Full-time Mom Becomes Full-stack Web Developer | Graduate Spotlight

Nov 18, 2020
Jessica Grande


Kelley Crittenden of Web Development Cohort 41

Kelley Crittenden of Web Development Cohort 41 was a stay-at-home mom for 15 years and a preschool teacher for the past 4 years. “While I was challenging others at work, I myself didn’t feel challenged,” she shares. 

Kelley began searching for opportunities to learn something new when her daughter came home with a web  application she built at a STEM camp. While helping her daughter add onto the application, Kelley fell in love with coding and discovered Nashville Software School (NSS) soon after. 

“I love being creative, problem solving and being challenged,” she smiles. “Learning software development was the perfect solution.” 


Kelley shares that her favorite part about her NSS experience was the accountability she experienced in her cohort from her peers and instructors. 

“It is just a wealth of knowledge between your instructors and your peers. Everyone is so helpful. No one has ever turned anyone down for solving problems,” she explains. 

Just to breathe, take breaks and remember there is life outside of class.


Kelley’s front-end capstone, Make My Developpe, is an application inspired by her daughter’s ballet training during studio closures due to COVID-19. “[The studio’s closure] left her training at home, mostly on her own, for months,” Kelley explains.  “During this time, she struggled to keep track of her own ballet training workouts.” Mom to the rescue! Kelley’s application helps dancers stay on track with their workouts and documents what workouts they need to do each day. Kelley built Make My Developpe with React.js and a JSON database.

Tails of Joy is Kelley’s back-end capstone she built using ASP.NET, C#, React.js, and SQL Server.The admin side of the application is reserved for animal shelters and rescues to promote their animals available for adoption while the user side of the application allows people to browse through available animals to find the perfect pet for their family. 


Since graduating, Kelley is working on taking a deeper dive into C# and SQL. “I don’t think you can ever know enough in this profession,” she says. “So there’s going to be a lot of continued learning [for me].” 

Kelley also shared that it is important for her to show her kids that it is possible to be a full-time mom and also have a full-time career. You go, Kelley! 

Learn more about Kelley by visiting her website or listening to her podcast.

Check out all the recent grads at Web Development Cohort 41's class website and hear the graduates share their experience at NSS and capstone projects in their podcasts below.

Topics: Student Stories, Hiring?, Web Development