Google Code-in (GCI) is an annual online competition aimed at introducing pre-university students (13-17 years old) to open source projects, development and communities, through short 3-5 hour tasks. As opposed to the Google Summer of Code program, in GCI students are not selected by the organizations, but freely pick up tasks from one or more mentoring organizations and complete them. Students qualify for different prizes (i.e. certificate, t-shirts, hoodies and the grand prize of visiting Google’s main headquarters in San Francisco) depending on the number of tasks they complete. During GCI, mentors have a unique opportunity to interact with pre-university students and to encourage them to enter the world of open source coding.
Three students and a senior lecturer from the department of Geography, Geoinformatics and Meteorology acted as mentors for GCI under an organization called the Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo). OSGeo is an not-for-profit organization established in 2006 with the mission to promote global adoption of open geospatial technology. OSGeo has various educational initiatives through GeoforAll and United Nations OpenGIS, but Google Code-in and Google Summer of Code remains the most successful. The mentors were Luqmaan Hassim, Azile Mdleleni, Cameron Green and Dr. Victoria Rautenbach. They were part of a team of 16 mentors that mentored over 400 students for 7 weeks from the 2nd of December 2019 to the 21st of January 2020. The official OSGeo press release can be found here: https://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/Google_Code_In_2019_Results_Press_Release. There was a lot of work that needed to be completed during this 7 week period but the mentors excelled at the task at hand and the students thoroughly enjoyed themselves.
More about GCI can be found here: https://codein.withgoogle.com/about/
More about OSGeo can be found here: https://www.osgeo.org/about/