CommunityBridge Mentorship is a service for connecting mentees with mentors to increase diversity and inclusion and inject new talent into open source communities. Each open source project participating in CommunityBridge Mentorship is responsible for developing the structure and guidelines for their own mentorship program, including identifying mentors and mentees, outlining tasks for mentees, and determining stipends and/or other incentives for participants.
Each project decides the duration of its mentorship programs, but most start at 12 weeks. Projects often offer opportunities for part-time and full-time mentorships. For example, the Linux Kernel Mentorship Program includes both full-time and part-time volunteer mentee positions each year.
To encourage participation and support diversity initiatives, the Linux Foundation is offering $3,000 USD matching project stipends for the first 100 candidates selected for diversity mentorships. Diversity grant matching is only available to projects that are participating in CommunityBridge Funding and providing stipends for mentees. Linux Foundation projects participating in only CommunityBridge Mentorship are not eligible for matching, with the exception of the Linux Kernel. In order to be considered, candidates must first be accepted into a project’s mentorship program and then apply by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
People looking for professional advancement in open source as well as students are welcome to apply to participate as mentees. Mentors must be approved or invited to participate by that project’s administrator. All applicants must meet the CommunityBridge Mentorship eligibility requirements outlined in the CommunityBridge Mentorship Guide.
Mentees are not employees of the Linux Foundation or of the project providing the mentorship, so they are not directly paid wages for their participation in the mentorship. However, many projects choose to offer stipends and other incentives to support and encourage mentees to participate. Funding for stipends and other perks is determined solely by each project. The Linux Kernel, for example, will offer a total stipend of $5,500 USD per mentee for the mentorship period, and mentees also receive travel funding to industry conferences to present the work they’ve done during the program.
Mentorship program graduates are listed on CommunityBridge. Employers who have opted in can receive referrals for mentee graduates from the mentors who worked with them during the mentorship program. Employers that receive referrals can choose to contact graduates about potential employment opportunities.
Mentee resumes can be shared with mentors during the application process. After successfully completing the mentorship program, mentee resumes can be shared with prospective employers who have registered for the CommunityBridge platform and been approved by the Linux Foundation. Mentee resumes can also be shared with project administrators.
Open source projects participating in CommunityBridge Mentorship include the Linux Kernel, Zephyr, Open Mainframe Project, Jaeger, and Vue.js. Corporate participants include Huawei and Twitter.