With the Imagine Cup World Semifinals round now underway, more than 200 teams are competing to advance to the World Finals this July in Seattle. The ones who make it are going to face some very talented VIP judges who will ask the tough questions.
Microsoft’s new CEO, Satya Nadella, will be at World Finals to judge the best student projects. Satya was just 25 years old when he first joined Microsoft, two years after completing his Master’s degree in Computer Science at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and he’s now risen all the way to CEO. With his forward-thinking, cloud-first approach Satya is already making waves in the technology industry as he drives Microsoft towards a bold future.
Satya will be joined by Hadi Partovi, the founder of education non-profit Code.org which helps kids learn programming. Hadi is a Harvard graduate with a long career as an entrepreneur, angel investor, and strategic advisor. He co-founded Tellme Networks and iLike and has advised companies including Facebook, Dropbox, airbnb, Zappos, and many more. With Code.org, Hadi has introduced the basics of programming to tens of millions of students around the world.
And our third special guest judge is Erik Martin, the general manager of internet phenomenon Reddit.com. Erik is a graduate of Tulane University and was a documentary filmmaker and videographer before he entered the technology field. In 2012 TIME Magazine named Erik one of the 100 most influential people in the world and with the success of Reddit’s “Ask Me Anything” series the site has only grown in popularity and cultural significance.
Our three VIP judges will welcome our Imagine Cup students from around the world on their visit to Seattle. We’re very pleased to be partnering with the University of Washington, where our students will be staying in the school’s latest high-tech living spaces during World Finals 2014. The beautiful and historic campus of UW, as well as the Microsoft campus across the water in Redmond, will be where these talented student teams present their projects. And of course, Seattle’s iconic Space Needle will play a featured role as well.
It’s going to be an amazing week and we’re thrilled to have Satya, Hadi, and Erik on hand to meet the top teams.
John Scott Tynes
Imagine Cup Program Lead
Microsoft Student Developers