A mentor is just a 💬 away.

Stuck on a bug? Need help setting up your environment? Use the MLH Mentor Matcher to find a mentor who can answer your questions & help you get back to hacking!

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Getting started is simple.

Just message the word "MENTOR" to +1 832-263-6867 to get started. The Mentor Matcher will collect some basic info about who you are and what event you're at.

Traveling internationally? Use an international number or the web form.

Sit back, relax, & wait for your mentor to arrive.

The Mentor Matcher will ask you some basic questions about what you need help with & send a request to the event's mentors using your responses.

Suddenly, a wild mentor appears to save the day!

Once you get matched with a mentor, you'll receive a notification that they are on the way to help get you back to hacking.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Have a question about the MLH Mentor Matcher? Here are the answers to some of the most common questions we hear.

What is the MLH Mentor Matcher?

The Mentor Matcher makes it easy for hackers to connect with mentors at hackathons via SMS or web form, powered by Twilio. Unlike other mentor systems, it enables IRL connections seamlessly.

Can I use it if there’s no phone reception or I’m traveling internationally?

Yes. After you login in above, simply select “I’m a hacker” after choosing your event. From there you’ll be able to access a web chat box where you can submit mentor requests without your phone.

Will I be charged for using it?

The MLH Mentor Matcher is free to use. Normal rates apply for SMS messages and phone calls.

Will you be adding other countries to the Mentor Matcher?

Yes. Currently the MLH Mentor Matcher is available in several countries and we’re adding more regularly.

What if I don’t see my event listed?

Your event hasn’t been created yet. Contact your MLH Coach or the local Hackathon Organizers and they can set it up for you.

Will mentors be able to see my phone number?

No. Your privacy is secure and all communication occurs via the MLH Mentor Matcher’s phone number thanks to Twilio.

Can I check the status of my ticket or cancel it?

Yes. Simply text the word “status” to the MLH Mentor Matcher. When your ticket is assigned to a mentor, you’ll be notified by SMS. To cancel a ticket, simply text the words “cancel ticket.” If you have any trouble finding your mentor, you can always call the number you texted your question to and you’ll be connected to them via a phone call.

What questions can I ask?

Anything from “Can’t figure out why I can’t find box collider anywhere in Unity.” to “I need help setting up my environment.” No problem is too big or too small.

How is this better than a #mentor Slack channel?

Slack is great for a quick question and crowdsourcing answers but it is more ephemeral, noisy, and not a traditional queue. It is not always evident whether a mentor has claimed a ticket and is on their way to support you. With the MLH Mentor Matcher, a support ticket is automatically created from your texts, greatly simplifying the process of escalating a chat conversation to a ticket. This makes it way easier for the right mentor to find you.

How is this better than simply walking up to a mentor and asking for help?

We’ve spoken to a lot of hackers over the past five years and we’ve heard that approaching a mentor can be intimidating. In addition, your mentor might not know the answer to your question and it’s not always clear who the mentors are, sometimes they look like hackers.

Who are the mentors?

The mentors are volunteers who are excited to help hackers build cool stuff. Many of them work for the companies that are sponsoring the hackathon, but some are just local developers, entrepreneurs, or designers who wanted to help out.

How can I become a mentor?

Anyone can sign up to be a mentor at a hackathon. To become a mentor on the MLH Mentor Matcher, just sign up and select “I’m a mentor” after choosing your event.

What is Twilio?

Twilio is a cloud communications platform. It allows software developers to programmatically make and receive phone calls, send and receive text messages, and perform other communication functions using its web service APIs. If you want to try using Twilio in your own project, text the word “TWILIO” to the MLH Mentor Matcher for a secret code!

Why is Twilio sponsoring this?

Our friends at Twilio love helping hackers and they sponsored the MLH Mentor Matcher because they saw an opportunity to help MLH empower hackers in a new and exciting way.

 

Have a different question?

Don't worry! We're here to help. Just send an email with your questions to [email protected] and we'll get back to you within 2 - 3 business days.