One of the things that I do outside of work is running a meetup group centered around FreeCodeCamp. It being a FreeCodeCamp group, we get a lot of newer devs who are looking to cut their teeth with programming and be employed into their first job. What I find are the fastests ways to learn and gain competency is through project work and pairing with other developers while working.
It would make sense to get the newer devs to work together on a group project while providing real world value. However, I’ve tried this in the past and didn’t see much success. Either we lose interest from members or the project itself is too overwhelming and ultimately the members abandon the project due to loss of interest.
I realize that there is platforms like Chingu Cohorts which has several success stories out of it, however this is based out of a remote medium and I don’t feel as though it could be something that could be mapped to an in-person, community setting.
Is there anyone that was in a similar situation and had a strategy to maintain the group of newer devs without them being too overwhelmed? I don’t want to say “Hey! Who wants to do a to-do app?” because I don’t think newer folks will see the value in it but at the same time they shouldn’t be building the next innovating application where they suspect they are being used for free labor.