Major League Hacking 2020 Hackathon Season

VolHacks IV

09.27 • 09.29

Hack On Rocky Top

During 36 caffeine-filled, sleepless hours, students from the University of Tennessee and elsewhere will brainstorm, build, break, test, and deploy whatever they can imagine, for the chance to win amazing prizes.

There will also be plenty of time to interact with professional mentors and engineers, meet recruiters, and listen to great tech talks and tutorials from sponsors.







The Venue

The Min Kao building is one of the newest buildings on campus, with an expansive interior, modern architecture, and ridiculous internet speeds. Min Kao houses the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, and is a hotspot of innovation at the university. This weekend, it will be home to over 300 hackers building the technology of tomorrow.


square feet



food and drinks


mile from downtown


floors of hacking space



Friday, 9/27

Check In Min Kao 4th Floor 5:00pm
Opening Ceremony Dougherty 416 6:00pm
Team Formation Dougherty 416 7:00pm
Dinner Min Kao 646 7:30pm
Hacking Commences Min Kao 1-4 Floors 8:00pm
Elo Tech Talk Min Kao 404 8:30-9:30pm
JTV Tech Talk Min Kao 404 9:30-10:00pm
Cisco Tech Talk Min Kao 404 10:00-10:30pm

Saturday, 9/28

Midnight Snack Min Kao 646 12:00am
Breakfast Min Kao 646 8:00am
Lunch Min Kao 646 12:00pm
Siemens Tech Talk Min Kao 404 1:00-1:30pm
Asurion Tech Talk Min Kao 404 2:00-2:30pm
JTV Tech Talk Min Kao 404 2:30–3:00pm
Slide Show Karaoke Min Kao 404 5:00-6:00pm
Dinner Min Kao 646 6:00pm
Cup Stacking Min Kao 4th Floor 8:00pm

Sunday, 9/29

Midnight Snack Min Kao 646 12:00am
Hacker Submission TBD 8:00am
Breakfast Min Kao 646 8:00am
Judging At your tables! 9:00am
Closing Ceremony Doughery 416 11:00am


Register online to reserve your place! That way, if we fill up, we don't have to give you a thumbs-down after you get here.

  • Register for VolHacks IV

  • Sponsors

    VolHacks IV is presented by Elo. This event would not be possible without the incredible support of these organizations.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    What is a hackathon?

    A student hackathon is a marathon of innovation, usually 24-36 hours in which students passionate about creating concepts and technology form teams and compete with other teams to generate, develop and/or implement a new idea from scratch in order to learn and have fun."

    How much does it cost?

    Nothing. Zero. Null. The event is completely free for eligible and registered students. We will provide you with the venue, food, drinks, place to sleep if needed, Wi-Fi, etc. You just need to show up!

    Who can come?

    All current undergraduate and graduate students, or those who graduated within the last 12 months, are allowed to attend (if you registered through If you currently attend the University of Tennessee, you are guaranteed a spot, with or without registration — but please register to make sure we have enough swag and food!

    Will you provide travel reimbursements?

    The VolHacks team is excited to offer travel reimbursement this year for hackers attending our event! We want to lighten the burden on hackers who are coming from far away! The exact travel reimbursement model is shown in the chart below. To encourage carpooling, your vehicle has to have at least three people to get reimbursement. If you have any questions or need special accommodations please feel free to reach out to us. If you sign up, please make all efforts to attend!

    Unfortunately, we cannot offer reimbursement for those who are flying at this time.

    Italian Trulli

    Will there be free food, drinks, and caffeine?

    Yes! Absolutely! We will provide catered meals, drinks at all times, snack breaks, and endless caffeine.

    Where do I sleep?

    We will have a designated quiet sleeping area on site, and you are encouraged to bring sleeping bags, blankets, pillows, toiletries, and anything else you need to sleep. There are no showers at the venue, so please be prepared to go without showering unless you have other accommodations.

    When and where is VolHacks?

    VolHacks will take place on September 27th to September 29th, at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville in the Min Kao EECS Building. Click here for directions.

    How do teams work?

    There is a maximum of 4 people per team. Once the idea brainstorming session is done, there will be an open mic and networking time to find a team. Everyone registered will also be invited to the VolHacks Slack team prior to the hackathon in order to network and discuss ideas.

    Will you have a hardware lab?

    Yes! VolHacks is not just software! The Hardware Lab is an area where you can borrow hardware you need to create your hack, using your government issued ID. Feel free to bring your own hardware or send suggestions on what feel you would like to use. You can review a list of hardware lab here.

    Is there a code of conduct?

    Yes, we abide by the Major League Hacking Code of Conduct.

    Do I need to stay the entire time?

    Nope, we are not a lock-in. We realize that 36 hours is a long time, and that some people might have other commitments during that time. Feel free to stay and leave as you choose.

    Where do I park?

    Free parking is available in the 11th Street Parking Garage, right across the street from Min Kao.

    I've never been to a hackathon before, what should I do?

    No worries at all. We will be providing mentors during the hackathon and running workshops, as well as providing food and drinks and a place to sleep if you don't have one. We will also have a Slack team for anyone to get help at during the hackathon. You don't need to be good at writing code or building things, this is a learning experience and chance to have fun above everything else!

    What should I bring?

    You will definitely need your laptop, phone, their chargers, as well as a valid government issued ID. Feel free to also bring along a sleeping bag, and we recommend some comfortable clothes.

    What kind of things can we hack up? Are there any limits?

    You are not limited to what you can make, hack, or build for the hackathon except for the following restrictions:

    • It cannot be illegal in any way
    • It cannot go against the MLH code of conduct
    • It cannot compromise the integrity of the UTK networks, resources, faculty, or staff
    • It cannot go against the UTK code of student conduct (find that here)

    I don't know what to build — any ideas?

    Don't worry at all! We will walk you through how to brainstorm great ideas at the beginning of VolHacks.

    Reach out!

    Feel free to email us about the event, sponsoring us, partnering with us, or with any other questions!

    Where is the Event?

    VolHacks will take place in the Min Kao EECS building on UT's campus:

    1520 Middle Dr, Knoxville, TN 37996

    You can park in the 11th Street Parking Garage right across the street for free.