As the host of the world’s largest open source community, GitHub has seen the growth of thousands of open source projects since its creation. Free and open source software provides the foundation for technologies we use daily, like Mozilla Firefox, 7-Zip, Linux, and even more tools that developers use to create the software we benefit from. The world really does run on open source, and that’s why we want to show it some love this Valentine’s Day.

Open source = open world

Git, GitHub, and open source projects make it possible for people sitting at different sides of the world to learn from each other and make better software.

-Campus Expert @Mishuvs

Contributing to open source software is a great way to continue growing as a developer or to gain experience before your first job. Students who contribute to open source projects get an opportunity to collaborate with developers of every level, and make meaningful changes to tools and services that run the world. They also get to join international communities that provide support for them throughout their careers.

Contributions beyond code

For anyone looking to get started, documentation is the best place. You start having some idea about what’s going on, and gradually you can step up your game and contribute code or even deliver talks and workshops!

-Campus Expert @kindavishal

Your first contribution doesn’t need to be a brand new feature—it’s okay to start small. Contributions to open source projects don’t even have to be code. You can create art for new logos, help with usability testing, or add new information to the project’s documentation.

Learn more about what you can bring to a project with our guide for first-time contributors. We have plenty of resources to help you find projects, or check out what other people are doing in the community.

We ❤️ open source

Show open source projects some love this Valentine’s Day. If you’re a verified GitHub Education student or faculty member, write a valentine to your first open source contribution with #OpenSourceValentine for a chance to win a GitHub hoodie. Tweet @GitHubEducation with #OpenSourceValentine and a link to your repository by February 28, at 12 am PT to enter.

Send us your valentine