Reflection on the Hackathon

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    Anounymous User38Anounymous User38
    Participant

    Service Learning

     

    I experienced ‘service learning’ for my first time during the Hackathon event, where I learned many new skills. Service learning provides opportunities for students to develop their civic engagement skills by working with members of the community. In this case we were working with the residents of Arranmore and it was a great experience.

     

    I gained valuable experience while working as part of a team during the event and I also learned how to think critically in a real-life scenario. It was a good experience solving some real-life issues rather than answering questions on an exam paper. We had to quickly bond with members of the community and try to look at these problems (on the island) from their perspective. They gave us a great insight as to what their views were on the topic of depopulation on the island. Their perspective and views changed our approach as to how we were going to solve the issue of depopulation, because we did not know what it was like, from first-hand experience, to live on the Island of Arranmore. Although they gave us some great insight, we did offer some value, as outsiders who were trying to solve issues on the Island.  We (our team of students) provided solutions, as people who had never visited the island and therefor I believe we were not biased and could think ‘more outside the box’. It would not have been possible to find a realistic solution without working as a team (with other students) and with the residents of Arranmore. This was one of the huge benefits of service learning.

     

    We had to make use of brainstorming, working together and critical thinking as a method to find solutions. We made use of planning, analysing and reflection to help reach a conclusion. I believe that I will definitely find myself in a situation, in the future, where I will need to make use of teamwork skills and critical thinking skills to progress further in my career. It is very important to be able to build relationships, work with others and have the ability to think independently in the world of business. If I could change one thing about my first experience of service learning, I would have liked to have met up with the community of Arranmore in person.

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