Kimberly Browske, Senior, Beaumont High School
Kimberly Browske and her six Beaumont High School teammates had never developed a website, let alone learned the coding languages Cloud9 and Ruby on Rails required by the nine-week CLETeenHack, where kids learn to code and help the community. Team Be@utech entered the competition anyway. In May, the girls won $2,500 for their work developing the Vote Now and sample ballot pages for a website geared at informing teens about the upcoming election.
You think you’re going to be able to develop [the page] a lot more and learn a lot more. But we would only meet with our mentor once a week, so it was really only like we had maybe eight or nine days to do this.
We would work on it outside of our meetings with our mentors, but it seemed like we were trying to learn rather than just develop a page. The seven of us had never used Cloud9 to develop a website, so we had issues communicating how to get our code together, and if one of us modified it, how could another person see it and test it.
We drew up a design on a whiteboard and tried to make our physical website look like our drawn out design. We drew inspiration from what we’ve seen in the past, what we’ve seen on different websites, what looks good and official. We wanted a specific horizontal scrolling for one of the options on the sample ballot page, and we took that from the horizontal scrolling on Netflix.
Once we saw our page go up and that the function was working right, it was a relief. We were all just going on the website on our own laptops and testing things out.
We had a presentation meeting to close the CLETeenHack. Three teams were selected to present in front of the entire group. They announced it like third place, second place, first place. As soon as they announced second place, we knew that we would win. We were all super excited.