Mentorship is a great opportunity for professionals to share their experiences and impart their knowledge to others. In Ian Ballou’s case, mentorship offered a great opportunity to pay forward the great experience he had as a mentee during his internship at Red Hat. This led Ian to a group of four computer science students at UMass Lowell who chose to work on Foreman and Katello with Red Hat during their senior year. This project gives computer science students at UMass Lowell a chance to put their learning into practice on a major project as they prepare to enter the professional world.
This project was impactful for the students because they were exposed to how open source works. While open source development tools such as GitHub were not new to them, they did learn how to implement the Patternfly framework and collaborate with upstream communities. The students’ work will be influential to the upstream developers who are currently working on making changes to the Content View UI in Katello. Their feedback on Patternfly will also influence the roadmap of new features..
At the end of the semester, the group of four presented their work to UMass Lowell faculty and Red Hat engineers. This was a great opportunity to share their accomplishments and especially valuable because one of the most challenging things for engineers to do is to present their work in a professional environment. It was also a great opportunity for the wider faculty and administration group, who attend all senior “capstone” project presentations, to learn more about how the student contributions can make a difference in the real world through open source software. The students had some interesting insights about collaborating on open source, and their plans for the future, shared in the recorded presentation session here: