For the last couple of weeks I've been helping behind the scenes with Imagine Cup North East. If you've never heard of the Imagine Cup it's an annual student competition run by Microsoft to build technology solutions to address real-world problems, and this year two great local organisations promoting digital industries, Codeworks and Sunderland Software City, have teamed up to run a regional heat.
This week students from Newcastle, Northumbria, Sunderland, Durham and Teesside universities and local colleges will be attending taster and information events (in Newcastle and Middlesbrough), where Microsoft's Ben Nunney will be on hand to discuss the finer points of the competiton.
The competition is a great opportunity for students to work on a project outside of their studies (looks good on the CV, etc) and it should be good fun too, with a 36 hour hack event later in the month. Of course there's also the possibility of a trip to the global finals in Australia to aim for too!
If you're a current student (or graduated in the last year) there's still time to get involved, and if you aren't eligible to take part, you should still be able to support the teams at a future NEBytes event. Head to the Imagine Cup North East site, the Facebook page, and follow @ImagineCupNE on Twitter to keep up with all the goings-on.