From Music Store Manager to Front-End Developer

How One Udacity Student Adapted to Unexpected Change, and Built a Great New Career

Front-End Developer

Life is full of unexpected events, and abrupt changes often challenge us to reflect on our goals and directions in life. The self-reflection one engages in, and the subsequent actions one takes, emerge as defining moments for our futures. Decisions made about education and learning in particular can have profound—and profoundly positive—effects on our lives.

Jake Gornall was working as a music store manager when his son was diagnosed with 22q11.2 Microdeletion Syndrome, a genetic disorder. His family’s future was suddenly uncertain; what did the coming days and years hold, and how would he prepare for them? Above all else, he knew he had to ensure his family would be supported. But he wasn’t confident that his current career could provide that support. What could he do?

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Hello, Saudi Arabia! Alsalamo Alekom, Saudi Arabia!

Today we are announcing the first Udacity Connect Campus launching in Saudi Arabia, with the long-term goal of helping talented learners across Saudi Arabia achieve their full potential in the technology sector.  This new program is made possible through the remarkable partnership of the MiSK Foundation, and under the patronage of His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed Bin Salman Bin Abdulaziz.  

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All I Ever Wanted In A Job: The Mangalambigai Sivaramakrishnan Story

Mangal, Udacity, Student Success

Returning to the workforce after taking time off is challenging, and the hurdles get progressively higher the longer you’re away. Technology presents unique obstacles in this regard, because in addition to the usual challenges of reentry, you also have to contend with the almost inevitable likelihood that your skills are out-of-date. For Mangalambigai Sivaramakrishnan, this was exactly the scenario she faced. How she took those challenges on, overcame the obstacles, and drew on her Udacity experience to build a new career for herself, is the story we’re so excited to share with you today.

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Constantly Learning: The Lauren Smith Story

Lauren Smith, Udacity, Student Success

Career change is a daunting undertaking. It often involves a great deal of risk, and always requires courage, self-confidence, and faith. Some of our favorite stories to share are those in which students bravely challenge themselves to embark on new journeys. Lauren Smith is a wonderful example of this, and we’re so excited to share her story with you today. Lauren very kindly took some time to chat with us, and her thoughtful answers offer great inspiration to anyone considering a new career.

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Frogger, and Five More Ways To Learn Front-End Development

Udacity Front-End Web Development

To begin at the beginning, front-end web development is all about creating the actual experience of being on the web. What you see, what you hear, what you learn, what you do—in short, how you engage with a website—that’s what front-end web developers build. To do this, front-end developers deploy a mix of programming and design strategies, and ideally the goal for a front-end developer is to create beautiful websites, that also function well.

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Transformation: The James Peterson Story!

James Peterson Udacity Student Success

When a Udacity student graduates, we celebrate it wholeheartedly. When a Udacity graduate begins the process of pursuing a new role, a new job, a new career, we support them every step of the way. When a Udacity graduate lands a new job, we shout to the stars in praise of their achievement. And, we share their story! Which is exactly what we have the pleasure of doing today. Readers, meet James Peterson!

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5 Fun Nanodegree Program Projects That Prove Programming Is Fun!


Projects are at the heart of our approach to learning. We believe you should learn by doing, and when you’re a Udacity student, projects are what you do. They’re how you learn, and they’re how we assess your learning. Ultimately, they’re also how you’ll demonstrate what you’ve learned. From the moment you enroll, to the moment your portfolio earns you the job offer, it’s all about projects.

Udacity projects can be hard work, and the stakes are often high. Expert project reviewers are standing by at any hour of the day, ready to deliver detailed assessments of your efforts. Between you and your Nanodegree credential, there is a path marked with projects that must be mastered before you can advance. You’ve got your work cut out for you. Sound fun?

It is! And to prove it to you, we’re going to look at five different projects from five different Nanodegree programs that are really, really fun!

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