Tag Archives: DevBootcamp

March 28 – May 25

I just graduated Dev Bootcamp! The last 10 weeks have been a grind – late nights, long weekends, caffeine addictions renewed — but it has been a total blast!

I can, with full confidence, call myself a web-developer. I have even tinkered around with mobile iOS development (something I will be diving deeper into over the next few weeks and beyond). I feel totally freed to build the technology I can imagine and desire to see built. I am excited to take these skills to Northwestern and use them alongside what I learn in my classes to hopefully start a business (we’ll see!)

Reflecting on Dev Bootcamp (and perhaps the bootcamp experience in general), I do have a few thoughts:

  1. Learning how to code is the tip of the iceberg. There are SO many technologies, dev tools, APIs, libraries, languages, etc. to use. Part of the challenge in building anything is not only knowing how to build that tech, but also knowing what to use to get it done in the best way given your goals.
  2. Your portfolio (what you’ve built) is more important than a resume. Recruiters aren’t going to care you’re a smooth talker if you have nothing on your GitHub to show examples of your code. For the most part I think this is great (but may make it harder for my cohort mates to get their foot in the door).
  3. Bootcamps teach you a lot, but to be successful, you have to own your own learning (and recruiting process thereafter). This probably applies much more broadly than computer science.
  4. One of the biggest benefits of going to a bootcamp is the connections you make among your cohort. And, I had the BEST COHORT EVER!

Want to see what I’ve been building? Check out my website or my GitHub. And, feel free to hit me up if you have specific questions about DBC. Happy to dive in deeper with those interested!


After graduation I headed back to Orlando for my cousin’s graduation and a friend’s wedding. So far it has been a nice break as I figure out how best to change gears now that bootcamp is done.

I need to prepare for Northwestern (I start classes on 6/20!), but also figure out how to fit coding and writing into that (still digging in on iOS and still querying agents for Sandwatcher). Even though DBC is over, I am still feeling stressed by all I want to do. I know I’ll need to prioritize eventually, but right now I am having a hard time letting any one project / pursuit go.

March 20 – March 27

First week of Dev Bootcamp onsite = DONE

We spent much of this first week reviewing a lot of what we’d learned in Phase 0 (the remote program before arriving onsite). In some ways this was good and in other ways it left me eager for the pace to pick up. At least now, I feel really competent at Ruby.

I do hope that next week and the following 2 months are filled with greater challenges (I suspect they will be given what I see the cohorts ahead of us working on). I also hope our lectures become more focused on the ecosystem around coding (great: I can write up some good code and save it in a ruby file, but then how do I turn this into a gem or an app or a program with some sort of user interface). I want to learn the practical parts of programming.


Otherwise the week was good. I didn’t realize how challenging it would be for me to be around so many people all the time (#introvertlife), but the Caltrain is actually super manageable so I was able to recharge at home with Ryan more nights than I had anticipated.

I also got to celebrate my best friend’s (Chris from WashU!) engagement. He and his wonderful fiancee, Lisa, had a small engagement party at R&G Lounge in SF (an amazing Chinese restaurant). The food and company were stellar. I cannot wait for bachelorette party / wedding fun! Who knew I would be a grooms[wo]men before ever being a bridesmaid?

I hope as my time in DBC progresses I am still able to see friends and family, get back to some writing, and really push my knowledge on the practical CS front. Will keep y’all posted!


December 7 – December 20

These last few weeks have been great!

I’ve gotten to see all my friends in the Bay (even crashing Khan Academy’s holiday party with Eli):


Got both some great advice re: business school (thank you Jason and Arif!) and some great news re: admissions (and scholarships!). My top two choices are Wharton and Kellogg (their MMM program!). I will be visiting both schools in late Jan / early Feb and deciding where I’ll be shortly after!

Prior to speaking with Jason and Arif, I had thought being unsure of why I was going to business school was a reason not to go. Jason pointed out that the opposite was more likely true: if you are unsure of your next professional step, going to a place where you can experience lots of different things will probably be more helpful than choosing a job and hoping it is a fit. If my thinking changes on this though, I am sure I will let everyone know.

