Graduate Stories

Meet Molly, Software Engineer for Spreedly

From Program Manager to Back-End Engineer

Pri­or to piv­ot­ing to tech, Mol­ly, a grad­u­ate of Elon Uni­ver­si­ty, worked for the Muse­um of Life and Sci­ence in Durham. She shift­ed from role to role, dri­ven by her desire to keep learning.

But while her work at the Muse­um was ful­fill­ing, Mol­ly found that after six years, it real­ly lacked a fun­da­men­tal moti­vat­ing fac­tor for her— as she jumped into new roles in hopes of con­tin­u­ing to grow her skills, the space for her learn­ing was lim­it­ed. Soon­er or lat­er, she would fig­ure it all out, and work, in what­ev­er role she inhab­it­ed, would become mechan­i­cal again.

That’s when she real­ized she want­ed to make a career change.

“My wife was in the Iron Yard’s first cohort in Durham,” she tells us, ​“So I had a very close expe­ri­ence with what it’s like liv­ing through [code school], but also what the out­come is like. The flex­i­bil­i­ty [that] is offered in the career is real­ly what attract­ed me. [The thing about soft­ware devel­op­ment is if] you get a job and you don’t like it any­more, there’s so much flex­i­bil­i­ty. Maybe you don’t like it because you don’t find [the] par­tic­u­lar tech­nol­o­gy [you’re work­ing with] inter­est­ing. [Then, you can just work] in a dif­fer­ent tech­nol­o­gy. Or maybe you don’t like it because you’re not iden­ti­fy­ing with the main pur­pose or mis­sion of the busi­ness [you’re work­ing for]. You could find anoth­er oppor­tu­ni­ty to write soft­ware in some­thing that moti­vates you mission-wise.”

I think coming from a place where I was feeling kind of stuck and with few options, I was really attracted to [a career in tech].

Molly Brown

Software Engineer

Now, Mol­ly is a Soft­ware Engi­neer for Spreed­ly, a pay­ments API where she works pri­mar­i­ly with Ruby on Rails and Ruby, and is involved with con­sid­er­a­tions for secu­ri­ty and han­dling secure data. “[In my cur­rent role,] I think real­ly hard all day,” she says, ​“So it’s very stim­u­lat­ing and real­ly sat­is­fy­ing at the end of each day, [know­ing that] even if I made small amounts of progress, I learned some­thing new, whether about the tech­nol­o­gy I’m using or about our par­tic­u­lar code­base, or a tool that I’m using. I’m always grow­ing [my] knowl­edge. [Which is great for me, because that’s] what I am moti­vat­ed the most by.”

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Go from potential to professional with us

For Mol­ly, Momen­tum gave the oppor­tu­ni­ty not just to jump-start her tech career, but also, to begin a process of con­tin­u­al learn­ing for the rest of her life. ​“What I came out [of Momen­tum] with and what, I think, is the most impor­tant thing I prac­tice, is learn­ing how to fig­ure things out, and learn­ing how to research some­thing, how to test some­thing, how to inves­ti­gate some­thing. [I learned] specif­i­cal­ly how to answer ques­tions and how to solve prob­lems that come at me in tech­no­log­i­cal spaces.”

For that, she’s grate­ful. Look­ing for­ward, she says, ​“I’m most excit­ed that I’ll nev­er stop learn­ing and grow­ing. There’s so much oppor­tu­ni­ty for me to con­tin­ue to grow skills and to learn new things.” It’s a bright out­look, and we couldn’t be hap­pi­er for her.

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