Recap of the Contributor Working Group’s Mentorship Chat on June 20th 2024


Meeting links (SlackSlack Slack is a Collaborative Group Chat Platform The WordPress community has its own Slack Channel at APAC/EMEA, AMER

Host and Notes: @harishanker

In Attendance:
APAC/EMEA @harishanker (host) + @devmuhib @estelaris @javiercasares @josepmoran @lighthouse79 @lumiblog @matteoenna @meher @nao @nilovelez @oglekler @oneal @patricia70 @poena @rcreators @sumitsingh @unintended8 @webtechpooja @lumiblog @gmrafi @nhrrob@yoga1103 + async @rcreators @tobifjellner

AMER: @harishanker (host) + @alexcu21 @colorful-tones @gusaus @hellosatya @matteoenna @rogermedia @kirasong


Mentorship Program Wins and Updates

We celebrated wins from the mentorship program in the last chat, incluing the program being featured in the WP Briefing Podcast and the DooTheWoo podcast. Our program also made a splash at WordCampWordCamp WordCamps are casual, locally-organized conferences covering everything related to WordPress. They're one of the places where the WordPress community comes together to teach one another what they’ve learned throughout the year and share the joy. Learn more. Europe 2024, with the event generating a lot of excitement and energy. At the camp, there was a dedicated WordCamp Connect session titled “Introduction to the Mentorship Program” which was facilitated by group members @nao @peiraisotta and @josepmoran. This session provided detailed insights into various aspects of the program and generated significant excitement among attendees. Additionally, in the opening slide of Matt Mullenweg’s 2024 Summer Update, the mentorship program was featured with Q1 2024 mentees being celebrated. Additionally, the opening slide of Matt Mullenweg’s 2024 Summer Update celebrated the Q1 2024 mentees of the mentorship program. Here are some pictures from WCEUWCEU WordCamp Europe. The European flagship WordCamp event.:

Participants in the chat expressed their enthusiasm and positive experiences from WordCamp Europe 2024. According to in-person participants at the dedicated WordCamp Connect session, there was great engagement and valuable questions during the event. @josepmoran‘s proposal to bring the mentorship program to local teams in their own languages got a lot of attention. Seeing all the interest from WordCamp participants in mentorship, we opened up an early call for interest for the 2024 Q4 mentorship program at WCEU, which was also announced in the final presentation!

Mentorship Program Cohort #3 (Q4 2024) Updates

Preparations for the next mentorship program have begun with the early call for interest already out. In the last meeting, the group decided on a cohort size of about 40 mentees paired with 20 mentorsEvent Supporter Event Supporter (formerly Mentor) is someone who has already organised a WordCamp and has time to meet with their assigned mentee every 2 weeks, they talk over where they should be in their timeline, help them to identify their issues, and also identify solutions for their issues.. The aim is to involve as many Make/Teams as possible, with each mentee working on dedicated projects contributing to the 6.7 release.

The program will be executed in four phases:

  1. Planning (June to August 2024): The full call for mentees and mentors will open in August.
  2. Cohort Selection and Program Building (August to September 2024): Selection of participants will take place, with announcements in early September.
  3. Mentorship Program (late September to early November 2024): The program will run for 4-6 weeks leading up to the release week.
  4. Graduation and Retrospective (November to December 2024): Focus on concluding activities and reflecting on the program.

Chat participants expressed great interest in the cohort and in joining the same in various capacities. We then opened up a discussion on the following important points:

  • On Ensuring Great Mentorship
    Participants emphasized the need for pre-introduction workshops to help mentees understand various teams and select the right one, preventing mismatches and dropouts. The importance of conducting interviews with potential mentees and mentors to ensure a clear understanding of stable and lasting contributions was highlighted. There was consensus on creating a clear schedule of workshops and introductory sessions. Additionally, the idea of multilingual mentorship programs was proposed to make contributions more accessible to non-English speakers, with suggestions for local language cohorts working on language-specific projects. Regular Zoom calls for mentees to share progress and experiences were also recommended.
  • Connecting Mentorship with 6.7 Release
    The group discussed integrating the mentorship program with the WordPress 6.7 release. It was suggested that mentees could work on high-priority projects or features related to the release, providing them with practical tasks. This approach aims to give mentees real-life experience and a sense of contribution to the coreCore Core is the set of software required to run WordPress. The Core Development Team builds WordPress. WordPress project.
  • Timeline to Open the Formal Call for Applications
    The group was in agreement with the suggested timeline.
  • Suggestions for Next Cohort
    Suggestions for the next cohort included setting clear expectations for mentors and mentees, involving them in practical tasks to build self-esteem and a sense of usefulness. The idea of having local language cohorts working on language-specific projects alongside the main program was discussed. Creating a dedicated landing page and providing recognition for mentors and mentees were suggested to enhance the program’s visibility and appeal. There were also proposals to include opportunities for mentees to work closely with release leads, providing valuable real-life experience. Direct outreach and scholarships for underrepresented groups were recommended to ensure a diverse group of participants. An early call for “Make/Team Projects” was also suggested for this cohort.

