FOSSASIA was thrilled to be selected once again as a mentor organisation of Google Code-In (GCI) 2015 – a contest to introduce pre-university students (ages 13-17) to open source software development. Together with 13 other orgs we reached out to 980 students from 65 countries completed a total number of 4,776 tasks. As a part of our participation, I got a chance to present FOSSASIA at the Grand Prize Winners trip.
- FOSSASIA Team, photo by Jeremy Allison
GCI 2015 Awards Ceremony
28 grand prize winners, their parents along with one mentor from each participating organisation were invited to a trip to the Bay Area as a reward to their hard work during the last GCI program. Students had a chance to meet with mentors and to interact with their fellow students from other projects, enjoyed a few days in San Francisco and received many cool gifts/swags from Google.
- Chris DiBona and Jason Wong, photo by Jeremy Allision
Chris DiBona – Director of Open Source at Google – a super busy man who was so kind to spend his morning personally congratulated each single student in front of his/her parent. I do believe enjoy what you are doing and get recognition for your work is the best gift ever and to be able to share it with your family is even better. Thanks Google for celebrating the open source culture.
Meet, learn and share
I was very impressed by the level of knowledge and abilities of all the 28 students. They are young, enthusiastic and inspiring. Thanks to all the parents for believing and supporting the kids in pursuing their open source journey.
- Group photo by Jeremy Allison
It was wonderful to meet our two FOSSASIA GCI students for the first time. Jason grew up in the States, seemed a bit reserved while Yathannsh from India was very outspoken. They both were very new to open source when they joined the program and now have become active contributors and very eager to learn more. Three of us had a team presentation on FOSSASIA labs and our achievement from GCI 2015. Jason expressed his wish to go on as a mentor for the next GCI.
- Jason and Yathannsh
I had several interesting conversations with the parents who finally understood why their kids were on the computers all the time. About 14% of the parents are working in IT and very aware of open technology. The rest was super excited to learn about various open source projects. Many said to me they would love to have their second son/daughter to join the program as well.
The mentor group had a few discussions on pros and cons, how to improve and maximize the outcome of the program, and ways to keep students engaging afterwards. I learned a lot from other orgs and also shared FOSSASIA workflow and guidelines with them. The 7 weeks of GCI was an amazing experience for me and my team. I must give our FOSSASIA mentors credit for their incredible efforts. It was truly a pleasure to work with Mario, Sean, Mohit, Praveen, Nikunj, Abhishek, Jigyasa, Dukeleto, Manan, Saptaks, Aruna, Rohit, Arnav, Diwanshi, Martin, Nicco, Sudheesh, Samarjeet, Harsh, Luther, Jung and many more.
- GCI 2015 – 14 Org Mentors, photo by Jeremy Allison
It was the best field trip ever! The program was carefully planned: Meeting with Google engineers, a tour of the Google campus, a day of sightseeing around San Francisco and much more.
I was my first time on a Segway and I loved it, so cool! Thanks Stephanie for encouraging me to try this. It is never too late to learn something.
- Segway by the bay
Afternoon walk over the Golden Gate Bridge
Sanya and I could have completed the entire bridge but.. because of our slow male mentors we only made it halfway through. To all my geek friends out there – Please do more exercises!
- On Golden Gate Bridge
- Walking on the bridge, photo by Florian Schmidt
Yacht Dinner Cruise
This was the highlight for many of us: sailing along the bay, relaxing time on the water, beautiful landscape, nice chats and yummy food.
- Photo by Jeremy Allison
- Ladies pose, photo by Jeremy Allison
- with Cat Allman, photo by Jeremy Allison
Thank you organisers!
We just couldn’t thank Stephanie enough for her hard work and the extreme energy not only to GCI but also to the whole open source community and especially her care for us all during our trip. I was amazed by the level of details that been brought in: additional medication, sunscreen, chocolate tips, gift card, travel guide, luggage storage, special diet etc.
- Stephanie Taylor, GCI program manager, photo by Jeremy Allison
Last but not least thank to the lovely Mary, kind Helen, cool Eric, friendly Josh, awesome photographer Jeremy and of course my favorite Cat Allman for another unforgettable experience!
Google Code-In: developers.google.com/open-source/gci/
Google Summer of Code: developers.google.com/open-source/gsoc/
FOSSASIA Labs: http://labs.fossasia.org/