Need a guide?  Courtesy: akunamatata @ Flickr

Get some help from the industry experts and senior students who have volunteered their time to discuss your project with you!

Mentors come in many forms: from both industry, recent alumni, as well as even current students (many who took Orbital in the past years). See which matches your temperament and your idea. Do note that as in past years, some mentors are more popular than others, so be open-minded about whom you might want to work with if you are interested in getting a mentor.

Again, if you do want to try for mentorship, you need to let us know via a Slack DM or email telling us the names of the mentors you don’t mind having.

Do note that as in past years, some mentors are more popular than others, so be open-minded about whom you might want to work with if you are interested in getting a mentor.  We will acknowledge all requests so you know that your preferences are noted and currently in the processing pipeline.

We need this as soon as possible, as we wish to finalize mentorship links this week (by 13 May, Friday).  Mentorship is a two way street, and details on the program are on the website http://orbital.comp.nus.edu.sg/?page_id=1486.

(Some of the mentor profiles have been recently updated today!).

Currently, we have bids by the following 20 teams:

0xDEAD BEEF, 1064, 1080, 1173, 1182, 1192, Ant Inc., Copyleft, Foodies, Help, JFK, MusicMakers, No Break, No Brake, Ohm, OrderFirst, Panata, TAC, Team Rocket!, Travellin, bottMother and insertnamehere.

Not on this list, and wanting mentorship?  Please DM @knmnyn on Slack, with your mentor preference list ASAP.  Thanks!

Courtesy: vandycft @ Flickr

The mentorship programme, where student teams also get advisement from other industry professional and senior students, has been recently revamped.  We hope more teams will opt to take on mentorship as a means of getting additional support and encouragement on their projects (or even getting project ideas from their mentors).  The mentorship programme allows both Project Gemini and Apollo 11 teams to get support, in exchange for the commitment to work towards completing Orbital and keeping their mentors informed of their project.

Take a look at the mentorship page for more comprehensive details for both prospective mentors and mentee teams.

Orbital will feature three levels of achievement that student teams self-select.  Prospective teams need to indicate their preferred level of achievement when they express their interest in the programme. The level for each team will be finalized shortly after the workshop/hackathon session, and students will be notified of the outcome.

gagarin50_insignia_vostokВосто́к (Vostok) (Easy/Beginner) – Attend at least 12 hours of workshops, complete a basic web application (following the Python + Google App Engine, or Javascript + Express, as outlined by our programme). Complete the weekly check-ins and monthly peer-grading exercises.  Participate in the end of summer showcase.  Must score a minimum of 2 stars on feedback given to other teams and on own peer-graded project.  Must show evidence of development progress in all three months of the programme.

(Восто́к was name of the series of spaceflight program started by the Soviet Union which was the first to successfully launch a human, Yuri Gagarin, into space, and return him safely to Earth).

200px-GeminiPatchProject Gemini (Intermediate) – Completes the milestones for Vostok, and extends it further, completing at least 4 additional extension milestones.  Possible extensions include but are not limited to: social integration, mobile client, iterative usability testing, application-specific feature extensions, multiple / administrative frontends, downloading of user data.  Must be active on either Slack or the Mission Control sessions.  Must score a minimum of 2 stars on feedback given to other teams. Must score a minimum of 3 stars on own peer-graded project.

(Gemini was the second manned spacecraft programme by the USA.  It launched ten missions between 1965-1966.  Neil Armstrong cut his chops in Project Gemini before returning in the USA’s Project Apollo series of missions.)

201px-Apollo_11_insigniaApollo 11 (Difficult/Advanced) – Custom project defined by either the student team or the mentoring staff.  Must fulfill requirements of Project Gemini while extending further.  Strong evidence of project management, data security, user testing and/or source code control.  Must render assistance to other teams, by participating on Slack and in the Mission Control (Where possible) sessions.  Must score a minimum of 3 stars on feedback given to other teams  Must score a minimum of 4 stars on own peer-graded project.

(Apollo 11 was the first mission by the US NASA agency to land a human on the moon, and safely return him to Earth.  The distinction of being the first men on the moon belongs to Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin.)

The selection of the difficulty level is binding in the case of teams opting to do Apollo 11 or Project Gemini with external mentorship; i.e., student teams that elect to do A11 or PG and but do not complete the necessary achievements as judged by the mentoring staff may be deemed to have failed the course.  This because mentorship involves industry professionals and/or student mentors (i.e., costs manpower to run).  Both A11 and PG level passes allow the team to bypass Round 1 interviews for the NUS Overseas Programme, as a recognition of the skills achieved by the team.

We do encourage inspired students to try for this highest level of achievement, as this will enhance their programming capabilities and inspire a higher level of confidence.  Students who complete Apollo 11 or Project Gemini may opt to continue this line of development in future coursework in the School’s set of Entrepreneurship modules.

Important Revisions

2016 – Added PG as eligible for mentorship.  2015 – Added NOC credits for PG and above.

(Insignia: courtesy Wikipedia)