Anyway, DevBootcamp has also been going well! We’ve done a lot of html and css (I think we are about to pivot to ruby). I’ve made a cute little website for class (it isn’t perfect, but, hey, DBC told us not to spend more than half a day pulling it together). I am sure we’ll be adding to the page (/actually adding pages that are missing) soon ….


Oh … and how could I forget Star Wars! The Force Awakens was AWESOME! I am already planning to see it again in two days. Great film! JJ did an amazing job! I only have two small issues (highlight the space below to see what those were (desktop browsers only) — SPOILERS):

1) I really liked how Kylo Ren turns out to be a pretty weak sith (he isn’t even a Sith Lord — hence the lack of ‘Darth’). Kylo is just a kid who broke under the stress of his legacy and suffers from an intense inferiority complex that causes some significant mental instability that Snoke was able to take advantage of. I can believe that Snoke taught Kylo the mind-torture trick (and that Kylo is kind of a one-trick-pony on that front), BUT I think the blaster-freeze at the beginning was dumb and undercuts the rest of Kylo’s character. 

2) C’mon! You’re telling me when Rey, Finn, and Chewie return from the Starkiller base, Leia hugs REY first over Han and not CHEWIE?? Yeah no.


Well, next stop is London for the holidays! And after Ryan is coming back with me to Orlando to meet Nancy. Hope your holiday season has been and continues to be great!

November 11 – December 6

Yeah yeah … I am the worst at blogging.

BUT, to be fair to me, a lot has happened.

Well, first I had my pitstop in Singapore for a bschool interview. Besides the fact that Singapore is generally awesome (see life-size x-wing from their airport below as further evidence), I also ended up running into an old friend from a 2010 internship I did in Cleveland, Mississippi (!?!?). It was great to catch up and unreal that we ran back into each other in Singapore!

My big takeaway from this trip was pretty surprising though: I don’t think I want to go to business school. It is ironic that I came to this conclusion at the b-school’s mixer for candidates they held the night of my interview. The more and more I talked to other students and alum, the more I realized how unclear I have been on why I want to go back to school. One alum in particular I talked with (another ex-McK BA) really really encouraged arriving at b-school with a clear idea of what you want to get out of it. He said that if I was unsure, b-school would do nothing to clarify my thinking. This makes me feel like I need to do more exploring in the real world by working at more places before considering b-school. Oops. Oh well … better to have figured this out after applying than after attending (and paying tuition! yikes!)


Back to China!

My last two weeks in Shanghai were busy (some ways good, some ways bad). I FINISHED my book! Yay! I have since started revisions and will be ready to share before the end of the year (goal = achieved!). I also, sadly, tweeked my knee while crossfitting and was miss-limpy for my last few days in the country. This, my need for good internet for Dev Bootcamp, and a general homesickness spurred me to bag my last stop in Thailand and opt instead to go home (USA).

Which I did (Orlando anyway) for my birthday 12/1 😉

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And GOOD NEWS: My knee injury does NOT require surgery (I tore my meniscus, but the doctor says it is in an area that gets a lot of blood flow — he thinks it will heal on its own in 4-6 weeks :D).

Now I am back in the Bay Area, starting Dev Bootcamp (the remote portion — I *know* basic git now!), and finishing Sandwatcher. Yay!


Traveling was wonderful. I learned a lot about myself, the world, and what I want out of life. I met some incredible people and saw some incredible places. Through it all I’ve come to not only appreciate home more, but also to appreciate the my privilege more. After DBC, I will be looking for work again (probably in the Bay to stay near friends, boyfriend, and the tech industry) and hope to find a job that not only is in tech, but has something to do with making tech accessible to more people (no matter their income, race, or location worldwide) – see ‘privilege’ thing earlier.

Want to know more about backpacking through asia? writing a novel? living cheaply without income? the benefits and costs of quitting your job at 25 to do something crazy? Hit me up!

Otherwise, I’ll probably keep this blog up and running while I do Dev Bootcamp (why not?) and after while I look for a job ….. Also I will try to be a better blogger (maybe calendar reminders would help ? :P)