The UK Government getting companies (including Microsoft) to sign up to offer internships to new graduates to try and make them more employable during the downturn. This got me thinking about the Summer of Code. How could we tweak the program to make it more useful for people in this way?
Doing the SoC is useful experience in itself. But focussing a bit more on employability, and perhaps the needs of employers in assessing candidates, might be a good way of getting a larger number of higher quality applications. People might be more likely to come and work with the Mozilla project, as opposed to the 100+ other (excellent) free software projects on the list, if they see tangible ways that it improves their resumé.
One thing I thought of is that we could ask mentors to write references for the students, over and above the final survey. But apart from that, I didn’t have any good ideas. So I’m hoping some of you do.