How I Went From Newbie to Open Source Project Owner

Accepted Session
Short Form
Scheduled: Thursday, June 22, 2017 from 3:45 – 4:30pm in B204


This is the story of how focusing first on building a community of individuals who care about mentoring has allowed me to turn the idea of mentor matching for people learning to code into a multi-platform open source project.


As someone new to the development community, finding your way around can be a daunting task. There are no defined paths, there’s an overwhelming amount of information to ingest, and focus is an almost impossible task. Becoming an active member of open source projects is a great way for newbies to practice their coding skills, develop meaningful community relationships, and become a part of and add value to something bigger than themselves. You only have to look around you to see that individuals thrive when they feel that they have strong relationships and belong to a community.

1. Understanding the value of the Open Source Community as a newbie
2. Strategies for building community offline and online
3. Bringing the community together to work on something that matters to them


Open Source, newbie, community, Code of Conduct, github

Speaking experience

Speaking Experience:
2016: ScotlandJS, Nodemember, and Clojure/conf
2017: PyTennessee, Py Caribbean, DevNexus
Upcoming: JazzCon (Keynote), Clojure/west (Panel Moderator), Syntax (Keynote), and We RISE.

YouTube Presentations


  • Kim crayton


    Kim has years of experience working with learners of all ages, skill level, and abilities. She is now using her knowledge to help improve technical people, ideas, and organizations. She is the past co-organizer of CodeNewbie-Atlanta, founder of JrDevMentoring, author of the “Tech Talk For Non-Techies” blog, and a contributor to the Hypepotamus newsletter. Kim is currently pursuing a Doctors of Business Administration – Technology Entrepreneurship. Her doctoral study topic is: “Strategies some software development managers use to effectively mentor junior software developers.” She is also working on her passion projects #MentoringMinute,, @100000Intros and @TheSpectrumCode