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Re: DebConf bursary deadline for GSoC/Outreachy?

* Vishal Gupta <vishstar88@gmail.com> [2018-04-05 20:10:19 +0530]:

> Hello mentors,
> Despite Google choosing to officially announce the candidates only on 23rd
> April can mentors unofficially announce candidates sooner than 23rd ?
> Hence interns wishing to attend DebConf who'll need flight tickets could
> ask for lesser reimbursement by booking earlier.

Results of the DebConf bursary process aren't expected before the very end of
April; more likely the beginning of May. I don't think the GSoC mandated
deadlines will be a problem for us.

The standard process for travel expenses reimbursed by Debian goes like this:

 - You request approval of the expense (or you get granted a bursary).
 - You book the travel and pay for it.
 - You show up at the event for which your expenses claim has been approved.
 - You submit documents for reimbursement during/after the event.
 - You get reimbursed after the event ends.

If you submit a full reimbursement package on the first try (which around 90%
of people succeed in doing), the reimbursement can take from a week to a few

We are very aware that a few months with that much cash floating around is a
long time, and we're trying our best to minimize the turnaround time, but it
mostly boils down to volunteers doing the bookkeeping/accounting work. This is
somewhat far off the core competencies of people who usually get involved in
Free Software organizations, and is therefore a task that not a lot of people
are doing. Compound to that the issue that handling money needs us to put a lot
of trust in the people who do it and you get the situation we're in.

Finally post-hoc reimbursements as a default process are somewhat necessary as
we've had some issues in the past with people not showing up after tickets had
been advanced for them.

Of course, we (DebConf bursaries team, bursaries@debconf.org) will try to
accommodate the specific issues of people who come forward and let us know they
can't make it at all if they don't get upfront support, on a case by case basis.

I hope this gives some more insight on the opaque processes :)
Nicolas Dandrimont

BOFH excuse #185:
system consumed all the paper for paging

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