Read the most commonly asked questions and answers related to the Google Summer of Code and Outreachy program
Application process steps
If you are considering applying, follow the steps in the order in which they are listed:
- Make sure that you are eligible to participate. Project details will only be visible to applicants that have passed an eligibility check.
- Browse through the Outreachy program website and application process. Develop your understanding of the various stages of the program.
- Understand Wikimedia's technical areas There are a lot of technical areas in which you can contribute (e.g. Gadgets, Extensions, Skins, Bots, etc). Knowledge of these areas will help you a lot in choosing a project.
- Choose a project that best suits your interests and skill set from the ideas listed on the Wikimedia community projects page on the Outreachy website.
- Do your research about the project thoroughly. Do not expect spoon-feeding. Ask intelligent and explicit questions. "Can you tell me more about this project?" is a bad question.
- Express your interest in working on a project by commenting on the corresponding task on Wikimedia Phabricator. (See Phabricator/Help if you do not have a Phabricator account yet.)
- Communicate with project mentors Discuss with them your ideas for implementation and learn about their availability and willingness to mentor.
- Learn basic skills required for development If you are planning on contributing to a project that involves the MediaWiki codebase, learn how to start hacking. For other projects, check the getting started steps in the task description of the project you have chosen on Phabricator.
- Make small contributions to the project and record them on the Outreachy program website Only applicants that make at least one contribution and record that contribution on the Outreachy website will be eligible to be accepted as an intern. A contribution doesn't have to be merged or accepted to be recorded. Without this step you will not be able to start on your application. Note: You can work on a microtask linked in the project description on Phabricator or the Outreachy site. If there are none available for a task, ask mentors to point you to some. You could also fix smaller bugs in that project.
- Read a few good proposals that were accepted for the previous round. Here they are: example 1, example 2, example 3.
- Submit your proposal as a task on Wikimedia Phabricator:
- Fill out this pre-populated application template.
- Make sure to add "Outreachy (Round XX)" in the "Tags" field.
- Set yourself as task assignee in the "Assigned To" field of your proposal.
- Your proposal in Phabricator will be public, so do not add here any personal information such as your email address or phone number.
- Check the Preview at the bottom. If it looks fine, click "Create New Task".
- You can still edit and improve your existing proposal (before the application deadline) via "Edit Task".
- If you apply for an existing project idea, then make your proposal a subtask: Click "Edit Related Tasks… 🡒 Edit Parent Tasks" and add the task of the project idea (e.g. "T123456").
- Make sure that you upload a separate application form available on the Outreachy's program site. Answer any specific questions related to academic commitments and eligibility.
- Discuss your own project idea with a possible mentor If you couldn't find anything interesting in our project ideas, you could ask organization administrators to help you connect with a mentor.
If you get accepted, here is what we will encourage you to do to have a successful project:
Community bonding period
- Start communicating with your mentors on refining your project proposal, finalizing deadlines and setting milestones
- Join Zulip, a communication platform that program administrators will use to share announcements and opportunities for participating in Wikimedia activities
- Write blogposts. When you complete a task other than the coding work, for example, join Zulip, pass an evaluation phase, write a blogpost, make sure to add it to the Updates column in the Accepted projects section here
- Upload your profile picture on Wikimedia Commons, and add it below your name in the Accepted projects section here
- Stay in touch with Wikimedia community members and help them learn about you more:
- Read stories from across the Wikimedia movement on Medium
- Watch previous videos on Wikimedia technical topics
- Write weekly reports
- Stay up-to-date with your goals as outlined in the timeline
- Communicate regularly with mentors and keep them updated about your progress and challenges
- Submit evaluations on time
- Attend any program-related meetings we host
- Follow any guidelines we share to involve you in our community and process.
Stay involved after the internship
- Mentor tasks in Google Code-in at the end of a calendar year. Learn about the responsibilities. All interns who successfully complete their project will be encouraged to apply as a mentor.
- Become a mentor in the next round of Google Summer of Code or Outreachy. Interns who demonstrate good quality work and ability to mentor will be encouraged by their mentors and organization administrators to apply.
- Learn about the upcoming Wikimedia Hackathons and apply for a scholarship to attend.
- Request quick support through Grants:Project/Rapid if you would like to continue working on further ideas for improvements to your GSoC project. You could also request support for conference travel. Read previous grant requests such as this one and this one.
- Spread the word in your university about Wikimedia Outreach programs.
- Stay in touch with organization administrators on Zulip.
- Continue working on Wikimedia New Developers projects.
Outreachy travel allowance
Outreachy provides $500 allowance for travel relevant to Outreachy. The allowance is good for one year from the date the internship starts. Before booking a trip, interns need to get their travel approved from their mentor. There is no specific format to request approval; interns need to email their mentor and confirm that the conference they’ve picked is the most appropriate one and best aligned with the work they did during the internship. Before getting started with the process, please review the information here.
- Ask us almost anything on the Zulip chat.
- Join the wikitech-l mailing list to receive Wikimedia technical news, including program updates. You can select the digest mode and read just the summary, or take part in discussions already.
- Some MediaWiki updates are also on the Wikimedia Foundation technology blog, Twitter and Facebook.