Jordy was working as a registered nurse in a NYC hospital before deciding to reskill with Coding Temple’s full-time online bootcamp. Jordy walks us through his capstone project, inkVue, a Python-based web application that helps users find the right tattoo artist for them. Jordy highlights what he loved about Coding Temple, from learning full stack programming in a tight-knit cohort to the personalized career services that has prepared him for the tech job hunt.
What inspired you to make a career change from nursing to software engineering this year?
Nursing played a huge role in my life — I met patients from all different backgrounds and demographics, heard their unique stories, and was an advocate for those who don't have a voice. It allowed me to work with an interdisciplinary team with the common goal of returning patients to the lifestyle they desire.
Nursing was a very rewarding career, but was very strenuous on my body! The tasks involved moving patients, which included transferring and preventative care. Software engineering felt like a career in which I could utilize not only the critical thinking skills I gained from nursing, including teamwork, collaboration, and communications skills, but also make a lasting impression. Plus, it’s less strenuous on my body!
There are so many coding bootcamps out there now — why did you choose Coding Temple?
Before making a serious transition to a new career, it's important to find the right bootcamp. It’s an investment and a major commitment. I did my research and there are definitely a lot of bootcamps to choose from! Rather than going for what’s most popular, I took into consideration many online reviews and cohort size to support my decision.
The smaller cohort size at Coding Temple assured me that I’d have more opportunities to meet 1:1 with my instructors and that my questions would be heard. I was sold on Coding Temple after reading all the rave reviews of their instructors.
Overall, what did you learn at Coding Temple?
Since this was an online bootcamp, did you feel connected to your cohort?
One of the best outcomes I got from Coding Temple was the connection to my cohort and my instructors, which I think had to do with the smaller cohort size. I still talk to my instructor and peers about career advice and questions on apps we’re building. Our journey together didn’t end at graduation — it’s starting from here!
Did you build a lot of projects while in the bootcamp?
At Coding Temple, we built projects every weekend intended to reinforce everything we learned that week. For example, when we worked on the database SQL, we had a weekend project to build something that utilizes SQL.
Beyond the requirements, they pushed us to go further with our projects. Doing the bare minimum didn’t cut it. The cool thing about building these initial projects is that I can always go back in and iterate on them to use in my portfolio.
What did you build for your capstone project?
I built an app called inkVue that makes it easier to search for a tattoo artist. The problem I usually encounter when searching for a tattoo artist is having to sift through 30-50 tattoo shops in the area, find the individual artists, and look at their social media and their art style to find one that I like. My website seamlessly showcases local artists in one place, including their contact info and social media, and categorized by art style. For example, if I want a Japanese-style tattoo I can go on my website into the Japanese section and see all the artists, then filter them by location. This allows me to immediately see each artist and decide if I like them.
How much time were you given to build this capstone project?
The project itself took one week to build, but our instructors encouraged us to start as early as possible! The capstone project is introduced in the first week of bootcamp, and then we’re reminded of it in the middle of the program, which is when I started working on it. I didn’t want to put it off until the last week because I knew it would be a lot of work on top of learning the back end languages like SQL.
What are the main features of your capstone project?
The landing pad currently features ten categories of tattoo styles to help users narrow down their search. I’ll expand categories in the future — this is just my starting project. inkVue functions without creating a user profile, allowing users to discover artists and view their social media pages to save, follow, and contact them. Users can also sign up to create a profile where they can build a watch list to save their favorite artists.
What technologies and programming languages did you use to build this project?
Object-oriented programming is what defines a great application — it's used in any application that involves a lot of logic and is a very important topic to get used to. It plays a strong role in building amazing applications, and my project is an example of how object-oriented programming is utilized.
Did you use everything you learned at Coding Temple or did you have to learn any new technologies to build inkVue?
I learned the foundations at Coding Temple, but to go above and beyond I had to do a little more research. Coding Temple reinforces that self-learning is a big part of being a great developer. I'll continue to self-learn and research to find new products and ways to improve applications. Resources like Stack Overflow definitely helped me find ways to make something I want.
