JumboCode was recognized by Tufts Community Union (TCU) Judiciary on Oct. 2 as one of the official new student groups on campus, according to TCU Judiciary Chair Anna Weissman. The group, which began last fall, provides students interested in computer science with an opportunity to help non-profit organizations in the local community and greater Boston area with software development, JumboCode President Daniel Baigel said.
Weissman, a senior, said TCU chose to recognize JumboCode not only because it fulfilled the necessary requirements of recognition, but also because of its positive future prospectus.
“They had a path for sustainability, they had an incredible gender breakdown in comparison to the computer science department itself and they have great backing from the computer science department, showing credibility,” Weissman told the Daily in an email.
Baigel, a senior, said TCU recognition helps JumboCode accomplish its goals with its nonprofit clients and fully take advantage of Tufts’ resources while creating a larger presence on campus.
“First and foremost, being an official Tufts organization gives us more credibility with clients and allows us to create partnerships more efficiently,” Baigel told the Daily in an email. “Next, we need to make contracts with clients, and being a Tufts group gives us the legal backing from Tufts that we need.”
Since the group’s inception last year JumboCode has worked on nine different projects for nonprofit organizations, according to project manager Becky Cutler. The group completed projects for five organizations last year and is continuing work on the remaining four projects this semester, Cutler, a senior, said.
Meanwhile, Cutler said, JumboCode is engaging with new organizations to broaden its impact in the community.
Yuki Zaninovich, project lead of JumboCode’s partnership with the Boston Athletic Association, said working on a project provides club members with hands-on experience in the world of software development.
“It really gives you a good emulation of what it’s like to work at a company,” Zaninovich, a junior, said.
Going forward, the club is beginning to move beyond its computer science emphasis in an attempt to incorporate other disciplines into the organization, according to Operations Manager Kabir Singh.
“When we started, we were focusing on computer science majors, but as we’re learning, design is a large aspect of creating these projects, so we’re trying to get more human-computer interaction and arts majors involved in the process,” Singh, a senior, said.
Furthermore, according to Baigel, the club is already looking to the future, trying to find a new executive board to take the lead and trying to expand JumboCode to other schools.
Project Manager Brett Fouss said the club benefits both the community and Tufts students.
“We see this as a win-win situation. Many of the younger, less experienced computer science students get valuable practical experience working on software projects while the clients get free software development, which is really obviously impossible to come by these days,” Fouss, a senior, said.
Fouss said that as the club grows, it will stay true to its central mission.
“We want JumboCode to serve as a reminder that it is what the technology is for, not the technology itself, that is important,” he said.