I’m considering a move to Columbus and thought what better way to get to know the situation than immerse myself in it for a weekend. I met the organizer of the GiveBackHack when she was the facilitator for the first Startup Weekend I attended in Cedar Rapids.
The format was very similar to Startup Weekend. The main difference being it was solely focused on ideas based around social good. I’ve done several Startup Weekends and taken one of my ideas through one. Since then, I’ve changed my approach and look to join on with an idea that I’m interested in.
This time I joined an idea that interested me because it seemed to be pretty data-centric. It was focused on the idea in presidential elections that you need to get similar people elected in more local elections if you want to effect change. The idea was spurred when the leader, Charlie, read this article.
We ultimately didn’t propose a final solution but more research on what would help get people more involved with local elections. I definitely learned a lot about the political system and, as expected, became more cynical of it. Ultimately I would argue that our efforts were focused on getting more money involved in politics even if it is “better” money since it would have been individual money. It could be pointed out that we were less focused on direct social good than other teams.
I still had fun and met a lot of cool people and learned new things about Columbus.
I was in charge of our slide deck and I worked a final joke slide in as usual. I texted Jayne that if the joke lands then my work here is done and I’d be happy with the weekend’s results.