Creating a Plan for On-Demand Mentorship in 2025

We took some time to discuss implementation details for the On-Demand Mentorship Idea. Key points discussed in the last chat include creating a structured asynchronous mentorship approach, a pool of available mentors, clear processes, a dedicated onboarding Slack channel, mentorship content on Learn WordPress, Q&A sessions, and bridging cohorts with continuous mentorship.

We realize that it might be difficult to implement this idea in 2024, but we are considering implementing the same in 2025. Towards that, we discussed the following points:

  • Adopt Current Cohort-Based Mentorship Structure for On-Demand Mentorship
    We discussed the idea of leveraging the existing cohort-based mentorship structure for the on-demand program. The idea is to create a detailed process and documentation to guide mentors and mentees, ensuring consistency. This approach could bridge on-demand mentorship with the cohort-based model, providing ongoing guidance and support. It was suggested to document key learnings and progress on a platform like P2P2 P2 or O2 is the term people use to refer to the Make WordPress blog. It can be found at, allowing mentees to showcase their achievements.
  • Creating a Process for 1:1 Mentorship
    The value of offering mentorship on demand was highlighted in this discussion. We all agreed that having a structured program where new contributors could onboard into the project with the help of a mentorEvent Supporter Event Supporter (formerly Mentor) is someone who has already organised a WordCamp and has time to meet with their assigned mentee every 2 weeks, they talk over where they should be in their timeline, help them to identify their issues, and also identify solutions for their issues., could facilitate quality contributions. We shared the idea of creating a framework for mentors to support mentees asynchronously through a dedicated process and structure. The idea of having a pool of mentors was explored, with hopes of encouraging mentees to connect with other mentors, too, when needed, on an on-demand mentorship program.
  • Facilitating On-Demand Mentorship
    To facilitate on-demand mentorship, the group proposed creating a pool of available mentors who can be booked for sessions by mentees. This system would allow for flexible and immediate support. The idea of hosting sessions with multiple mentors for open questions was also discussed, with sessions conducted based on mentee interest. Creating a central repository of current mentor/mentee assignments was suggested to ensure coordination and awareness among mentors. We all agreed that to move ahead with on-demand mentorship, the process should be clear and documented, as well as possible.
  • How to Connect Mentors and Mentees
    Participants emphasized the need for a dedicated Slack channel for onboarding new contributors, serving as a general onboarding space with team-specific customizations. This channel would facilitate easy connections between mentors and mentees. Additionally, mentorship content on Learn WordPress, coupled with Q&A sessions, was proposed to provide flexible support. Collaborative documentation and clear guidelines would help mentors and mentees navigate the on-demand mentorship process effectively. We also explored the idea of setting up some Informal (unstructured) mentorship across the project. Also, we discussed setting up various criteria to match mentors and mentees, including their language preferences, region, personalities, etc.

In conclusion, the group decided to use preparation time towards Cohort #3 as a way to create documentation and structure as a first step towards launching on-demand mentorship in early 2025.

Five for the Future Updates and Handbook

We announced publicly in this chat that the first version of the Five for the Future Handbook is now out thanks to efforts from multiple contributors ( @angelasjin, @estelaris, @francescodicandia, @harishanker, @kirasong, @kafleg, @patricia70 @peiraisotta, @poena, @nao ) Here’s a link to the handbook We invited working group members to share feedback on the same.

Open Floor

We congratulated Cynthia Norman (@cnormandigital), a mentee from the inaugural cohort of the mentorship program, for winning the prestigious Kim Parsell Scholarship. Cynthia began her journey in WordPress contributions through our program, and this achievement was celebrated with great pride. More details can be found in the official announcement and on the WordCamp US Twitter page.

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