oyler, faculty member at The Missouri Innovation Campus.

This is UCM’s first year of involvement in the Kansas City Federal Reserve Bank’s Code-A-Thon.


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