While building this application, inkVue, there was a lot that I wanted to do that wasn't covered in the bootcamp. Some examples consisted of researching 3rd party API documentation, documentation regarding using multiple forms on a single page rather than one, and importing modules that allowed me to use dropdown countries on this web application, all with guidance from my instructors. A bootcamp will teach the core principles but can’t get in-depth into everything you want to do. Coding Temple reinforced me to go above and beyond to do research myself.
What was your biggest challenge while building this project?
I wanted to be able to add artists to the database but I knew it was something I didn't have time to personally do, especially as this app was intended to represent artists globally. So I added a layer of self-sufficiency that solved my problem. inkVue lets tattoo artists register themselves to be displayed on the website. They can upload a display image for the gallery (safely uploaded in an API cloudinary), add their business email, social profiles, the categories they want to be associated with, and their geographic location.
Acceptance of registration as an artist is dependent on administrative approval, which happens on the back end. The admin can access a pending table of users requests where they can accept and reject submissions. I can also instantiate an artist based on their image URL from cloudinary’s API, their nickname, social, email, country, category that they want to be displayed in, and their user ID. Once an artist is accepted and instantiated, their profile enters the gallery. If for some reason I need to remove an instantiated artist, I can delete them from the database and they’ll no longer show up in the gallery.
When you ran into an issue as you were building your project, did the Coding Temple instructors help you?
As you learn, you can adapt your project so that you're prepared. Coding Temple doesn’t throw you into the wild -— they're very supportive. I definitely got 1:1 time to ask questions and get the help I needed to make something that I truly loved at the end of the day.
Did you showcase this project in a Demo Day at Coding Temple?
We had a Demo Day on our last day of the bootcamp. I presented this project, which I felt utilized everything I learned and was also something that I was passionate about and loved doing!
You’re on the job hunt now! Do you anticipate speaking about this final project during your job interviews?
How did Coding Temple prepare you for the job hunt?
This was an important factor in my enrolling at Coding Temple! Their job search curriculum is rigorous because they want you to get a job and will do anything it takes to make it happen.
Coding Temple hosts meetings where you can talk with alumni, they have Slack channels to practice interview questions, and people are sharing job opportunities left and right!
We have amazing instructors that help with weekly mock interviews for the job interview process. Once you get a job, they hold a weekly meeting in which you can talk about your experience. I definitely learned a lot from students who just got hired, like their own process to get that job. I love the Coding Temple alumni!
Since graduating from Coding Temple, what kinds of jobs do you feel prepared to apply for?
I feel qualified for full stack positions. We learned a lot of frontend design, back end, and even middleware, which encompasses all of what a full stack developer does. I feel confident in my capabilities to perform well in any of those roles.
Has your nursing background helped you as you learned software engineering?
In nursing, we utilize critical thinking skills, which transfers seamlessly into the logic-driven field of software engineering. Nursing has made me more aware of thinking outside the box, which is what you need to do in coding problems in job interviews.
Do you have any advice for future Coding Temple students? Anything you wish you had known before you started?
Impostor syndrome is real! It's okay to not know everything, both in the bootcamp and job hunting processes. I learned so much from stories of people who already have jobs. Take your time and just enjoy the journey. Take the time to practice and don’t get burnt out trying to feel prepared.
So far in your career change journey, was Coding Temple worth it for you?
I am so glad I joined Coding Temple. This is the start of a new journey in my life. I know it will take me places that I don't even know yet, but am excited to find out! I've learned this new skill that I couldn't have done without Coding Temple. I’m so excited for what’s to come.
Jess is the Content Manager for Course Report as well as a writer and poet. As a lifelong learner, Jess is passionate about education, and loves learning and sharing content about tech bootcamps. Jess received a M.F.A. in Writing from the University of New Hampshire, and now lives in Brooklyn, NY.
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