Student writes code in competitive Google program


VANCOUVER, Wash. – Computer science graduate student Bo Wang is one of 1,192 applicants accepted to the Google Summer of Code program out of 5,999 proposals from 94 countries. David Chiu, assistant professor of computer science at Washington State University Vancouver, was selected as a mentor.

The global program offers students a $5,000 stipend to write computer code for open-source (available to the public for free) projects. It is designed to inspire young developers and give them the opportunity to do work related to their academic pursuits.

Wang’s project focuses on a mobile application for planning a field research trip and analyzing collected data upon return. It is specially designed for real-time community and event tracking.

“The user will be able to track other team members’ location and data collected status and share information with team members in a customized map interface,” he said.  


As a mentor, Chiu meets online regularly with students to advise n technical details; but ultimately design and implementation decisions are up to the students.

“Being a mentor is very rewarding,” he said. “You have the ability to work with extraordinary students building open-source tools to solve real-world computational problems.

“Such experience gives them an edge in the workforce,” he said, “which aligns with our goals as educators. Google Summer of Code also enables students and their mentors to form lasting relationships.”
Since 2011, four WSU Vancouver computer science students have participated in Google Summer of Code. One of the four has interned for Intel and two are software engineers for Web Trends and ForgeRock.

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