OSRE Summer 2022 - Information for Interested Students

 Program Applications Process Will Open in early 2022

Deadline for Student Applications will be late April/ early May 2022.

For Summer 2022, the Center for Research in Open Source Software (CROSS) is seeking students interested in working on University of California-based open source software projects. Our mentors, who are faculty and researchers from throughout the UC system, have provided a list of project ideas that can be used as a basis for student project proposals. The goal of this program is to increase student capabilities in working in open source projects, add productive contributors to on-going projects, and further promote open source throughout the UC system.

CROSS values diversity and inclusion in all our projects. We invite students from groups traditionally excluded in tech and open source communities to apply to this program.


Student Application Information:

Why should I apply?

OSRE is aimed to increase a student’s real-world coding and developer skills. Selected students benefit from direct mentorship to guide their work and improve their technical abilities. OSRE students are paid stipend equivalent to the rate of a student programming assistant.

Who can apply?

Due to the open source nature of all OSRE projects, contributions are welcomed from any college or university student (over the age of 18). If you are based at a non-US university, please contact cross-info@ucsc.edu to confirm your eligibility for this program.

We typically support the work of undergraduate students; however graduate students may also apply to work on more advanced project ideas. Please check out the project ideas page and contact the mentor if you have questions.

How do I find project ideas?

In late 2021, mentors will start putting up project ideas on our OSRE Project Idea Marketplace. These project ideas are meant to help students craft a summer project application that will be rewarding for them and positively contribute to an existing open source project led or maintained my one of our mentors.

Should I contact the mentor before applying?

YES!! All students should reach out to the mentors before they begin the application process. Mentors are expecting to hear from you! We understand that reaching out to mentors you have never met may be a barrier for some students so we will be also holding a series of virtual "meet-and-greets" to give students a chance to hear from mentors and interact with them in small groups/break out sessions. Those session are expected to happen in late 2021 and early 2022. Check back here for more details.

What does a successful OSRE application entail?

Most successful OSRE proposals have been reviewed with the mentor prior to final submission and students have an opportunity to integrate mentor comments into their final application. We suggest that students use the Summer Research Experience Proposal Template as a general guide for what to include in their application. The length of an application may vary based on project needs, but most projects range from 4 to 8 pages. 

What skills do I need to apply?

Each project idea has listed required skills needed for to contribute. If you see a project you are interested in, reach out to the mentors for specific questions about what capabilities you will need.

For those new to coding or open source contribution -- many projects need students helping with documentation and other "first-timer" activities. Mentors will indicate activities/projects that are specifically aimed at those new to coding and open source. if you have questions, please contact the mentor or cross-info@ucsc.edu.

What is the timeline for the program?

(Note - these dates are subject to change so please check back for possible updates)

Students can reach out to mentors beginning in mid-January. Student applications will be due to April 30, 2022.

OSRE project typically run from 10 to 12 weeks, from early June to early September. We allow for start/end date flexibility accomodate differing academic year schedules.


Summer Research Proposal Template

The OSRE is meant to teach a diverse set of students how to productively engage in open source communities while supporting high-impact academic based research and innovation. Our ideas page provides the contact information for those mentoring OSRE students this summer. Students are expected to reach out to these mentors early on in the proposals stage and should have had some interaction with them prior to finalizing their proposals.

The template below is meant to help guide you through the application writing process. Final submissions should be sent to cross-info@ucsc.edu, cc'ing the relevant mentor(s).


Proposal Template


  • Proposal Title

  • Define the problem you are trying to solve

  • Provide background about the current state of the problem and describe your solution

Project goals

  • Project objectives and expected deliverables

Implementation Plan

  • Project methodology (How will you work to meet your goals?)

  • Describe the project's technical elements

Project Timeline

  • Project plan and deliverables schedule 

Biographical information

  • Contact information: full name, email address, current academic affiliation 

    • Optional: Blog URL, github or twitter accounts; any additional contact information you think we need.

  • Relevant experience / previous work

  • Relevant education background; list relevant coursework if applicable.

  • Programming/development interests and strengths


Note to all applicants:

Seek out mentors and other relevant contributors to learn more about the communities you want to work in. You are encouraged to ask questions and mentors are here to help you improve your application.


See Also