Evan emailed me tonight to point out that former Seneca BSD graduate, Lukas Blakk, was interviewed in the Globe and Mail. The article looks at ways various colleges in Ontario are helping to prepare their students for high-tech jobs. Seneca's deep commitment to real-world, open source projects like Firefox, Fedora, and others is highlighted:
Ms. Blakk says she got that job thanks to experience and exposure gained while at Seneca. Students are involved in real-world open-source development projects, working on software code for real-world products. "There's Seneca students' code in Firefox that's shipping right now," says Evan Weaver, chair of the School of Computer Studies, "and there's a lot more that's going to be in Firefox 4, that comes out in a few months."
We've worked with a lot of great people in our open source courses and research, and Lukas is someone I'll always remember and use as an example. She wasn't afraid to follow me into very complicated and difficult technology, wasn't afraid to fall down and get back up. Her story is the one I want for all my students--her hard work in the classroom led to internships and full-time work related to her project. One of my friends likes to joke that I should only give students an A if their code ships. Well, Lukas got an A.
Our students are capable of amazing things when given the opportunity and encouragement. And with amazing partners like Mozilla, who value community and student involvement at every level of their product life-cycle, more and more of them are getting to "act like [they are] really software developers already while [they are] still in school."
Well done, Lukas. Well done, Mozilla. Well done, Seneca.