Create innovative hardware + software projects with Holiday-fy

Use Your Creativity to Build Projects That Benefit the World!

What is Holiday-fy?

Holiday-fy is a hackathon-research program run by Mathisi-fy, a 501(c)(3) student-lead non-profit organization where we provide passionate students with an opportunity to learn the ropes of computer science/engineering by enabling them to start their own hands-on projects while mentoring them on their journey. We aim to host an all-inclusive event that allows students to express their creativity and eliminate the social and economic obstacles surrounding programming and STEM. There will be prizes, free swag, and awesome tech speakers from the industry! The Holiday-fy event will run from November to January

Participants who are unable to financially fund their projects have the opportunity to apply for a grant, where they can receive the necessary funding for hardware + software components for their innovations.

At Holiday-fy, we strive to solve most pressing issues in our local communities. This year, Holiday-fy will focus on tackling two tracks...

AI for Community Enhancement

Harnessing the power of artificial intelligence, how can we utilize AI technologies to enhance our local communities? What innovative AI-driven solutions can improve areas such as healthcare, education, transportation, and more? Create a hardware + software project that leverages AI to bring about positive changes in your local community.


Billions of accounts are hacked each year due to the lack of cybersecurity in our everyday lives. How can we support our local communities by securing our school, business and recreational networks? How can we increase our online cybersecurity presence through hardware and software? Innovate a hardware + software project that makes the cyber-world a safer place


How It Works

1) Register/Apply

  • Fill out the registration or grant form. On the grant form, You will answer questions about your project and your interests in technology
  • Once you've completed the written application on the grant form, we will schedule an interview to get to know you better!

2) Create/Construct

  • During this phase, you may start creating your hardware + software project
  • You can take inspiration from our two pathways: the cybersecurity track and the local COVID-19 community track. However, you may choose to create a project outside of these two fields

3) Analyze/Revise

  • Once you have completed the first drafts of your projects, mentors will be available to assist and support you on your journey
  • This is the phase where you can ask questions, explore your project vision, prepare for the presentation, and improve your innovation

4) Present/Publish!

  • Publish and present your project to our team and a panel of sponsors. Demonstrate your innovation's functionalities and your design process
  • The panel will judge and provide constructive feedback about your innovation. Through the presentation, you will have a chance to win awesome prizes!


Swag, Tech, and More!

Overall Grand Prize

Best AI Community Hack

Best CyberSecurity Hack

Best Beginner Hack

Hardware Hack 1st Place

Best All-Female Hack

Free T-Shirts + Stickers for all

And Many More to Be Announced!



Jessy Gonzalez

Founder @ Cyber Strategy Advisors, Program Manager @ MalwareBytes

  • CompTIA Excellence in Professional Development Award - Computing Technology Industry Association
  • Certified in Risk and Information System Controls (CRISC) - ISACA

Jessy has been a nonprofit and business executive for 20 years, with international certifications in information security management, systems engineering, and project management. He is recognized nationally as a subject-matter expert, developer, public speaker, and presenter of award-winning social enterprise business models and community technology education programs. Mr.Gonzalez currently leads IT, Information Security, and Data Privacy compliance PMO operations at Malwarebytes, the industry's leading cybersecurity company that protects millions of consumer and business customers worldwide. Jessy will be speaking about Privacy & Security by Design (PbD) in relation to our cybersecurity category

Johan Surtihadi

Director of BioStatistics @ Illumina

  • Bachelor's Degree in Electrical Engineering, phD in Statistics @ Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
  • Diverse experience in IVD and personalized diagnostic tests for oncology, infectious disease, and virology
  • Extensive knowledge of clinical, medical, and regulatory aspects of diagnostic product development and clinical/analytical validation

At Illumina, Johan leads biostatistics activities in clinical development and validation of IVD companion diagnostics for oncology based on NGS technology. He also manages product development, validation, and clinical trials for diagnostic tests based on molecular, gene expression, genomic, and NGS methods while collaborating with pharmaceutical partners in pharma/diagnostic co-development. Mr.Surtihadi will be speaking to us about COVID-19 diagnostic tests/validation as related to our hackathon category


The Mathisi-fy Leadership Team

Winston Iskandar

Co-Founder, Executive Director

Dylan Iskandar

Co-Founder, Operations

Pratish Rai

Vice President of Workshops

Chimdi Jane Samuel

Mathisi-fy Nigeria, Secretary

William Zhang

Head of Operations

Audrey Lee

Vice President of Outreach, Author

Jeremiah Jacob

Mathisi-fy Nigeria, Author

Emily Doami

Girls Advancing Leadership in STEM Rep.

David Tembo

Mathisi-fy Zambia, Outreach

Mark Musisha

Mathisi-fy Zambia, Community Lead

Jackson Mwanaumo

Mathisi-fy Zambia, Info. Technologies

Mwansa Mwansa

Mathisi-fy Zambia, Author

Isamar Zhu

Communications, Author

Abubakar Haruna

Mathisi-fy Nigeria, Community

Jada Yip

Graphic Design and Marketing

Lembani Sakala

Mathisi-fy Zambia, Networking


Frequently Asked Questions

  • When will Holiday-fy run, and who can participate?

    The Holiday-fy event will run from November 2023 to January 2024. ALL students (middle school - university) are welcome to attend. If you are older or younger and still want to participate as a maker, shoot us an email. If you're older, we welcome you to sign-up as a mentor/volunteer!

  • Yes! You may participate and still engage in the full Holiday-fy experience even if you are not a grant recipient. Holiday-fy offers participants grants only if they are unable to financially fund their project independently.

  • You can apply for a grant here: ( The application will ask you about your project's logistics (how you plan to create it, what you plan to create etc..). Make us as excited about your project as you are!

  • Once you have completed the application process, we will schedule a Zoom/phone interview with you to learn more about you and your project. Once you're project is approved, we will provide the funding and reimburse you for the necessary hardware + software parts.

  • Your team can have up to 4️ people! You can select teammates when you register, or you can register individually without specified teammates. If you don’t have a team now, that’s okay ! We’ll have team formation and ideation events geared towards helping you find people to work with.

  • You'll have the opportunity to submit your project to 1️ (and only one!) of our tracks, making you eligible for that track prize! During our event, we'll also be providing each track with its own set of ideation resources. You're not required to submit your hack to a track, but you will need to in order to be considered for our track prizes. Tracks are meant to enhance the Holiday-fy experience, but if there truly isn't a track for you, don't worry! Projects submitted without a track are still eligible for sponsor challenges and Holiday-fy Grand Prizes 🏆.

  • Right here! Code of Conduct Link

  • Please email [email protected] if you have any questions or concerns! We'd love to hear from you.


Contact Us


+1 (310)-906-0594‬