Sara Blevins: Learning to code

Sara Blevins: Learning to code

I was a kid, man, I wanted to be an
astronaut so bad. [CHUCKLES] And I wanted
to be a marine biologist. Then I wanted to go
into political science. I always had some grand dreams. My name is Sarah Blevins, and
I am from Knoxville, Tennessee. I have always had a passion
for technology, always. But I went to a small
school in a rural area. The extent of our
technical exposure was playing “Oregon
Trail” on old computers. And so it was few
and far between when I had access to those things. But when I did, it
was like Christmas. I didn’t even have a computer
in my house until 2010. I completed my
bachelor’s in February and it took me 18 years. [CHUCKLES] Sorry to laugh. It just seems like a long
time when I say it out loud. [LAUGHS] Someone close to
me was an engineer, and they always told me,
you think like an engineer. I was sitting in my room,
and they were pointing out this is HTML, this is a tag. I remember the moment vividly. And I thought, this is it. This is what I was meant to do. I found out that Udacity
and Google are offering developer scholarships. And right then I filled
it out, and I sent it off. I thought, if I get this,
my whole world could change. I am learning front
end web development. I love the structure of the
Udacity challenge course. I love that there’s a
live coding environment. There are forums. You can network with your peers. I can basically fit in
15-minute increments if that’s what I need to do. I can do it at night after
I put the boys to bed. There have been times I have
said to myself, OK, right foot next, left foot next. We work together as a family
to make sure I have time. Sometimes I’ll say,
you know, guys, I really need your help
tonight because Mom has some things to do that’s
going to better our lives. I get so into it. Sometimes I have
to remind myself to go to bed because I have
to go to work the next day. I love the feeling
of exhaustion that comes from working
myself mentally and solving problems in code. Code caters to that. It pushes what I’m
capable of, and I love it. I have been told that
it isn’t feminine to be in science or technology
or math, and I reject that. It makes me feel powerful
to be able to help build the world that I
live in, and that’s what being able to
program does for you.


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