Emoti-Con! 2014

On June 14, 2014 at The New York Public Library/Bartos Forum, over 150 New York City youth from across the five boroughs will gather at the 6th annual Emoti-Con! to showcase their digital media and technology projects, be inspired by their peers, and meet with professionals in the field. 

At Emoti-Con!, youth will: Network with peers and learn about other exciting informal learning opportunities across the city; present their projects, get inspired by others, and network with industry professionals; take part in fun design challenges; hear from amazing Emoti-Con! Keynotes - professional game designers, makers and social entrepreneurs from all corners of the media and technology industry; participate in the Emoti-Con! Challenge, which awards prizes in multiple categories including Most Innovative, Most Potential for Social Impact, Most Entertaining and Best Pitch; and have a chance to earn digital badges, and valuable feedback on their work!

Find answers to common questions about Emoti-Con! on our FACEBOOK FAQ >


Badges for Emoti-Con! reflect peer-issued awards to competing projects and are issued by participating institutions (that's you!) through Emoti-Con.org. If your institution is registered to participate, and were signed in at registration on the day of the event, chaperones will be emailed a single login for your group. Once logged in, you can award and manage badges for your presenters. We hope it makes you... :)

Emoti-Con Badges

*2013 Badge Categories

Judges & Keynotes

  • Momo Akade, Gigabryte

    Momo Akade, Gigabryte

    A former teacher and lifelong maker, Momo is the founder of Gigabryte. Akade created GigaBryte to help close the racial and ethnic divide in the field of computing. GigaBryte is a learning platform that introduces elementary school children to programming through wearable electronics. GigaBryte originated as Akade’s thesis while she was a graduate student in the Learning, Design, and Technology program at Stanford University. Akade has since introduced hundreds of kids (and kids at heart) to programming in the Bay Area through workshops at partner schools and science and technology museums. She is an alumna of the Imagine K12 and StartX accelerator programs in Silicon Valley, and earned her BA at Yale University. Currently, she is an Open Society Foundations Black Male Achievement Fellow powered by Echoing Green.

  • David Albert, Hacker School

    David Albert, Hacker School

    Dave is one of the founders of Hacker School, a three month long writers retreat for computer programmers of all skill levels in New York City. Hacker School has no grades, degrees, classes or fixed curriculum and is built on the idea that people learn best when they are given the freedom to explore their interests and are able to take responsibility for their own education. Dave is an alumni of Y Combinator and has a degree in Computer Engineering from Columbia University. He absolutely loves programming.

  • Brian Alspach, E Line Media

    Brian Alspach, E Line Media

    Brian is Executive Vice President at E-Line Media, a publisher of game-based learning products and services that engage, educate and empower, helping to prepare youth for lives and careers in the 21st Century. He leads E-Line’s youth gamemaking efforts including Gamestar Mechanic – an online platform that teaches game design and has been used by over 300,000 youth in over 5,000 schools – and the National STEM Video Game Challenge – a multi-year competition that encourages young people to design video games to build a motivation for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math.

  • Matthew Burnett, Maker's Row

    Matthew Burnett, Maker's Row

    Matthew Burnett is a Detroit native whose grandfather inspired his interest in manufacturing, as he was a watchmaker by trade. Matthew received a BFA in industrial design from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York in 2007. He began his professional career designing watches for Marc Jacobs, DKNY, and Diesel. After working in the watch industry, he decided to start his own line, Steel Cake, having watches made overseas. Though previously designing and overseeing production for big brands, he found that manufacturing as an independent brand overseas would be a much different experience. Extended turnaround periods, language barriers, and continuous manufacturing errors brought the Steel Cake Watch line to a close. In 2010, Burnett decided to start a line of leather goods (The Brooklyn Bakery) using domestic manufacturers in order to maintain control over the quality of production and form closer relationships with the suppliers and contractors. In 2011 Burnett partnered with Tanya Menendez on The Brooklyn Bakery to manage sales and operations. After pairing with Burnett on the accessories brand, Menendez suggested that they develop a resource that would assist designers in finding American manufacturers. With Burnett’s background in manufacturing and Menendez’s experience with operations, they began to develop the blueprint for what is today, Maker’s Row.

  • Erin Durkin, New York Daily News

    Erin Durkin, New York Daily News

    Erin is a City Hall reporter at the New York Daily News, covering the mayoral election and city government. Before moving to City Hall, she worked in the paper's Brooklyn bureau, covering urban development and neighborhood issues. She graduated from Columbia University, where she studied political science and was an editor for the Columbia Daily Spectator.

  • Dana Edell, SPARK Movement

    Dana Edell, SPARK Movement

    Dana Edell, PhD is an activist-scholar-artist and serves as Executive Director of SPARK Movement, an international, intergenerational girls’ activist movement working to end the sexualization of girls. She is also the co-chair of the Girls Participation Task Force of the Working Group on Girls at the United Nations. From 2002-2012, she was co-founder/executive director of viBe Theater Experience where she produced and co-directed more than 60 productions all written/performed by girls. Dana teaches arts, education and activism at CUNY and NYU and has 15+ years of experience as an educator and leader in arts, activism and advocacy programs with girls.

