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Amazing web apps built by female engineers

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In Hackbright Academy’s rigorous 24-week Part-Time Software Engineering Program, students not only manage their full-time jobs with part-time studies and learn the skills to become engineers, but they build impressive web apps while maintaining that elusive work-life-study balance. Learn more about these amazing women in their own words and get a glimpse into the wide variety of apps they built in our inaugural Part-Time cohort, each showcasing our new alumnae’s unique interests and personalities.


Grace Cohort: July 2018


alyssa lewAlyssa Lew

LinkedIn | GitHub

Alyssa has always been fascinated by how things are made and how they work. She graduated from Scripps College with a B.A. in Cognitive Neuroscience. While attending Hackbright, she managed data classification systems and worked on marketing for a mobile app intelligence company. She also studied the interactions between sleep and mental health, and language and cognitive development in two research labs. Alyssa loves problem-solving, innovating, and collaborating with others to create something new. She finds joy in the small successes, such as when a piece of code runs as designed without errors! She is excited to apply her improved software engineering skills in combination with her interests in neuroscience and psychology.

Hackbright Project: Foraging Foodie

Have you ever had a craving for something, but don’t know where to go? Foraging Foodie helps users find the perfect restaurants to satisfy their cravings. The app uses advanced search criteria such as taste, food temperature, and dietary restrictions, and integrates the Yelp Fusion API to generate suggestions. Once logged in, users can also track their restaurant visit history, personal restaurant ratings, add addresses and specify food preferences on their profile.

Foraging Foodie is powered by Python and Flask. The elegant and responsive web pages are built with JavaScript and Bootstrap. User profile information is stored in a PostgreSQL database.

Technology Stack:

Python, Flask, SQLAlchemy, PostgreSQL, JavaScript, JQuery, AJAX, HTML, CSS, Jinja, Bootstrap

APIs Used:

Yelp Fusion API

C.S. or Related Experience Prior to Hackbright:

Alyssa dabbled in many programming languages and technical applications before coming to Hackbright. At Scripps College, she took Intro to Computer Science taught in Java and a neuroimaging course where she learned Matlab to process fMRI scans. She completed Codecademy tracks in Python and Command Line. Alyssa has also built projects incorporating technologies including Flask, Slack API, Git, Arduino, and Processing.


Annette Ambriz

LinkedIn | GitHub

Annette has a passion for learning and exploring. While completing a Chemistry major at San Francisco State University she had her first exposure to computer programming and instantly fell in love with it. Her love of science, analytic structure, and logic have become key assets in her role at Credit Karma. Recently, Annette has started to execute on front-end software engineering tickets for Credit Karma as she gains knowledge in full stack technologies such as GraphQL, Google Cloud, and microservice architectures.

Hackbright Project: My Personal Website

Using React.js and the latest frontend frameworks Annette created a dynamic Single Page Web Application. The end result is a full-stack personal website that uses isolated React components to highlight Annette’s skills and interests. Her personal website project has laid the foundation for her understanding of the modern web and how companies are creating efficiency in deploying sites and mobile applications. Post Hackbright, she plans to deploy her site using Firebase and opensource her project for others to reuse for their own personal websites.

Technology Stack:

React.js, React script, React Router DOM, Webpack, Babel, NPM, Node.js, Express, ES6, HTML 5, JavaScript, Flash, Python, PostgreSQL, SQLAlchemy, Fetch API, AJAX, Bootstrap, HTML, CSS

C.S. or Related Experience Prior to Hackbright:

Annette has taken CS courses while SFSU including: Introduction to Programming, Data Structures, and Discrete Mathematics. In her spare time, she has used Amazon web services and plans to learn Scala and other functional programming languages.


Gail Hernandez

LinkedIn | GitHub

Gail Hernandez graduated from UC Berkeley with a BS in chemical biology and went on to start a PhD in chemistry at the University of Chicago. Since then, she’s applied her scientific mindset to operational roles, working alongside software engineers and execs in tech for the last eight years. She started at Google as an administrative business partner, ran operations at two early-stage startups (Medisas and Sourceress), and currently leads the PeopleOps team at OpenAI. She’s obsessed with efficiency and is always on the lookout for useful, beautiful productivity apps; she discovered her love for coding after writing her first scripts to automate her work, and realizing she could build her dream productivity tools.

Hackbright Project: AuditTime

A time-management app that allows you to track time (integrated with Toggl and Google Calendar), set goals, and view reports on how you spend your time.

Technology Stack:

Python, Flask, Postgres, SQLAlchemy, Bootstrap, JavaScript, jQuery, Toastr, Flatpickr, Selectize.js

APIs Used:

Toggl, Google Calendar

C.S. or Related Experience Prior to Hackbright:

Gail has self-studied HTML, CSS, Google Apps Script, Dremel/SQL, and JavaScript. She completed a 10-week ‘Programming in Python for non-engineers’ course at Google and earned a certificate for finishing in the top 10% of class.


Jade Paoletta

LinkedIn | GitHub

Jade graduated from the University of San Francisco with a BA in English. During her undergrad, she dabbled in computer science courses while exploring technical writing as a career. She interned as a Content Editor at WalkMe, where she picked up other technical skills such as QA. This eventually led to a full time position with WalkMe as a Product Support Specialist. She discovered her love for problem solving through supporting customers, and expanded these skills when she joined PagerDuty’s support team. Working directly with end-users allows her to empathize with the user experience, and empowers her to develop creative solutions. She hopes to expand her problem solving skills by pursuing a career in software development.

