Alumni Spotlight: Kimmy Bird | Stories From The Hackery

Apr 10, 2024
Jessica Grande

We’re catching up with some of our alumni and sharing their advice for our students and recent graduates on our podcast, Stories from The Hackery. Listen wherever you get your podcasts.

Kimmy Bird shares her NSS Journey on the official Nashville Software School (NSS) podcast, Stories from the Hackery. From her time as a product owner at an international education company to now working as an Elixir backend developer in Germany, hear about Kimmy’s path to belonging in tech! 

Embracing the Tech Experience and Community

Kimmy's journey into the world of tech began with a realization during her tenure as a product owner. While collaborating with software developers on building an online course, she became fascinated by coding and the joy her colleagues found in their work. Despite her background as an English major and initial apprehension about entering the tech field, Kimmy's curiosity led her to Nashville Software School.

“I was really nervous because of the cliché of software developers,” she recalls. “I was really unsure about, is tech going to welcome me? Am I going to fit in? But once you get out into the real world and ignore, you know, movies, everybody's just pretty normal and friendly and people come from all different backgrounds.”

During her time at NSS, Kimmy embraced the challenges of learning new skills, even as a self-professed non-techie. She recalls the supportive environment at NSS, where she wasn't alone in her journey as many of her peers also came from non-technical backgrounds. 

 “The [tech] community for me has been a really positive experience for me.” - Kimmy Bird, Full-time Web Development Cohort 22 Alumna

Life After Bootcamp

Kimmy's transition into the tech industry didn't end with NSS. She soon found herself working as a full-stack developer at Nashville-based healthcare company, Aspire, where she gained invaluable experience in building products and launching new features. Reflecting on her journey, she emphasizes the importance of understanding the fundamentals of software development, regardless of the specific language or technology stack.

Advice for Aspiring Developers: Trust the Process and Stay Open-Minded

For aspiring developers, Kimmy offers invaluable advice based on her own experience. She encourages individuals to explore coding through online tutorials for introductory programs like NSS's Web Development Jumpstart, emphasizing the importance of discovering one's interests and staying open-minded throughout the learning process. “See if you like [coding] first, maybe do an online tutorial, some sort of coding thing. I did the Jumpstart program that was really helpful,” she says.  And if you decide that NSS is the right program for you, she encourages anyone attending an NSS bootcamp to “go in with an open mind.” 

“Anybody can learn how to code and be a software developer. It's not like this mysterious thing, like we make it out to be.” - Kimmy Bird, Full-time Web Development Cohort 22 Alumna

International Opportunities in Tech: Kimmy's Journey to Germany

Kimmy's tech journey took an international turn when she and her family decided to move to Germany. Leveraging her skills as a software developer, she found opportunities in the thriving tech scene of Berlin. She highlights the international nature of the tech community, where English serves as the primary language and diverse perspectives enrich the industry. 

Gratitude and Acknowledgments: Kimmy's Shoutouts to NSS and Beyond

Near the end of the podcast, Kimmy expresses her gratitude to the NSS community and mentors who supported her throughout her journey. From Steve Brownlee to Ashley Canino and her fellow cohort members, she acknowledges the pivotal role they played in her success. She emphasizes the importance of building relationships and staying connected with the NSS network, which continues to inspire and uplift her.

Thanks for sharing your NSS Journey with us, Kimmy! We look forward to seeing where your journey takes you next!


00:00  Introduction

01:31 Transitioning to Tech

04:05 Learning Experience and Overcoming Challenges

08:33 Career Transition and NSS Support 

13:36 International Opportunities in Tech

16:31 Gratitude and Acknowledgments

20:43 Final thoughts

21:20 Outro

Topics: Alumni, Web Development