Each year, Google Summer of Code puts hundreds of students to work on open source projects, and pays them for it. The Perl Foundation is proud to announce that it has been accepted as a sponsoring organization this year.
Students propose projects that they'd like to have funded, and are assigned a mentor who will help guide the student and project to completion. For students, this is a great way to contribute to open source, get experience working on real projects that you can put on a resume, and get paid for it. You'll be helping open source while helping yourself. For mentors, you'll also be helping open source, and helping a new programmer get his or her start.
Jonathan Leto's blog has links to find out more.