The GNOME Foundation is pleased to announce a new collaboration with the Mozilla Open Source Student Network (OSSN) on a pilot program that aims to bridge the divide between university students and Open Source Software projects.

This program seeks to identify and correct what have historically been the major barriers to engagement within the university student population. With this collaboration, we are building new ways for students to discover where opportunities and needs exist in the Open Source Software community, and to ease their path towards code contribution.

“With this opportunity, we hope to link students with Open Source projects, where they can gain real-world experience, and contribute to software that is used by millions of people worldwide. I’m very excited to support this program, and look forward to welcoming new contributors to the world of Open Source software,” said Neil McGovern, Executive Director of the GNOME Foundation.

From June to October 2018, the GNOME Foundation, as well as other partnering projects and organizations, will be providing university students with the opportunity to work with our experienced mentors to contribute their work to a variety of GNOME projects. At the same time, students will be growing their skills in C, Python, and JavaScript, while learning effective and efficient programming and collaborative conventions.

Furthermore, throughout the program students will be helping us glean important insights from their experiences, which will be used to refine and improve the experience of new contributors. As Christos Bacharakis, Project Manager Open Source Student Network, Mozilla, says: “With OSSN Mozilla is building a network that makes it easy for students to learn about and contribute to Open Source but also for us to understand the needs, challenges and maybe reservations of this next generation of open innovators. With a broad set of diverse and inspiring projects for students to contribute to, the GNOME Foundation ideally complements our initiative and we’re thrilled about this new collaboration.”

If you are a student interested in contributing your time and code to Open Source Software, we cordially invite you to join us! No prior experience is needed, just bring your excitement and passion and we’ll do the rest. Please sign up here.

If you are interested in knowing more about the approaches we are taking for this pilot project, please visit this page.