New Career Path Brings Full Circle Moments | Graduate Spotlight

Apr 13, 2021
Jessica Grande


After spending most of his career in banking and finance, Mario Campopiano and his wife were teaching English in Italy when they learned they were expecting their first child. This exciting news sparked his desire for a career change. “We knew particularly with a child we needed a more stable career,” he recalls. “I analyzed my resume to identify the things I enjoyed most/least from each job, and a theme was that I enjoy learning, I enjoy mentoring others, and I enjoy being in positions to identify problems and find solutions.” After a thorough Google search for jobs with all of those aforementioned qualities, Mario discovered that software development seemed to fit the bill. 

Mario spent the next few months learning and researching all he could when a friend from back home in Nashville, TN, suggested that he check out Nashville Software School. ”[I] decided to dip my toes in with a three week Jumpstart course. My eight month pregnant wife and I returned to the United States just five days before the Jumpstart began, and from there I was hooked.


During his time in Web Development Cohort 44, Mario felt he was being stretched intellectually “in a way I never have been before.” Although the work was difficult, he shares that he thoroughly enjoyed every second of his time learning to become a developer, particularly now that he can create web applications he needs for daily life. 

Mario shares that the hardest part of the course was beginning bootcamp just two weeks after his daughter was born. “Taking on a course as challenging and intensive as this is difficult enough, but trying to do it with a newborn definitely added a layer of difficulty,” he laughs. “At first this seemed like something that would hold me back, but ultimately I found that giving my brain time to "relax" helped me understand things even better than had I just plugged through [more code] for several extra hours.”


The idea for Mario’s front-end capstone project stemmed from his favorite hobby, writing. “I've submitted most of my stories to short story publications,” he explains. “Believe it or not there are actually several such publications, and each has very different criteria as far as open submission dates, word count requirements, genre, response time, etc., and it can be hard to keep it all straight.” Thus, Mario created Publish-Or-Perish (POP), an application that allows users to create notes and set goals for writing projects while keeping track of their submission status with relevant publication magazines. Mario used React and JavaScript to create POP. 

Mario’s back-end capstone project came “full circle” for him when he decided to create an application that he and his wife needed after they got married three years ago. “We talked about what we wanted to do for a budget and decided on using an app. We listed out everything we wanted, looked on the app store, and found that what we wanted didn't exist,” he smiles. “Well, for my backend capstone I finally made that app. It really felt like it all came full circle.”

Budget is designed for those who want to use an envelope-style budget system but don't necessarily want to carry cash everywhere. The application allows users to keep track of different spending categories, like recurring bills, log different purchases, payments and income, and shows you your current spending trends at a glance on the homepage. Mario created Budget using React, Python, and Django. 


Since graduating, Mario is excited to put some finishing touches on his back-end capstone before he deploys it to AWS. “After that, I have a project I'll be working on to build a tool that will help my mom (who is an insurance claims advocate) perform her job easier,” he shares. 

Since he enjoys both back-end and front-end development, Mario is looking forward to finding his first full-stack position as a software developer. 

I love studying languages and I have absolutely loved learning new programming languages. I look forward to being in a field where continual learning will give me the opportunity to always grow and challenge myself.

Learn more about Mario by visiting his website or listening to his podcast.

Check out all the recent grads at Full-time Web Development 44'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