How To Contribute to Drupal: Events
Getting started in any technology can feel intimidating. The best way to learn, though, is by doing -- and a combination of the opportunity provided by Drupal Global Contribution Weekend and a supportive developer community combines to reduce your barriers to entry.
With 2020’s Global Contribution Weekend fast approaching, I wanted to share my experience from last year to show how -- no matter what your experience and skill level with the CMS -- there’s a place for you in Drupal.
Attending Drupal Users Group Meet-ups is one of the ways you can get involved with the Drupal community.
It was a cold day in January 2019 and I was only three weeks into my internship at Digital Echidna. Despite watching lots of tutorials and coding many practice projects, I knew I had only scratched the surface of what Drupal has to offer. That’s why, when a few developers on the team invited me to London Drupal Users Group (LonDUG)’s annual Drupal Global Contribution Weekend event, I wasn’t sure I wanted to go.
I was intimidated by the idea of trying to contribute with so little experience. But, I decided to give it a shot and attend - and I am so glad I did.
At the event that Saturday, I quickly settled in with the office wifi and an absurd number of cookies, while those around me huddled over their laptops and talked excitedly about working through different problems. I felt lost until another developer showed me the Drupal Novice level issues list and helped me find a task I could understand and resolve.
Even though the task was pretty straightforward, as a relative newcomer to Drupal, I was cautious. It took me a few hours to read through some Drupal documentation to figure out how exactly to make this change and how to share it in a way that would make sense to the rest of the community.
When I hit submit, it was with trepidation and butterflies in my stomach. I felt ridiculous having to spend so long on such a basic task, but the other folks there were very encouraging through it all and thanked me for coming. I went home feeling satisfied for having the nerve to show up.
A few hours later, I saw a company Slack notification from Andrew, Echidna’s president, sharing a tweet from Dries Buytaert - the founder of Drupal itself - that congratulated me on my first-ever Drupal contribution!
Here is a screen shot of the twitter exchange:
I was pretty shocked the Drupal community would take the time to acknowledge something that seemed so minor as a first contribution, and that both the agency I was interning for and the global Drupal sphere would celebrate my tiny accomplishment. It made me feel seen and recognized in a way I’d never expected, and was the validation I needed to keep going. After all, who wouldn’t want to be a part of a community that is so open and welcoming to newcomers finding their way?
In the year since, I graduated from school and was hired as a full-time technical project coordinator / web developer at Digital Echidna.
Drupal Global Contribution Weekend 2020
The annual global contribution event is coming up again Saturday, January 25th. This year, the LonDUG Meetup is joining forces with Waterloo Region Drupal Users Meetup, and together hosting an all-day event in London.
What better thing to do on a cold day at the end of January, than to get a group of Drupal heroes together to make Drupal even better? Powered by caffeine, creativity, and global community, we will contribute to code, documentation, patches, writing, translations, and more.
Register on Meetup to ensure your spot at the table. Don’t forget to bring your laptop.
Come for the whole day or drop by for an hour or two. For students, this weekend is a great opportunity for you to come in and meet some people in the community. It will give you the chance to:
- Grow your skills;
- Learn more about Drupal;
- Network with local developers;
- Extend your contacts and reach to a global network; and
- Contribute to a project bigger than any one of us.
There will also be snacks and beverages on hand.
Hope to see you soon!
Read other blogs in the this series, How To Contribute To Drupal.
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