Spark - Education Innovation Program - HackCville


HackCville’s Education Innovation Program

Spark is a 12-week program for students interested in the intersection of education and entrepreneurship, and how we can innovate toward the future of education. Learn more about Spark below, or learn more about all of HackCville’s programs here.

Spark is formerly known as Rethink.

Program Details

Spark students gain direct exposure to education innovation. All students get access to design thinking workshops, a personal mentor in the field, and hands-on projects through a partnership with local non-profit ReinventED Lab.

Spark guides students in thinking critically about and solving problems in education. Graduates of Spark have a comprehensive understanding of design thinking and are prepared for careers as innovative educators, education entrepreneurs, non-profit leaders, and education policymakers.

Spark meets Tuesdays from 6-7:30pm starting the week of February 5 at HackCville.

Spark is hosted in partnership with ReinventED Lab, a non-profit committed to building the future of education in Charlottesville.

Meet the Program Leads

Keaton Wadzinski

Keaton Wadzinski is the instructor for Spark and the Executive Director of ReinventED Lab, the lead sponsor of Spark. Keaton is also a 4th Year studying Youth and Social Innovation at the Curry School of Education at UVA. Keaton has extensive experience in education innovation. He teaches entrepreneurship and design thinking at Albemarle County Schools and advises the Tom Tom Founders Festival on its education and innovation initiatives. Keaton graduated HackCville’s Hustle program in Fall 2015. You can reach him at

Abby Mainwaring

Abby Mainwaring is the program lead for Spark. She’s also a 3rd Year studying Youth & Social Innovation and Spanish. Abby graduated Spark in Spring 2016 and now leads the operations and community of Spark. You can reach her at

I love the energy and creativity that HackCville members have. Everybody seems motivated to make a difference in their community, and they all seem to have fun doing it. The atmosphere is both more relaxed and more energized than a typical classroom environment.”

– Audrey Francis, HackCville Member, Spark Program Graduate

HackCville Membership Perks

After you complete your first HackCville program, you're granted HackCville membership. Here's what you get:

24/7 access to our fun and functional clubhouses on Elliewood Ave. Our two clubhouses are filled with hammocks, couches, whiteboards, and WiFi. Use our space to work on your projects, hold meetings, or just hang out.

Exclusive events and job opportunities. Whether it's drinks with the co-founder of Reddit or HackCville-only job opportunities, we give our members access to dozens of unique experiences every year.

A community that feels like family. You'll join HackCville's 200-member community of the most talented and badass people in Charlottesville.

Early access to HackCville programs, no application required. Want to take another program? As a member, you can just sign up - no application required. We open up spots to members before the public.

Here’s what’s included in every HackCville program.

1. Workshops

Each program cohort meets 1-2x each week at one of HackCville's clubhouses on Elliewood Avenue. You'll participate in fun, fast-paced workshops to teach you modern skills.

Along the way, you'll be become close with your peers. Many of our students end up starting projects together with the people they meet.

2. Projects

You'll work on several hands-on projects throughout the program to put what you're learning into action. This could be anything from a data visualization project to a mini-documentary to your own startup.

These make great resume-building and portfolio-building experiences, too.

3. Mentorship

HackCville pairs every student with a peer and/or alumni mentor to provide guidance and support as you work on your projects throughout the program.

Our team also meets with you several times one-on-one to ensure you're getting the most out of your program.

4. Trips

HackCville hosts immersive trips to cities across the country (New York, San Francisco, Baltimore, and more) to tour companies, meet alumni, and give students networking opportunities with industry leaders.

Trips are where you see how what you're learning is put into action in the real world.

Learn more about all of HackCville's programs.


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