[development] Summer of Code: Call for mentors/help

Angela Byron drupal-devel at webchick.net
Thu Feb 22 14:11:22 UTC 2007

It's that time of year again!

Google's Summer of Code program is happening again this year, and a  
few of us are actively working on getting our preliminary stuff  
together to make this a huge success.

Like last year, our goal is to have 2 mentors available per student.  
This has the following advantages:
- People can take vacations without leaving the student "stranded"  
for a week.
- If you don't know the answer to something, chances are your counter- 
part will.
- It eases the time burden on both mentors because it's split between  
two people.
- Students always have someone to turn to for help.
- It shows Google that we're very committed to student success.

However, there are currently only 25 mentors signed up to the SoC  
mentors group: http://groups.drupal.org/soc-2007-mentors. That means  
we could only handle a maximum of 12 students, which is fewer than  
last year. :( And that assumes that everyone in the group is able to  
be a mentor for whatever projects end up getting accepted. Ideally,  
I'd love to see this number up around 50, with a diverse range of  
skills, backgrounds, and experiences so we have all of our bases  

So please, if you have knowledge in a particular area of Drupal (such  
as image/file handling), a particular skillset (AJAX was really hot  
last year, for example), feel comfortable enough to be a "backup"  
mentor, or just plain want to help students succeed, *please* sign up  
for the group and help us out! You can request a subscription here:  
http://groups.drupal.org/og/subscribe/2741 ... in "Additional  
details" please specify what your area of expertise is, what project  
proposals (if any) you see yourself being able to mentor, and whether  
you think you have time to be a primary or secondary mentor.

Now. What if you don't see yourself able to act in a 'mentor'  
capacity, but still want to help? For example, you're a Drupal  
developer just kind of getting your feet wet, or you're experienced  
with Drupal but waaayyyy too busy to take on mentoring duties. Great  
news, you can still help! :)

a) The Drupal Dojo folks are actively working on a "Getting started  
with Drupal development" guide, which will help new SoC students (and  
all other developers new to the project) become acquainted with  
Drupal and its architecture more quickly. You can help with that over  
here: http://docs.drupaldojo.org/getting-started-with-drupal- 
development - this is something that new developers in particular can  
be extremely helpful in, because you guys know best what tripped you  
up as you were learning, and can read the resulting text to determine  
if it's still confusing.

b) We still need A LOT of help creating decent project proposals:  
http://drupal.org/node/110704. Proposals need to be:
- properly defined, including a list of deliverables. See for example  
- realistically scoped, so that they can be completed in 3 months by  
someone who might know nothing about Drupal. See http://drupal.org/ 
- do-able by a student. This means no crazy stuff like "Security  
audit all of core and contrib" or "rewrite the entire file API."
- interesting and beneficial to students... we don't want them doing  
"grunt work" if at all possible... mention career and academic  
benefits outside of Drupal that the student will gain for working on  
the project.
- have some kind of code as a deliverable. We can't have proposals  
that are about just creating documentation or researching into a  
certain thing.

Providing you can spec your project idea out within these parameters,  
this is a big chance to get someone interested in whatever personal  
Drupal itch you have to scratch.

Sorry, that got really long. :P In summary:

- We need help with Summer of Code!
- If you know a lot about something, please sign up to be a mentor:  
- If you have great ideas, please write a good project proposal:  
- If you are a good teacher or a newbie, please help with writing  
beginner docs for developers: http://docs.drupaldojo.org/getting- 

Also if possible, be relatively quick about it. ;) I'd like to have  
all of our mentor names and most of our project proposals nailed down  
by March 1.


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