Each month, we highlight a volunteer who has gone above and beyond in contributing to the CTD community. This month’s volunteer is Tammy Collinse, a mentor in our Cassiopeia Intro to Programming class. As a class mentor, Tammy leads weekly mentor sessions for small groups of students, helping answer questions about the assignments and resolve blockers.
Tammy shared about her experience with Code the Dream:
Tell us a little about yourself.
“I live in NYC, but I’m originally from sunny South Africa! I am currently spending my time in the volunteer space in organizations in a capacity that is dedicated to tech or education surrounding coding, and that most recent one being with Code The Dream! I had my first introduction to programming in high school where I coded in Java for about 3 years. I was very lucky to be introduced to the world of tech from a very young age, but getting to college, I decided to pursue a different route in studies and went the route of Finance and Business Administration. Fast forward to 3 years ago, I found myself immigrating to the United States and really getting the chance to essentially start over. I was able to revisit some old passions, old strengths and talents that I had long forgotten and essentially harness them again to build an ideal career for myself as I start this brand new journey, and that’s when I reignited my passion for coding since my early college days but more so centered around web development this time. And I have not looked back since!”
Why did you get involved with Code the Dream?
“A big reason why I wanted to get into the educational aspect of tech was because I saw what coding did for me. Coding allowed me to empower myself with an AMAZING skill that directly translates to a high growth and sought after career path. Getting involved with CTD was a no brainer as it allowed learning to code to become more accessible to those who otherwise would not stereotypically be represented in the tech space. As a woman of color in this industry, seeing how coding and tech related skills has the ability to change lives has made me eager to share my experience, knowledge, understanding and skills with those who look like me or come from a similar demographic.”
What has been meaningful about your experience with Code the Dream?
“I love the work I do in this space. Something that has been so meaningful has been actually seeing so many of the students grow. A lot of the times, they don’t give themselves grace or reflect on how far they’ve come. We’re approaching the end of the cohort and seeing how all of these students that have started with us since day 1, have grown to be such great developers is amazing! From writing ‘console.log(“hello world”) to building interactive web pages! Watching how they went from passively feeling overwhelmed to helping me troubleshoot and debug, using rules and methodologies, syntax that we’ve harnessed and learned from the beginning is such a great feeling. Seeing the tenacity of the students to honestly build their skills for the better has been a very fulfilling experience.
I am very proud to be a part of this space. Code The Dream’s mission of making skills for tech accessible for all absolutely wonderful. I have been very blessed to share in this experience with the CTD community!”
Several students shared why they appreciate Tammy:
“Tammy always offers a different way to think about things while struggling with certain concepts which I really appreciate. She also makes me feel comfortable to ask any questions by being kind and thoughtful in addressing all student questions.”Kenya P., Intro to Programming Student.
“I enjoy and love working with Tammy. She is a great teacher and I love how she teaches the concepts we are reading in this course. I am really grateful to have her as my mentor. I was feeling unsure about coding and she was so supportive and understanding. <3”Yeni, Intro to Programming Student.
I really appreciate how Tammy has a lesson plan. So even when people don’t have a ton of questions to bring up, we are still working together through things in a way that feels useful.Rebecca S., Intro to Programming Student
Tammy is very good at explaining concepts but not spoon-feeding the answers which is perfect for me to learn!Pankti R., Intro to Programming Student
Tammy is great at building rapport with the students.Simon S., Intro to Programming Student