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< GSOC 2017

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Stephen Onnen Google Summer of Code 2017 Application

Contact Information

Name: Stephen Onnen
Email Address: User Page:

About Me

As you can see by the title, my name is Stephen Onnen; I am 29 years old and I am currently serving in the US Army as a Ranger Instructor in northern Georgia. I am married, and my wife and I just had our first child, a boy, last summer. I have been serving in the Army for over ten years now, continuously since I graduated high school in 2006. I love the military, but I know my future is in software development and I plan on transitioning out of the military at the end of my contract this September and moving back to Des Moines Iowa(my hometown) with my wife and child.

I have always been fascinated by technology, and am currently working towards my Associates in Science degree, which I should have by the end of this summer. After achieving my associates, I will continue my education, working towards a Bachelors in Software Engineering. Though my current job is an Infantryman, and instructor at Ranger School, I still am the primary computer jack of all trades in my workplace, and also handle all our administrative systems at my unit for Ranger School. I also developed and implemented a Microsoft Access database that my Battalion uses for our administrative boards at the end of each Ranger class.

Though I have not completed any formal training on software development, in my free time I have been learning C#. Mostly just basic CLI applications thus far. I also have a good deal of experience with basic HTML and CSS, and I am also very proficient with Adobe Photoshop and Inkscape.

Why the Fedora Project?

The Fedora Project has always been inspiring to me to me. I have always poured over fedoramagaine, and since beginning to use Linux 2 or 3 years ago I have been in a love affair with Fedora from the start(I actually began using Korora). My experience in the military has brought me face to face with RHEL being used in different systems, and I have always felt that if it is secure enough for the US Military, it has to be good enough for me. I have also always been drawn in by the sense of community and professionalism that bleeds from every aspect of everything Fedora.

Why the ASP.Net Project?

I would like to work on the ASP.NET Core web app proposed in the GSOC 2017 ideas page because I believe I have a good starting skill-set in the areas necessary. I have been working primarily with C# since I began learning to code on my own. Though I only have a very basic understanding of C#, I feel like this project would be an amazing opportunity for me to grow in the field of software development. I have great experience with HTML and CSS, and since my teenage years I have been creating basic web sites as a hobby. I am also proficient with Adobe Photoshop, and have an eye for graphic design.

Above all else, I am a hard worker, and perform very well in small teams, as I have been for 10 years now in the military. I am excellent at task management, and can juggle multiple deadlines and projects at one time. Lastly I want to get my feet wet in the open source community. I have always wanted to contribute to the software I love and use on a daily basis, but have been too timid to make the jump myself. Please Select me for the GSOC 2017 and let me prove what a great asset I can be for Fedora!

-Stephen Onnen


My job as a Ranger Instructor for the military keeps me relatively busy, on top of that I am currently taking online classes towards my associates degree. That being said, I still have quite a bit of free time, and would love to spend that free time contributing to something as prestigious in my eyes as the Fedora Project.

Being a little more specific on my job as an instructor, I am currently in the Mountain phase. Each Mountain phase is 22 days long, 5 days of mountaineering, 5 days of combat training, and 10 days of simulated combat in the mountains (the field portion). Though each cycle is the same, my responsibilities for each vary slightly, most significantly during the field portion of training. During the 10 day FTX (field training exercise) I will usually "walk" 2 or 3 times. What that means, is over the 10 day period I will be out actively grading ranger students for 24 hours, 2 or 3 times.
So my schedule can be a little crazy, but the days I am not working crazy long hours, I'm usually working from 6am ish to noon or 1 pm. So I still have plenty of time to work on projects at a consistent basis. It will be too easy to project my schedule out a month in advance, and communicate the days I will be working 24 hours to my mentor, because the schedule for the 22 day cycle is made prior to it beginning.

Please do not let my long hours negatively affect my proposal. I love working hard, I would not have made it as far as I have in the military if I did not!