EMU students place ninth in the U.S. in international IEEEXTREME 17.0 Hackathon

Chanuth Jayatissa, Cameron Jones, and Karthikeya Thota of the BlackHatHackers in front of a mural wall with thumbs up.
The BlackHatHackers from left to right, Chanuth Jayatissa, Cameron Jones, and Karthikeya Thota.

YPSILANTI — IEEExtreme is an annual event organized by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). The IEEEXtreme 17.0 virtual 24-hour hackathon, which was held on October 27-28, involved 7,021 total participants representing 7,091 international teams, 127 of which came from the U.S. 

Representing EMU at this event were the BlackHatHackers, a team that consisted of three undergraduate computer science majors, freshmen Chanuth Jayatissa and Karthikeya Thota and sophomore Cameron Jones. The BlackHatHackers made consistent headway throughout the competition, ranking as high as 5th in the U.S. and 92nd worldwide at one point. At the end of the event, the team placed 9th in the U.S. and 521st internationally. 

"Participation in IEEE Xtreme, a premier Hackathon event, hones logical thinking and problem-solving skills, offering a distinct advantage in coding interviews,” said Thota. Participants were required to solve a new programming problem every two hours. The BlackHatHackers team had to utilize every second they could to formulate efficient solutions to the various coding problems. 

“It wasn't just about solving the problem, we also had to ensure that each answer was extremely efficient and passed all the test cases,” commented Jayatissa. Throughout the competition, team rankings constantly changed as each team tried to produce sufficient codes while solving new problems as they were released. 

“This hackathon was fun and very exciting! It enhanced my technical skills and resume for future job applications,” added Jones. 

For more information about the IEEExtreme 17.0 hackathon event visit https://ieeextreme.org/.

About Eastern Michigan University
Founded in 1849, Eastern is the second oldest public university in Michigan. It currently serves more than 14,000 students pursuing undergraduate, graduate, specialist, doctoral and certificate degrees in the arts, sciences and professions. In all, more than 300 majors, minors and concentrations are delivered through the University's Colleges of Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Engineering and Technology; Health and Human Services; and its graduate school. National publications regularly recognize EMU for its excellence, diversity, and commitment to applied education. Visit the University’s rankings and points of pride websites to learn more. For more information about Eastern Michigan University, visit the University's website. To stay up to date on University news, activities and announcements, visit EMU Today.

December 12, 2023

Written by:
Brooke Whittaker

Media Contact:
Melissa Thrasher