OpenCDC Hackathon: Oct. 3rd + 4th

OpenCDC Hackathon October 3rd and 4th 2018

Registration is now available for the OpenCDC Hackathon scheduled for October 3–4, 2018, and co-sponsored by the Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) and the Division of Health Informatics and Surveillance (DHIS) in the Center for Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Laboratory Services (CSELS). Hosted by the Accelerator Team (XLR) in DHIS, the hackathon is open to all CDC employees, including FTEs, contractors, and fellows, interested in open source technologies, innovation, and collaboration at CDC.

During the hackathon, participants from across CDC will engage in collaborative computer programming to solve one of five identified challenges that the agency has or is likely to encounter. To solve the hackathon challenges, participants will use modern technology available to CDC personnel such as the Open Shift platform, Docker, MongoDB, and microservices.

Organizers planned the hackathon to increase participants’ awareness of tools and technologies available to CDC employees, help participants gain hands-on experience using these new tools, promote cross-CIO collaborations and relationships, and create new code or solutions that could be immediately put into practice to solve real business needs at CDC.

To register, please complete the form at by October 1, 2018. The hackathon will be located at the CDC Roybal Campus, Building 19, Auditorium B1/B2.

If you have questions or need more information, please contact the DHIS Accelerator Team at or read the CDC Connects article about the team’s last hackathon held May 23–24, 2017.

Download the hackathon poster here.


The event is located at the CDC Roybal Campus, Building 19, Auditorium B1/B2.

Day 1 - Wednesday, October 3, 2018
Time Location Description
  8:00 -   9:00 Aud B1/B2 Arrival & Coffee
  9:00 -   9:05 Aud B1/B2 Hackathon Opening - Introductions
  9:05 -   9:10 Aud B1/B2 Hackathon Opening - Jason Bonander, OIIRM director
  9:10 -   9:15 Aud B1/B2 Hackathon Opening - Dr. Paula Yoon, DHIS director
  9:15 -   9:30 Aud B1/B2 Hackathon Opening - Erik Knudsen, XLR team: Overview of Foundation Services
  9:30 -   9:45 Aud B1/B2 Hackathon Opening - Visu Patlolla, SDP team: Overview of ECPaaS
  9:45 - 10:00 Aud B1/B2 Hackathon Opening - Drew Morris, XLR team: Hackathon rules of engagement and overview
10:00 - 12:00 Breakout rooms Hackathon Session 1
12:00 -   1:00   Break/Lunch
  1:00 -   4:50 Breakout rooms Hackathon Session 2
  4:50 -   5:00 Aud B1/B2 Wrap-up and Announcements for Day 1
Day 2 - Thursday, October 4, 2018
Time Location Description
  8:00 -   9:00 Aud B1/B2 Arrival & Coffee
  9:00 -   9:15 Aud B1/B2 Morning Announcements
  9:15 - 12:00 Breakout rooms Hackathon Session 3
12:00 -   1:00   Break/Lunch
  1:00 -   3:10 Breakout rooms Hackathon Session 4
  3:10 -   3:30 Aud B1/B2 Final Submissions
  3:30 -   4:30 Aud B1/B2 Teams pitch their submissions & Judging
  4:30 -   4:45 Aud B1/B2 Winner announced, Closing Thoughts, and Feedback
After hours Marlow's Everyone is invited to Marlow’s Tavern across the street at Emory Point to discuss tech!
Frequently-asked questions
  1. What should I bring? Bring your CDC-issued laptop. A personal laptop, a small notepad, and some pens are recommended but not required. If you’re a contractor that doesn’t have a CDC-issued laptop, then we recommend bringing your contractor-issued laptop with you. You can also request a CDC-issued loaner laptop.

  2. What food options are available? Attendees are encouraged to seek out the various food options at the Roybal Campus, such as the restaurants at Emory Point. The Roybal campus also has several cafés. Water will be provided.

  3. Is there anything I should know as a participating subject matter expert? We recommend coming prepared with a good problem scenario for the development team. It should be simple enough that it can be prototyped in less than two days. If you bring data, be sure the data is either publicly-accessible or fake. The Accelerator Team will be on-site both days to help teams brainstorm good problem scenarios and solutions. We’re also going to showcase several problem scenarios during the opening for teams to choose from if they are uncomfortable coming up with their own.

  4. Is there anything I should know about getting onto the CDC Roybal campus? We suggest getting a CDC decal for your car. If you don’t have a decal, your vehicle may be subject to a search before it’s allowed onto the campus. Decals can be acquired at any guard desk.

  5. How do I get in touch with the organizers? Send an email to with any questions, problems, or concerns. Members of several teams will also be on-site both days for hands-on assistance: The Accelerator Team (who are also the developers and maintainers of the Foundation Services), OCIO, ITSO AHB engineers from the ECPaaS team, and the Surveillance Data Platform team from CSELS.

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