Hackbright Project: NearSited

NearSited is a web application that allows users to search for popular scenic locations and browse artistic photos of each given location, loaded from the Flickr API. At a glance, users can easily access a full week weather forecast as well as a map rendering in order to take into account the logistics of visiting a given site. Users also have the ability to favorite, comment and upload their own photos for a location. With the trip planning feature, users can invite their friends to join them on a trip, sending a custom invite message via email. Users can also create their own account to have all of this information available to them within a custom dashboard.

Technology Stack:

Python, Flask, JavaScript (AJAX, jQuery), HTML, CSS, Bootstrap, PostgreSQL, SQLAlchemy, bcrypt

APIs Used:

Flickr API, Google Places API, Google Maps API, Mailgun API, DarkSky API

C.S. or Related Experience Prior to Hackbright:

Currently, Jade works to support a variety of technical users on a daily basis, including software engineers, product managers, and sysadmins. She has experience from her previous role supporting front end technologies, including troubleshooting HTML and CSS and jQuery. In her current role as a Technical Support Specialist, she helps users with account configuration, using the REST API, writing SQL queries, debugging scripts, and supporting PagerDuty’s 200+ integrations.


Kathryn Chew

LinkedIn | GitHub

Kathryn has long been a believer in the power of technology to enhance and extend the workings of any field. She began her tech life pursuing dual undergraduate majors in Anthropology and Media Studies, culminating in the construction of software to demonstrate the benefits of interactive technology in archaeological pedagogy. Kathryn continued this line of study in a graduate program at the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology at UCLA, exploring the integration of digital toolkits such as photogrammetric 3D models, game engines, and data visualization into archaeological research. Currently, Kathryn is working to automate internal Legal Compliance processes in FinTech, but is seeking a more explicitly technological focus for her work.

Hackbright Project: ActivEats

ActivEats is a web app for the athlete on the go. With it, users can access a library of thousands of recipes, create an account to set dietary preferences, and generate an automated weekly meal plan based on those preferences. ActivEats allows users to generate and email themselves shopping lists with ingredients of individual recipes, or aggregated shopping lists for their whole meal plan. Users can also use the app to track their weekly active calorie burn using the Strava API. In v2, integration of nutritional data from the USDA Food Composition Database will allow users to set weekly caloric limits, or allow meal plans to dynamically adjust with users’ calorie needs from week to week as they add training or enjoy a well-deserved break.

Technology Stack:

Python, JavaScript (AJAX, JSON), SQL, HTML, CSS, Scrapy, Flask, jQuery, SQLAlchemy, Flask Mail, Bootstrap, Jinja, Chart.js, PostgreSQL

APIs Used:

Strava, USDA Food Composition Database (NDB)

C.S. or Related Experience Prior to Hackbright:

At UCLA, Kathryn served as product manager for AEGARON, and contributed to UCLA’s RomeLab and Encyclopedia of Egyptology. She was a fellow at the NEH Summer Institute for Advanced Topics in the Digital Humanities, and learned the Facebook API for a project presented at the 18th International Conference on Cultural Heritage & New Technologies, Vienna. Independently, Kathryn has studied JavaScript, Google Apps Script, Google Query Language, HTML, CSS, R, and Macromedia ActionScript.


Marijane Castillo

LinkedIn | GitHub

Marijane Castillo is a Recruiting Coordinator for ABM Industries, a Fortune 500 corporation. She has 10+ years of professional experience and has recruited and trained more than 400 professionals. As former high school drop-out born and raised in Oakland, CA, a diverse community with struggling schools and high rates of violent crime, she believes strongly in the power of education and social justice. Her interest in tech was sparked when she was an early employee of a charter school that aims to teach low-income children in deep East Oakland how to code. She graduated from with an M.A. in Sociology of Education from New York University in 2012 and earned a B.A. in Chinese with a minor in Spanish from UC Berkeley in 2010.

Hackbright Project: GivR

The booming tech economy affects millions of people daily. In San Francisco, nearly all clothing stores, restaurants, grocery markets, and even parking meters accept electronic payments and fewer and fewer people carry cash. Unfortunately, the visibly homeless cannot tap into this electronic payment system when asking for donations. GivR is an app that bridges the gap between 21st-century technology and feeding the visibly homeless. This app allows any GivR with a smartphone and a debit card or credit card to Giv hot food to a homeless individual. It is cashless, delivers within an hour, and tracks eligible taxable donations.

Technology Stack:

SQLAlchemy, PostgreSQL, HTML, CSS, Python, Jinja, jQuery, Ajax, Chart.js, JavaScript, Bootstrap, D3

APIs Used:

Google Maps, Postmates

C.S. or Related Experience Prior to Hackbright:

As a Research Analyst at Parent-Child Home Program, she managed user access on MIS via SQL to identify glitches based on user and funder feedback. She communicated these glitches to developers while monitoring social program implementation. She also tracked developer progress while moderating user acceptance of new MIS features. In addition, she negotiated specs and managed contracts with Metis Associates to improve user interface design to meet funder, state, and federal standards.


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