I’m on my last day as an Outreachy intern, thus this is my last blog post. I want to take this opportunity to talk about everything that I have gained from this experience, and why I think it’s an amazing opportunity if you’re getting started in tech.
First, regardless of whether you choose a documentation project or a coding project, this will serve as your first experience in tech, particularly working remotely with a team, which is extremely valuable experience. Potential employers are truly impressed when I discuss my Outreachy experience, and I believe that it makes a big difference if you’re just getting started, to have a remote internship in your CV.
Secondly, it is a paid internship, which is extremely important. Not everyone can afford to do an unpaid internship. This leads to less diversity in tech, since usually underrepresented minorities are financially underprivileged, and this is what makes Outreachy so essential: it provides a paid opportunity for people who aren’t privileged enough to do unpaid internships.
It allowed me to take time to focus solely on contributing to Open Source. If I had been doing an unpaid internship, it would have meant working 60-80 hours per week in order to have my first experience in tech.
Regarding learning new skills, this is something that will definitely happen regardless of which project you choose. In my case, I worked using my existing skills in writing and translating, but I gained extremely valuable skills in technical writing specifically, and working in a remote team. It also helped me boost my confidence that I can carry my work to completion, and that my work is valuable.
Last but not least, I met amazing people during my internship, from the mentors to all the collaborators and other applicants. It was an extremely valuable experience and I know that I will definitely keep in touch with many of them, particularly my mentor, Toni, who was one big reason why my experience was so fantastic.
In conclusion, if you’re eligible, do not miss your chance to apply. You will gain valuable experience even from the application process itself even if you’re not selected. If you are, prepare to work hard, have fun and learn tons in the process!