10 Years, 2000 Journeys: Celebrating 10 Years of Tech in Nashville

Episode 2: Ability Is Nothing Without Opportunity

Ability Is Nothing Without Opportunity

From day one, NSS saw the need for more local tech talent as a way to create paths for individuals to access high-paying careers who are financially disadvantaged or are from under-represented groups in tech. In this episode, host Clark Buckner sits down with two NSS alumni who have made the most of the opportunities available through NSS. Listen now on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, or SoundCloud.

  • The History of NSS with John Wark

    Episode 1: The History of NSS with John Wark

    In the first episode, host Clark Buckner catches up with Nashville Software School Founder and CEO John Wark to discuss everything from NSS’s conception, to the opportunities available to Middle Tennesseans for careers in tech. They also take a moment to look at what might be in store for the future of NSS. Listen now on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, or SoundCloud.

    View Episode 1

  • Trailer

    Episode 0: Trailer

    2022 is Nashville Software School’s 10 year anniversary and we’re celebrating all year long! Each month we are releasing a new episode of a special podcast series, 10 Years | 2,000 Journeys: Celebrating 10 years of Tech in Nashville! Join us as we look at the growth of the tech community in Nashville over the last 10 years, and look ahead towards the next 10 years! Our kickoff episode premiers later this week, featuring a conversation with NSS Founder John Wark! Check out this trailer to discover what’s ahead! Listen now on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or SoundCloud.

    View Episode 0



10 Years, 2000 Journeys: Celebrating 10 Years of Tech in Nashville
Welcome to Stories from The Hackery, a podcast series centered around stories from Nashville Software School graduates, employers, or instructors.

Stories From The Hackery provides an opportunity for our graduates to tell the story of their journeys from their prior careers to their start in tech. It’s also a channel that allows our hiring partners to communicate why they hire junior developers, lessons they’ve learned on how to onboard junior developers, and suggestions for the best ways to help junior developers grow. Finally, the podcast gives us a way to share lessons we’ve learned about how to develop promising new talent, share opinions about tech education and the local talent market, and otherwise help the community learn about what goes on here at Nashville Software School.

You can find all of our podcasts on Soundcloud.

The most recent episodes of our podcast series, Stories From The Hackery, are now available on the same platforms as your favorite podcasts! Find out what it takes to start a career in Software Development, Data Analytics, Data Science, or UI & UX Design from those who made the leap.

Original episodes from Stories From The Hackery

  • Brandon Lyons

    Episode 1: Brandon Lyons

    Software Developer at Metova Previous job:
    Youth Services
    "NSS not only changed my life, it saved my life"

    In this podcast: Brandon Lyons entered the Nashville Software School without a full college education and little experience in software development. Today, he is happily employed at Metova living out the career he always imagined. Clark Buckner spoke with Brandon about the application process, different experiences in NSS and life on the other side. View Details

    View Episode 1

  • Kelley Stephens

    Episode 2: Kelley Stephens

    Software Engineer at Ingram Content Group Previous job:
    Marketing & Operations
    'I would encourage everyone to make the jump and not let fear hold them back'

    Kelley Stephens found herself growing increasingly bored at her job in marketing and operations. After graduating from the Nashville Software School, she joined Ingram Content Group and now becomes so immersed in her work that the hours fly by. Kelley discusses her background, her time at the software school, and how it has changed her career and her life. Read highlights

    View Episode 2

  • Jacob Sims

    Episode 3: Jacob Sims

    Vice President of Development and Information Technology at Premise Health Previous job:
    Marketing & Operations
    "Nashville is going through a renaissance, and that renaissance is being driven by technology,” Jacob Sims, Vice President of Development and Information Technology at Premise Health.

    He joins John Wark and Clark Buckner in discussing the importance of mentorship, hiring and understanding the learning process for Junior Developers, and retaining talent to make the culture and entire company experience work better for both junior and senior level developers. Read highlights

    View Episode 3

  •  iOS Class Preview with Van Simmons

    Episode 4: iOS Class Preview with Van Simmons

    iOS Instructor at Nashville Software School
    "Don't fight the platform...the importance of being fluent & idiomatic with the platform"

    iOS and, particularly, Swift continue to rapidly evolve. Van Simmons previews our upcoming iOS mobile development class and discusses how the changing nature of Swift is causing us to evolve our iOS class. Van also talks about the rapid emergence of idiomatic conventions for developing apps in Swift, his experience building multiple major iOS apps in Swift, and the potential for Swift as a language for server-side development. View Details

    View Episode 4

  • Melanie Hall

    Episode 5: Melanie Hall

    Software Engineer at Southern Made Co. Previous job:
    Graphic Designer
    'I still have this desire to create and build meaningful tools'

    Melanie Hall first moved to Nashville to volunteer for a non-profit that worked in India. She was also pursuing her college training and passion for design by working for a interactive agency. As many of her design projects became more web-based, Melanie realized the need to learn coding and made the jump to the Nashville Software School. Today, she is a software engineer at Southern Made where she continues to create and build meaningful tools that help others. Read highlights

    View Episode 5

  • Jim Siegienski

    Episode 6: Jim Siegienski

    CTO at Groups360
    Jim Siegienski,

    CTO at Groups360, speaks in depth with John Wark on availability of junior and more senior software developers in Nashville, sparking a conversation on where Nashville is now, how we can improve it, and the way to create a new mindset for companies willing to hire developers based on their problem-solving skills rather than knowing any specific programming language. Read highlights

    View Episode 6

  • Daniel Green

    Episode 7: Daniel Green

    Director of Product Analytics at VitalSource Technologies at Ingram Content Group


    Daniel’s development team was the first team at Ingram Content Group to hire a graduate from a coding bootcamp. We chat with Daniel about the products that VitalSource develops and why he felt it made sense to interview NSS graduates for his team. And we talk more broadly about the impact of the Nashville tech community on helping NSS become successful and how, in turn, NSS grads are impacting the community. Read highlights

    View Episode 7

  • Steve Brownlee

    Episode 8: Steve Brownlee

    Lead Instructor at Nashville Software School
    Steve Brownlee,

    Lead Instructor here at NSS, speaks with John Wark about the philosophy behind the Mastery Learning Process and fostering a learning environment that produces productive, inquisitive developers. Steve takes a deep-dive into how both students and local employers contribute to the continuous evolution of the core curriculum. Read highlights

    View Episode 8