Opportunity Scholarships

RailsConf 2017 is offering a limited number of full conference registration scholarships, open to anyone who would not normally attend, though we specifically encourage students, women, minorities, and other underrepresented groups in the technology sector to apply. The Opportunity Scholarship is a chance to jump in to learn more about Ruby on Rails specifically and software development in general.

Here are some things that are included in the Scholarship program in addition to a free ticket to RailsConf 2017:

  • Pairing with a Guide, an experienced programmer or conference-goer who has attended RailsConf before and is already familiar with many key players at the conference.
  • An invitation to a welcome gathering to meet all of your fellow Scholars and the Guides the night before the conference
  • An instant connection to the other Scholars, who are in your same boat, being new to the Rails community
  • The chance to level up your skills by attending awesome talks throughout the conference and meeting influential people in the community
  • An invitation to a Slack community for the Scholars and Guides. This is a great place to ask any questions of each other before, during, and even after the conference.
  • Note: unfortunately, we are not necessarily able to provide transportation or accommodation support for Scholars. Generous donations from our sponsors and community have allowed us to do this at some past conferences, but we are not able to make any guarantees at this time.

Also, if it applies to you, we’re pleased to share that RailsConf 2017 offers complimentary childcare and a lactation room for all attendees. Just let us know if you will require this!

Testimonials from previous Scholars:

"Coming to any new place and meeting so many new people can be especially daunting, but this program allowed me to feel immediately more comfortable. I met so many incredible people and learned so much!!" - Amy Dusek, Scholar "Being gifted with the opportunity to meet so many AWESOME people who share my interests and aspirations was a life-changing experience I will never forget!" -Rene Sanchez, Scholar
What are you waiting for?

Scholar applications will be accepted until 11:59pm MST on February 21, 2017 (Please note TIMEZONE).

Apply Now

Be a RailsConf Guide!

Want to help bring a new community member into the RailsConf 2017 community? We're looking for volunteer Guides to partner up with this year's Opportunity Scholars. Scholars are folks new to the Ruby/Rails community, or maybe even new to writing code altogether, and they're ready to have their first -- hopefully transformative -- RailsConf experience. They've been telling us the amazing stories of their path to RailsConf, and we genuinely think they're going to be wonderful additions to our community. What we need from you is to help welcome them in and make them feel at home!

It’s hard to pin down one key thing that makes a great Guide, so here are a few things that we're looking for specifically:

  • Guides should be comfortable being available as a friendly face for their Scholars throughout the whole conference. You don’t have to stick with them the whole time, but you should be there for them, able to meet with them at least a few times a day.
  • Guides should be able to recommend great talks for Scholars to attend after hearing about their interests, current skill levels, and experiences.
  • Guides should be comfortable making introductions between Scholars and established developers, especially ones that might be particularly influential in the Scholars' areas of interest.
  • Guides should be able to give feedback on breaking into the Ruby/Rails world, especially for Scholars looking for their first Ruby/Rails gig!

Note: Guides are responsible for obtaining their own tickets to RailsConf.

Some examples of folks who have made fantastic Guides in the past are: RailsConf speakers, folks who are at their second RailsConf (meaning they remember what it's like to be new!), Hallway Track Superstars, and former RubyConf or RailsConf Opportunity Scholars.

But even if you don't fit in one of those categories, you may still be a great fit -- apply using the link on the right and tell us why you'd be a great community ambassador!

Note: When applying to be a Guide, please fill out the entire application. These applications are used not only to accept Guides into the Scholar/Guide program, but also to make Scholar/Guide matches that we hope are highly beneficial for both parties.

Testimonials from previous Guides:

"The Scholar program is a great way to bring new people into the fold. I've been a programmer for a long time, and I'm still intimidated at times by some people. Being a newbie is also pretty intimidating with all there is to learn. So it's nice to be able to break down walls and do a little mentoring along the way." -Barrett Clark, Guide "Conferences are overwhelming when you're a first-timer: where do you go? Who do you talk to? Are you allowed to ask the speakers to sign your laptop? The Scholar program helps newbies bypass all those worries. Being a Guide lets you be a big part of shaping someone’s first conference into a positive, empowering experience, and that is hugely rewarding. This program is one of my favorite parts of RailsConf." -Louisa Barrett, Guide
Guide applications will be accepted until 11:59pm MST on February 21, 2017 (Please note TIMEZONE).

Apply Now

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