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From Ross Gardler <>
Subject Re: A student project
Date Tue, 13 Jul 2010 21:06:56 GMT
On 12/07/2010 16:20, Upayavira wrote:
> I am now working for Sourcesense UK, who have made contact with a
> prominent London based university. The university has a group of five or
> six third year computer science students (on a four year joint
> honours/masters course), and their tutor is looking for a project for
> them for the October-March timeframe.
> He wants it to be open source, and he wants it to be engaging with an
> existing community, rather than producing something self-contained.
> We have ideas about which communities to approach. As a part of my role
> at Sourcesense, I will be available to assist with this project -
> talking to the students directly, guiding them with how to engage well
> with the community, etc. However, as I am not a member of or committer
> on any of the projects that we are likely to approach, I will not be
> able to be a formal Mentor.
> Before sending my (already written) introductory mail to our chosen
> project(s), I wanted to see whether there was anything I should bear in
> mind when doing so.

Yes there is, thanks for checking with us.

I'm a part of an EU project that is going to bring anything from 20-200 
students from across Europe looking for mentors. This will happen in a 
similar timeframe (dates were set today at a meeting I was unable to 
attend, I should get the minutes soon).

I am keen to avoid making work for potential mentors. If we end up with 
the top end of that number coming it would create a great deal of 
traffic for the projects to have to cope with.

Therefore, I want to encourage projects to mark issues that are 
available for mentoring in their issue tracker, and then have the 
students write a GSoC style application so that potential mentors can 
quickly evaluate proposals.

In fact, there are already a load of issues marked up as such as a 
result of the way we did the GSoC issues. See [2]

I certainly want to avoid go back to the PMCs multiple times about 
overlapping processes. Perhaps we could announce both activities in a 
single announcement of new mentoring opportunities and you could follow 
that up quickly for your selected PMCs.

In terms of logistics of our programme, as with your work we will have a 
number of staff providing first line support in the first language of 
the students. We will have a lecturer and a teaching assistant for every 
20-30 students. It is hoped that this will take the load of the 
technical mentors in the projects themselves.

Exactly how this will all work out is still being defined. Once I have 
the minutes from this weeks project meetings, together with the report 
from my day job representative there (who is currently lurking on this 
list) we plan to start discussions here about how best to work with the 
ComDev project.

I think it would be wise for yourself and myself to work together, 
preferably here at comdev, to make sure that we are following the same 
processes and therefore minimising impact on the mentors here. When I 
talk here I am, as you would expect, representing my ASF interests. The 
day job project knows this and will be defined by what we decide here.

Do you have a timetable that you are working to? I don't yet, but will 
have once I have those reports.

> I did want to mention that your page [1] on mentoring in formal
> education was a very useful read. Do you, as yet, have any students
> following this process, or could this be the first?

No, this next run will be our first. I'm planning on expanding this 
documentation over the next few weeks.

> [1]

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