Written by Deborah Carbo, member of the Mainframe Open Education Core team and Director of Mainframe Product Management and Strategy at Broadcom
I’ve always been captivated by the idea of people coming together and sharing their talents for the betterment of all. I’m inspired when it actually happens. That’s why I am proud to be part of a new movement right here in the world of mainframe. I have a strong desire to leave a legacy for those who will walk in my footsteps. As a mainframe expert, this is a core component of my personal and my professional identity so I intend to remain part of our lifelong mainframe community. I am working to support mainframe skill development now, while my career is in full swing, and I absolutely will continue beyond my retirement.
Mainframe Open Education (MOE), a project announced last fall by the Open Mainframe Project (OMP), is bringing the concept of open source to Mainframe education and training.
Mainframe Open Education’s mission is to deliver to mainframe users a convenient platform to create or donate learning tools, so we cultivate skills, and we allow for knowledge sharing and community contributions. This effort being a community-based program, is the differentiating feature, offering a distinctive difference from all other sources of education. It is the collective body of knowledge within our generous community that matters, creating a groundswell of people who are leading the way for future mainframe technicians. By participating, you’ll contribute mainframe learning roadmaps and educational materials to a central non-profit organization (OMP-MOE), you’ll be guided based on job roles with the greatest need. Let us place community priority to meet the most critical pain points for hiring managers today, from introduction to deep technical skill. The material you contribute will be curated and offered back to the community at no cost, or at a very low cost, if labs and system access require a small contribution. Mainframe users will be able to tap into the enormous tribal knowledge gained from decades of experience by thousands of mainframe veterans. The joy of it comes from our success in transferring these skills to the next generation, all within a trusted platform.
If you’re a hiring manager seeking Mainframe talent, or if you’re an employee looking to expand your skills, you’ll find real value here. And, in true community spirit, you’ll help that value grow for yourself and others if you join and contribute!
A key tenant of this project is the quality and ease of use of the offering. To ensure that the learning roadmaps and other materials available through MOE are practical, focused, and easy to navigate, a MOE board of experts will review submissions and curate content that adheres to quality standards for the end-user, all cataloged within a consumable learning roadmap.
We are in phase one of this project now and already have organizations such as Lloyds Banking Group, Ensono, IBM, and Broadcom on board and contributing to MOE. In a recent panel discussion about Mainframe Open Education at the SHARE Virtual Summit (video below), Andrew Sampson, Mainframe Lead of DevOps Center of Excellence at Lloyds Banking Group, points out that the mainframe community is innovating in many ways to speed the pace of change on the mainframe, and this includes educational tools to help quickly educate and onboard new mainframers. Often the most useful educational tools are developed by the engineers who actually do the work and document their best practices, and an open education approach enables that wealth of mainframe expertise within organizations is open to anyone and that it can be easily shared across the mainframe community.
Remember how Linus Torvalds had a vision for a better operating system? Many shared his vision and joined his quest to build Linux. The rest is history. That is when innovation happens. Ideas are sparked for more methods and educational tools to empower the next generation of mainframe talent!
Join the MOE movement today. Attend our community meetings here and complete this simple survey to help guide and inform our framework.
Fill out this survey by May 31: https://share.hsforms.com/1606ViDw4Qh2Zhhc9rYIBhg4tvhy!