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CourseRoad, Dormbase win 2012 iCampus Student Prizes

CourseRoad named grand prize winner; Dormbase named runner-up
President Susan Hockfield and freshman Danny Ben-David, the 2012 iCampus Prize grand-prize winner.
President Susan Hockfield and freshman Danny Ben-David, the 2012 iCampus Prize grand-prize winner.
Photo: Anna Babbi Klein

The MIT Council for Educational Technology (MITCET) and the Office of Educational Technology and Innovation (OEIT) are pleased to announce CourseRoad as the grand-prize winner and Dormbase as the runner-up of the 2012 iCampus Student Prize competition. CourseRoad and Dormbase were recognized during the Institute's Awards Convocation ceremony on May 17.

CourseRoad and Dormbase emerged as the top projects from the final-round competition where the five finalists from the first-round competition were invited to present a poster and give a short presentation on their project. Judges from MIT and Microsoft evaluated the finalists in three areas: relevance to MIT, potential for impact, and design.

The judges thought CourseRoad could be a powerful tool for students and their advisors. The CourseRoad team consisted of freshman Danny Ben-David, who received the $6,000 grand prize. CourseRoad builds a user-friendly page where users can map out their classes through their undergraduate careers. CourseRoad presents the user with a vertical timeline of undergraduate semesters, and makes it easy to add, remove and drag classes between terms. The site then provides a web of prerequisite and co-requisite connections between the classes and visually alerts the user to any conflicts. OEIT will be working with Ben-David through the summer to further develop CourseRoad.

The judges recognized the potential Dormbase has to improve student-run dorm operations across the Institute. Dormbase is a web-based system that provides MIT dormitories with the tools and services they need for daily operation. It provides reliable, modern and user-friendly online services for residents, desk workers and student administrators. The Dormbase team consisted of sophomore Alex Chernyakhovsky, freshman Cosmos Darwin, juniors Drew Dennison amd Isaac Evans, and sophomore Luke O'Malley, who will split $4,000 as the runner-up.

The iCampus Student Prize was endowed by Microsoft Research to recognize the innovative and creative application of technology that improves living and learning at MIT. The competition builds upon the entrepreneurism and spirit of service exhibited by MIT students to solve the world's problems by focusing attention of what might be improved closer to home in MIT's education and student life.

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