Want to organize a workshop?


The Workshop Cookbook

We've got tons of information in our Workshop Cookbook, which lives in the RailsBridge GitHub wiki.

Read it, use it, and update it! (You just have to be logged into GitHub to make updates.)

Create an issue on the Organizing repo

We use GitHub to keep track of workshops in the works! If you're ready to start planning a RailsBridge workshop, add an issue and we can help you as much as you need.

Organizing: totally doable.

A lot of organizers have never thrown an event like this before and want to know what qualifications it takes. You don't have to be a born event-planner to be an awesome organizer.

Here are several things that are helpful:

  • Excitement
  • 1 or 2 other people who can help you get word out to local community
  • A few hours a week leading up to the weekend for pre-workshop planning
  • Availability the weekend of the workshop
  • Some degree of organizational/logistical tendencies (or a co-organizer who is like that)
  • Ability to give a short presentation (or a co-organizer whose willing to)
  • Having attended a prior workshop as a student, teacher, volunteer, or observer.

Time commitment

The time commitment varies wildly based on where you're organizing and the number of workshops that have already happened in your area. Since there are workshops every month in San Francisco, the meta-organizing team there has a stable of companies that are happy to host. If you're forging new, exciting ground, finding a venue, sponsors, students, and volunteers will take longer. The organizing cookbook has suggestions for where to look for those things.

The amount of time you'll need to budget will also depend on how you and your co-organizer divide the responsibilities. Everyone organizing should plan on devoting their Friday night and most of Saturday to the workshop, and at least a few hours a week during the month before the workshop to visiting the space, ordering food, and communicating with students and volunteers.

Mentorship & support available

Although it is a lot of little details to deal with, if it's your first time organizing we'll hook you up with a mentor to answer questions and help guide you. That can be remote mentoring, if an experienced local organizer/mentor isn't available.

If you are interested in organizing a workshop, or even just vaguely curious, contact hello@railsbridge.org and our volunteerswill be very happy to talk to you about it. You can also create an issue on the RailsBridge Organizing GitHub repo and we will gladly help you out!

Already planning?

If you're raring to go, and have already got your workshop planning underway, go you! That's amazing. Here are a couple of suggestions and requests:

  • Use Bridge Troll, our event management software. It'll make RSVPs and dividing up the class much, much easier.
  • Side benefit of Bridge Troll: your event will automatically be displayed on the RailsBridge.org website.
  • If you haven't already, join the mailing list and let the community know that your workshop is in the works. We like to help spread the word (and also keep a tally of the workshops happening in the world).

Workshop Requirements

A RailsBridge workshop has a few special things about it:

  • It is free.
  • It reaches out to one or more groups that are underrepresented in tech. We have a tradition of allowing other people to attend as a guest of a person who the workshop is reaching out to, but that is totally optional. The important thing is that the workshop brings more diverse people into tech in a welcoming, supportive environment.

If you are running an event that does not meet both of those requirements, you are welcome to use the RailsBridge curriculum, but your event can't be called a RailsBridge workshop.