  • Anne Gaines, Parsons The New School for Design

    Anne Gaines, Parsons The New School for Design

    Anne Gaines, Dean for the School of Art, Media, and Technology, artist and educator, fosters a strong, collaborative academic culture within a large and complex school at Parsons which serves nine programs and over 1300 graduate and undergraduate students. During her experience overseeing art and design programs at Parsons, her focus is on building a strong, diverse community of students, faculty, staff and alumni and forging relationships with regional, national, and international partners. She has also worked to improve access to college for new and nontraditional student populations through her work with the Parsons Scholars program and the development of early college models.

  • Jessy Jo Gomez, Win to Learn // Parsons The New School for Design

    Jessy Jo Gomez, Win to Learn // Parsons The New School for Design

    Jessy Jo Gomez is currently a student attending Parsons The New School for Design on a full scholarship, majoring in Design & Technology (concentration: game design) and minoring in Japanese Studies. She has a year to go before she graduates. Jessy Jo is also the co-founder of Win to Learn, Inc., a company that aims to teach kids how to code through game design using programs like Scratch or Construct 2. She currently teaches 2 classes at 2 different schools, where her students refer to he as "Ms. Gamez". Jessy Jo also believes in using the power of games for not only education, but for social justice.

  • Kate Hannum, MakerBot Industries

    Kate Hannum, MakerBot Industries

    Kate Hannum works at MakerBot Industries in the role of Thingiverse Community Manager. With a background in teaching and social media, she's excited by the boundless enthusiasm of the 3D printing community and loves to do whatever she can to help them connect and make stuff on Thingiverse. She 3D prints stuff all day, every day.

  • Steven Hodas, NYC Department of Education

    Steven Hodas, NYC Department of Education

    While at NASA Steven Hodas built the U.S. government's first public website, connecting teachers and students with rich scientific resources, and launching his career as an edtech entrepreneur. He went on to create the web's most popular sites for high school and college students, the first online test preparation, and the first large-scale formative assessment platform for school districts. For the past five years he has worked closely with early-stage entrepreneurs, launched two companies of his own and recently joined the NYC DOE to head its Markets Initiative, which seeks to foster smart demand for innovative solutions to the most pressing problems in the nation's largest school district.

  • Mike Knowlton, StoryCode // Murmer

    Mike Knowlton, StoryCode // Murmer

    A digital veteran of 20 years, Mike Knowlton has always pushed the boundaries of storytelling and technology. As a Creative Technologist he founded and led numerous technology companies including user-interface design firm Nascent State, digital agency BASIK, and open-source Flash technology Frontal. Mike has led large multi-disciplinary teams in developing complex software applications for brands including Bath & Body Works, Epoch Films, Gucci, MoMA, New York Magazine, Philosophy, Theory, Tiffany & Co., and Victoria's Secret. At his most recent venture Murmur he produces social films and consults with leading brands, studios, and networks on using social films to extend existing properties. Mike's background spans design, programming, advertising, and filmmaking. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from Miami University.

  • Tanya Menendez, Maker's Row

    Tanya Menendez, Maker's Row

    Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area, Tanya studied technology and its socioeconomic impacts on rural economies at UCSD. Conducting a number of studies on financial technology advancements in Oaxaca, Mexico, she co-authored “The Economics of Migration”, published by the University of California. Shortly thereafter, Menendez joined the Google Strategy and Integration group advising on internal system operations. In 2011 Menendez partnered with Matthew Burnett on The Brooklyn Bakery to manage sales and operations. While at The Brooklyn Bakery, she came up with the idea to create a platform for entrepreneurs to be able to easily access American manufacturers. Combining her experience in operations / automation with Matthew’s experience in global manufacturing, they started Maker’s Row.

  • Jessica Millstone, Joan Ganz Cooney Center

    Jessica Millstone, Joan Ganz Cooney Center

    Jessica Millstone has nearly 20 years of experience working to improve teaching & learning for families and education professionals through the integration of innovative technologies. She currently researches how digital games impact learning for the Joan Ganz Cooney Center, an independent R+D center at Sesame Workshop, and is advising digital game developers on creating high-quality products for an educational audience. In collaboration with Common Sense Media, Jessica presents at schools and companies around New York City, advising parents on how to thoughtfully manage their family's use of media & technology at home.

  • Hank Williams, Kloudco

    Hank Williams, Kloudco

    Hank Williams is a technologist and serial entrepreneur who recently founded Platform, a non-profit organization with the mission to increase the interest, participation, and success of those underrepresented in the innovation economy. Hank also currently serves as CEO of Kloudco, a startup developing a new cloud information management platform for organizing and managing online communications. Earlier in his career Hank was Founder, Chairman, and CEO of ClickRadio, one of the Internet’s first interactive radio services. As lead architect, he conceived many of the concepts and technologies that underpin the current interactive music space. Before that, Hank served as President and CEO of Pastel Development Corporation, where he developed DayMaker, a best selling and award winning personal information management program.

  • Manoush Zomorodi, New Tech City // WNYC

    Manoush Zomorodi, New Tech City // WNYC

    Manoush is the host and managing editor of WNYC’s New Tech City, recently ranked the #1 weekly tech podcast. New Tech City is also a featured segment on Morning Edition, and explores innovation, creativity, technology and the new economy. A graduate of Georgetown University , Manoush has been a producer, correspondent and presenter for the BBC, a reporter and anchor for Thomson Reuters Television, and a media consultant to non-profits including the Council on Foreign Relations, Human Rights Watch and the Gates Foundation. She is also the author of Camera Ready: How to Present Your Best Self and Ideas On Air or Online, one of the top-selling journalism ebooks on Amazon.