Killer Job Opportunity - GM HackNY

Of all the many terrific programs in the NYC startup sector, the one that excites me the most is HackNY. Started by Evan Korth of NYU and Chris Wiggins of Columbia, HackNY brings the top students from the top CS programs around the country to NYC for the summer to work (and play) in the NYC startup community. You might say "yet another internship program" and you would be wrong about that. HackNY is an internship program, it is a series of hackathons, it is a marketing program for NYC's tech scene, and it is becoming a community of young talented software engineers who want to live and work in NYC.

HackNY has grown up fast. It started with a dozen interns a few summers ago and this summer 35 interns are completing the program and heading back to school. Next year will likely be bigger. Evan and Chris have full time jobs teaching at NYU and Columbia and they need some help. So they are hiring a GM.

This is one of those jobs, like running the NYC Tech Meetup, or running Techstars NYC, that can put someone on the map. It is a job, like the ones I mentioned, that is at the epicenter of everything that makes the NYC startup community work. This is not a job for someone looking to make a lot of money. This is a job for someone looking to make a lot of great things happen.

If that describes you, if you are comfortable with hackers and working with the professors and students of top CS schools, and most of all, if you are organized and a "can do" person, then you should apply for this job. You can do so here.

#NYC#VC & Technology#Web/Tech

Comments (Archived):

  1. Dave W Baldwin

    Congratulations on the success and that is definately a great opportunity!

  2. Rohan

    Learning by doing. Nice.

  3. jarid

    You had me until the ‘not a lot of money’ part. ūüėČ

    1. fredwilson

      so true

      1. Brad

        Not a lot of money to Fred could be a lot of money to others…..

  4. Ciaran

    Possibly my least constructive comment here yet, but the name of this (HackNY) is one that, in my mind, I pronounce Hackney. And It’s a loooong way from Hackney.¬†…

  5. Ronnie Rendel

    Is there anyone that can help me bring the HackNY concept to a community level? ¬†Like I said before, I live in a Jewish orthodox community with some of the most brilliant minds in the world… along with staggering unemployment. ¬†We started an organization called Knowledge Works (now to teach skills to young men and women in the community. ¬†I have been looking to do “bootcamp” courses on coding, web media production, and marketing, and combine with hackathons.So far, over 100 students came through Geshem Center. ¬†If anyone from the AVC community wants to help me get this off the ground it might be the most meaningful thing they (we) have ever done. ¬†P.S. ¬†I know there are more then a few hot startups hiding there too. ¬†

    1. Dave Pinsen

      Is the “staggering unemployment” due to a preference for religious studies over work? And if so, how would “teaching skills” make much of a difference?¬†

      1. Ronnie Rendel

        Good question. ¬†Because¬†they study in (tremendously rigorous) Talmudic seminaries, they don’t get a formal college education which makes it difficult to join the¬†corporate¬†world. ¬†But the powerful logic and oratory skills attained there makes them top programmers and analysts. ¬†This is exactly where this opportunity is so sweet.On a different note, I’m a little disappointed that from the huge (and very creative) community on¬†AVC noone else commented on this idea. ¬†I’m wondering if it was too vague or too lofty. ¬†I meant it very seriously.

        1. ShanaC

          I’m formerly orthodox, with close and friendly ties to various members (in some cases prominent members) of the Orthodox community at large. I also googled you.A) You’re Yechi, and outside the pale of Jewish thought. ¬†Let’s pretend you weren’t though.B) I honestly don’t believe you about the rigor of Chabad Metsivas, especially the ones in Crown Heights. ¬†The reason I don’t believe you is I have multiple family members with Smicha and I also know people who went to Tomchei Temimim. ¬†The YU people actually have stricter smicha requirements, and every single one graduated college and at least started graduate school on top of the Smicha. ¬†I also know some JTS students who also are vastly more¬†rigorous¬†in their knowledge and approach compared to Chabad. ¬†Further, where I went to college was one of the few places in the country where you could get a degree in Aramaic (AB Level up to Phds and post-doc) ¬†Most of those students start reading biblical Hebrew and Aramaic at some point in college (or grad school in some cases), and are able to read and parse the Gemara in some ways better than a lot of the rabbinical¬†characters¬†that I know. ¬†Except for a few exceptions that I have met out of BMG, the vast majority of Jewish people can learn talmud, the shulchan aruch, tanach, whatever, while going to college, studying math and science in high school at least as¬†rigorously. ¬†Learning and having the ability to make a liening , partipating in Chidon Hatanach, what have you, from a young age doesn’t require the ocd time¬†commitment¬†that would prevent people from going to college relatively on time.C) I’ve learned Gemara back in my orthodox days (and I know factually that some of left learning memebers of Chabad are fine with that idea, if only because I know of Chabad Members who teach women gemara). ¬†I’m learning to program now. I found that the fact that I took calculus (which I need to review….) is helping far more than the fact that I can parse Bava Batra with a dictionary + Rashi by myself.D) On my job hunting travels at one point or another, I actually have run into people who own digital businesses out of both the Flatbush commu nity and Crown Heights. ¬†The lack of basic knowledge for some of these people in these businesses was a bit frightening, and would make me wary of recommending them as places to do business with. ¬†It appeared that the people who do really understand tend to go and join big corporations. ¬†That being said, I also know plenty of very creative and successful business people from frum communities who I would be very happy to tell people to do business with. ¬†(the vast majority of that group don’t have digital businesses though…)So if I lack passion, excuse me, I’ve seen enough to know this kind of program would be money down the drain. (The Ort program on the Mesivta level, otoh)A gut shabbos and a ketivah v’chatimah tovah.

