VIP Newsletter 004


Sent Wednesday, March 25th, 2020.

Hi all,

During these very hard days of COVID-19, I am appreciating the Hack Club community more than ever. Please email me back and let me know how you're doing.

This week, Hack Club's Slack had ~4,000 messages per day, double our usual volume. This Sunday, we hosted our first student AMA with GitHub founder and RedwoodJS creator Tom Preston-Werner. Nearly 100 students tuned in from 11 countries. Thank you @mojombo.

Before nationwide school closures, Hack Club students led nearly 400 after-school computer science clubs in almost all 50 states. Since none of them can meet, we've moved entirely online.

  1. Since last Monday, our high schoolers built & shipped dozens of projects. A few highlights: a visualization of the disparity in access to COVID testing, a procedural planet generator, and two of our students partnering with a factory in China to produce free N95 masks for essential USA workers using Hack Club Bank. Students are tooling around with Rust, Next.js, HTML, checking out new technologies like RedwoodJS, and pushing through coding problems together on Slack.
  2. Yesterday, Hack Club students were personally invited to be a partner at the Global COVID-19 Hackathon alongside engineers from Facebook, Microsoft, Pinterest, TikTok, Twitter, Slack, and more. See Mark Zuckerberg's post about it here. Breaking news: Hack Club students are together building the website for it! Click here for an early preview. We're also going to "storm the hackathon" with our students and see if we can win.
  3. We hosted a week-long "COVID Command Center"---where students met nightly on Zoom calls with Chris Walker (Head of Clubs) and our team to check out new projects, connect, learn & support each other while being physically disconnected. Students taught each other fun skills including creative writing, calculus, and game development in Rust through a series of 16 workshops over the weekend.

What can you do? We've seen members of the Hack Club community taking action. Hack Club supporters Theresa and Tom Preston-Werner gave $1 million to those most vulnerable in San Francisco, including children and hospitals. Also, SV angel investor Ron Conway launched the Frontline Responders Fund, raising nearly $4 million so far. Ron also generously donated to Hack Club this week, and we thank him for thinking of us.

Our 5-year goal is to have a Hack Club in 50% of U.S. high schools; our 10-year goal is to create a generation of problem solvers equipped with the "hacker" mindset and advanced 21st-century tech skills. Every day a new student joins Hack Club and ships, we get closer to that world.

In a world getting less certain by the day, Hack Club is providing one of the most friendly and important spaces of connection, creativity, & passion for teenagers around the world. Thank you for your support.

- Zach

View on GitHub