Hi all! Victor and me are having a good time at this year's GSoC Mentor Summit in Munich, and it's time to get out a first report. Again, I'm getting the impression that all projects here pretty much share the same problems and ReactOS is not doing anything particular wrong. Today, I have attended a session about keeping students involved after GSoC. Most projects are struggling with that and there were some projects where it's usual for all students to just stay for GSoC and immediately leave afterwards.
Anyway, I took some insights where we can improve to keep more of our students: * Give students some responsibility early on, so they feel responsible and needed for a project even after GSoC. The ultimate goal should be to turn them into mentors later. We already have a fairly good track record of that, but I think it should be emphasized here. * Invite more students to our Hackfest. We may need to postpone it by a few weeks to not clash with the final days of GSoC. For the MacPorts project, this resulted in all 3 students staying with the project after GSoC. * Talk to students on a personal level (possibly even through audio or video chat) and get them into our community. We had some high-performing students in the past who needed almost no mentoring, but this also resulted in less interactions with the community and we had a hard time to keep them involved after GSoC. * Collect tasks all year long, not just shortly before GSoC. This is important not just for keeping students, but also for enabling our paid development ideas around ReactOS. It's still important to ask a student what he or she wants to work on after GSoC, but we should always have some interesting tasks available. * Advertise our scholarship model early enough during GSoC to keep the people that are also doing it for the money. * Advertise our GSoC participation at universities. Some students managed to declare their GSoC participation as the technical internship required for their studies. All in all, the Mentor Summit again was a great opportunity to meet up with fellow Open-Source developers all around the world and have some interesting discussions. I'm already looking forward to the next one! We even got some ReactOS work done <https://github.com/reactos/reactos/pull/1835> just in sight distance of the Microsoft Germany HQ :D Cheers, Colin
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