Your Summer of Code

Posted on by Laura

Categories: blog and tips and tricks

We love it when people contribute to Open Source, and hopefully someday there will be no need for a “Rails Girls Summer of Code”, or similar programs, to make that happen. With that in mind, the fact that your team was not selected for this year’s Rails Girls Summer of Code doesn’t mean that you can’t have your own Summer of Code! And it certainly shouldn’t stop you from contributing to the project you had chosen (or to any other one, really).

Take a look at platforms such as Open Hatch, Code Montage and Code Triage, which list Open Source Projects actively looking for more contributors. Take some time to familiarize yourself with the code of a couple of projects there, and then ask if you can contribute. See if your coaches are still able to help you, and maybe check if a coaching company or local co-working space is able to host you for the 3-month period.

Dear (coaching) companies - you should definitely take up this opportunity and offer internships or other possibilities to these awesome, motivated women!

Whichever way you decide to work, make sure you find a safe environment for yourself and your team mate, and that you set up a professional relationship with everyone on your team. We can only recommend having a Code of Conduct; here is ours, if you need inspiration. You can invest as much time into your project as you have available this summer (or winter, if you’re in the Southern Hemisphere!), and it might be a good base to apply again next year. You could also get in touch with the project maintainer of the project you applied with and see if they are able to take on one more team – but be aware they might be quite busy with their RGSoC team already.

If you’re a beginner at the language of the project you’ve chosen, you can give yourself time to learn the basics at your own pace until the program starts – or, take the first couple of weeks to get learning before you make your very first contribution. Either way, we suggest you talk to the project maintainers at some point before the summer to figure out if there are some beginner-friendly issues you can help out with. Trust us, a lot of maintainers really appreciate having newcomers around, and they’ll be happy to point you in the right direction.

We’ll try to give you appropriate support – unfortunately we cannot be there for everyone, which is why we cannot take on an unlimited amount of volunteer teams, but we’re hoping to provide guidance when needed and a dedicated communication channel where you can chat with the community.

Start contributing to Open Source and make this summer your Summer of Code! <3