I stumbled across Outreachy years ago when it was still known as Outreach program for women. It seemed like a dream come true to me, an open-source aficionado and a long-time Linux user; working with and contributing to an open-source community, learning something new, being mentored and getting paid for it! Since then, I have been regularly checking news, updates, and internship rounds, but never got to actually applying.

I recently made a decision regarding my job and my career in general, which meant that I had the perfect opportunity to participate in the December-March round of Outreachy internships. I've been eyeing projects since they had been posted, and as the application deadline was getting closer, it was time to take action.

The objectives I set myself were:

  1. pick a project
  2. get a task
  3. make a contribution
  4. complete and submit the application

Outreachy website contains all the information you need - timeline, projects descriptions along with their mentors' contacts and required skills, as well as application how-to, deadlines, etc. The whole process and the instructions are very straightforward and I had no difficulties following the steps to finalize my application.

The hardest thing was probably picking a project since there were a plethora of options. As a developer who wants to further improve and expand her programming skills, I first limited myself to the ones with programming as the main activity, then noted the details, required/preferred languages and other information. After checking their wiki pages, GitLab and open issues, I decided for GNOME. I contacted the mentor listed for the two projects I was weighing - and hoped that the competition was not too fierce :).

The mentor was great; he guided me through the task step by step, answering my questions (thank you again, danigm!), and soon I made my first contribution to gtranslator! I was very excited and couldn't wait to continue working on this app.

I was accepted as one of the interns and am thrilled to be working with GNOME which has been my home desktop environment for a long time now. My project is initial integration of gtranslator and Damned Lies, and I'll be using GObject, Gtk+, Python and Django to achieve that. These are all new to me, which is why I am slightly nervous, but at the same time feel this is going to be a great journey with awesome people. Wish me luck!