        2. ShanaC

          Last thought:It is halachically neglegent to not teach your child a trade (or give them the ability to learn a trade) ¬†Putting a kid in a situation where he only learns would be halachically impermissible. ¬†It creates situations where not only do these people depend on the welfare of the community at large, it creates men who are in violation of their wives’ ketubahs….

      2. ShanaC

        To be totally fair, even though I was more than ¬†a little pissed off myself…A) The vast majority of orthodox jews in this country are either modern, centerist, or left wing chareidi of all stripes, all of whom beleive in getting at a minimum a high school diploma, and the vast majority will also get college diplomas, and often will get graduate degrees as well. ¬†I went to a fairly typical orthodox high school in New York. ¬†Of the 128 students that I graduated high school with, 127 started college, and although I am not checking up on everyone, I believe either all or almost all of them graduated. ¬†Many are in graduate school as well, or have already completed graduate school. The vast majority are on various parts of the orthodox spectrum as well.B)Even though this particular guy is technically beyond the pale of Judaism, most of Chabad isn’t. ¬†And most of those who aren’t beyond the pale, especailly those people in NY who are Chabad returnees/their children or those outside of Crown heights, their kids graduate in state compliance and large chunks go onto college. ¬†It is usually other chassidic groups, such as Satmar, Bobov, etc or right wing chareidi Lithuanians, that don’t. ¬†And even though there is intense poverty in these groups, all except the Lithuanians try to have their kids learn a craft or trade or make their kids teach to earn (some sort of) living. ¬†And even the Lithuanians at some point want their kids to do something.If this bothers you as much as it sounds, donating to Footsteps ( would be an interesting idea, since they help people who want to leave, leave. ¬†(also, chareidi means ultra orthodox)

  6. andyswan

    11 years ago this week I had no idea what the hell I was going to do with my life. ¬†I had just moved to a big city to chase an opportunity that I didn’t even think I wanted. ¬†If anyone under 30 is wanting this GM job but scared to uproot and go there….I encourage you to get on a plane and trust your future self.Sometimes idiotic moves are the beginning of something great:

    1. Caesar

      Odd comment. Do you somehow think life change and self reinvention is not possible after the age of 30? If so, you would do well to study the history of innovation.

      1. Dave Pinsen

        Realistically, the older you get, the harder it is. You might have young kids, or elderly parents to take care of. Also, for a job like this, if you’re beyond a certain age they probably wouldn’t even consider you.

  7. ErikSchwartz

    The hard part of this job is not quitting every 6 months and joining a team turning a cool hack into a company.

    1. fredwilson

      i suspect HackNY would be happy to take that risk

  8. falicon

    Love HackNY as well…sad you didn’t mention Hilary Mason though (she’s also been a huge part of the success and getting the program off the ground) ūüėČ

    1. fredwilson

      my bad. Hillary is great

  9. Ryan

    I think this could be good for a new VC firm or PE firm to send a young partner to do this job and then start getting looks from NYC startups. Sometimes when the fast deals happen only the top-tier firms are getting offers to participate and all the money doesn’t get a fair shot.

    1. Gary Chou

      I would worry a little bit about that. ¬†What Chris and Evan have consistently done is place the needs and interests of the students above all others. ¬†I think that’s one of the keys to making the program work.

  10. Steve Hallock

    ah all the fun stuff is in NY now days…

    1. fredwilson

      well, at least a lot of fun stuff

  11. Yuriy Blokhin

    Fred, can you please make a post on what makes for a killer hackathon event in your opinion and based on your experience? I am currently organizing our first one in Waterloo and would love to hear your take on this. Thanks in any case! ūüôā

    1. fredwilson

      lots of talented devs and some sort of organizing theme

  12. Ryan

    NYC is really coming up in the tech/startup scene

  13. Ryan S

    NYC is really making a run at the tech/startup scene.

  14. Carl J. Mistlebauer

    If I had the slightest clue about this job and possibly some charm I would jump on this opportunity in a heartbeat! ¬†Nothing like a job that would be an adventure…..



    1. RichardF

      did you accidentally insert an N there Grimlock?

  16. tyfyua

    Very good! Thank you!

  17. Volnado

    Great of you to post this it shadows how much other local scenes have working for them and just another reason startups should develop hacker hubs in nyc.