Published on 14 March 2016 by

We're excited to announce that for our fourth straight year, we will be managing a program designed specifically to boost attendance at PuppetConf by underrepresented members of the tech community.

We're offering some free PuppetConf tickets, and in addition, we will offer hotel and travel sponsorship for some speakers and attendees whose organizations can't (or won't) pay their travel expenses.

It's important to us to not just invite diverse members of our community to PuppetConf, but also to welcome and engage everyone in the community conversation. We hope we've sparked your interest, and that you'll consider joining us.

Speaker travel sponsorships — submit a talk by 2 May

If you are from an underrepresented group, and you have a PuppetConf talk proposal accepted, and finances are a barrier to participating in PuppetConf, please apply for financial support. You can do this by checking the appropriate box when you fill out the CFP.

Not sure what you'd like to talk about? The CFP outlines some of the topics we're looking for. While Puppet is a core focus of PuppetConf (no surprise there), we're also looking for talks on topics such as:

  • Introductory topics for getting started with Puppet, modules, and other Puppet-related technologies (think AWS, Azure, DSC, Kubernetes, OpenStack, VMware ... and whatever else you have Puppet working with).
  • Future infrastructure topics — how you’re helping your organization adopt practices and workflows around technologies like Vault, Consul, etcd, Mesos, Kubernetes, and related technologies.
  • Using Puppet to solve problems around release management, continuous delivery, application release automation, change control and more.
  • DevOps best practices around automation, culture, measurement and sharing.
  • Security and compliance practices for streamlining the audit process, responding to incidents, automating compliance processes, and detecting and responding to threats.
  • Cloud topics, including adoption, management, portable workloads, SaaS, PaaS, IaaS and hybrid deployments.
  • Advanced tips and tricks for using Puppet, PuppetDB, Razor, Facter, etc.
  • People-related topics around recruiting, management, team building, career development and collaboration.

If you want to get an idea of what PuppetConf talks are like, visit the PuppetConf 2015 video page, which includes a list of recommended sessions.

We've had a great variety of talks in the past that don’t fit neatly into the types described above, but that were extremely popular. We'd love more talk proposals this year that also are compelling but don't fit neatly into stated categories. For example:

Now that you know better what we're looking for, go submit your talk proposal by 2 May.

Free tickets + travel sponsorships

We're pleased to offer some free PuppetConf 2016 tickets and travel sponsorships for people from groups underrepresented in technology, including, but by no means limited to, people of color, women, LGBTQ people, and people of varying abilities. We will select recipients based on interest in Puppet and related technologies. These tickets will help people who are excited about Puppet, but don't have the means to attend, join in the fun and learning at PuppetConf. You can apply for a ticket with this form.

If you aren't interested for yourself, but you know someone who would like to attend PuppetConf, please pass this information on. We also welcome your feedback on this process as we work to improve our conference for everyone, every year.

Free tickets for organizations promoting diversity in tech

We have some free tickets for organizations focused on increasing diversity in tech. The intent is for these organizations to distribute the tickets amongst their members, to bring people to PuppetConf we might not get to meet otherwise. If you're part of an organization that promotes diversity in tech, please reach out to diversity@puppetlabs.com. We look forward to meeting even more new people through this program.

Sponsor opportunities

Sponsors are a key part of PuppetConf, and we want to include them in our diversity efforts. If you are a sponsor, and you want to help support additional free tickets and travel for members of underrepresented groups, please talk with your Puppet Labs contact. If your company hasn’t yet signed up to sponsor, but wants to, check out our sponsorship opportunities.

We hope to see you at PuppetConf

We’re going to have a fantastic event in the beautiful city of San Diego, California, and we hope to see you there either as a speaker or attendee. Once again, we encourage you to submit a talk, register to attend, or apply for a free ticket.

We want PuppetConf to feel warm and welcoming for everyone, so we include a variety of social meetups for different groups, ensure physical accessibility, and make sure to provide a variety of beverages and food choices. We also take our code of conduct very seriously. We actively communicate the code and our expectations to speakers and participants, and we provide education for our staff to make sure they understand how to support and reinforce a safe and inclusive experience for everyone at all times.

Want to hear more about PuppetConf from the perspective of past attendees? We recommend Greg Greenlee's post, The Awesomeness that was PuppetConf, or Elizabeth Krumbach Joseph's post on her experiences at PuppetConf 2014. We hope to see you in San Diego this year!

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