Outreachy is a program that provides paid internships working on FOSS (Free and Open Source Software) to applicants from around the world. Internships are three months long and involve deep, technical work on a mentor-selected project, guided by mentors and other developers working on the FOSS application. At Mozilla, projects include work on Firefox itself, development of associated services and sites like Taskcluster and Treeherder, and analysis of Firefox telemetry data from a data-science perspective.
The program has an explicit focus on diversity: “Anyone who faces under-representation, systemic bias, or discrimination in the technology industry of their country is invited to apply.” It’s a small but very effective step in achieving better representation in this field. One of the interesting side-effects is that the program sees a number of career-changing participants. These people bring a wealth of interesting and valuable perspectives, but face challenges in a field where many have been programming since they were young.
Round 20 will involve full-time, remote work from mid-December 2019 to mid-March 2020. Initial applications for this round are now open.
New this year, applicants will need to make an “initial application” to determine eligibility before September 24. During this time, applicants can only see the titles of potential internship projects – not the details. On October 1, all applicants who have been deemed eligible will be able to see the full project descriptions. At that time, they’ll start communicating with project mentors and making small open-source contributions, and eventually prepare applications to one or more projects.
So, here’s the call to action:
- If you are or know people who might benefit from this program, encourage them to apply or to talk to one of the Mozilla coordinators (Kelsey Witthauer and myself) at
- If you would like to mentor for the program, there’s still time! Get in touch with us and we’ll figure it out.