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Sarah


Full Stack Software Developer

 

Building Apps for 50,000 Technologist Peers

Developing internal technology resources

I’m a full stack developer with a particular interest in front-end development and ensuring we provide a great user experience. We build apps other technologists at the firm use. For example, we work on a portal app for Ignite, our internal communities of practice. Ignite enables our tech employees in different areas of the firm around the globe to network, share their passions and learn from each other. I also work on an internal technology conference app called POWERUP. POWERUP educates and empowers our tech employees to try out modern technologies. There are over 50,000 technologists across the firm, so we have lots of users!

A collaborative perspective on problem-solving

One of the biggest tech challenges my team has faced was moving our infrastructure to the public cloud. We were one of the first teams in the bank to do so, and we had lots of brand-new problems to solve. We worked in conjunction with various public cloud teams, logging lots of white-boarding and collaboration sessions with the different teams. It was important that we looked at the problems from their different perspectives to make sure we understood the issues and got the solutions right. Having apps on the public cloud gives us flexibility. We can scale our infrastructure up and down, depending on usage, to ensure we are providing a highly available app, while saving money where possible. I learned a huge amount and had the opportunity to study for and obtain certification as part of this project.

Internship sparks interest in software engineering  

I grew up in Scotland and really love it here. During my studies in Computer Science at the University of St. Andrews in St. Andrews, Fife, I did an internship with JPMorgan Chase. I enjoyed the opportunities to use modern engineering practices and tooling and to collaborate with great people on real projects. I grew a lot during the 10-week internship and made some friends for life too. I had such a great experience, that upon graduating from university, I decided to join the firm’s SEP (Software Engineer Program). I’ve been with JPMorgan Chase now a little over two years. I recently completed the Software Engineer Program and have been promoted to Associate.

Opportunities to learn, grow and serve others 

At JPMorgan Chase, there’s lots of opportunity to join online and in-person training courses, plus a focus on social learning through Ignite communities of practice. I’ve participated in Tech for Social Good activities, including conducting outreach and teaching at local schools and universities as well as building an application for a local charity through Force for Good. (Tech for Social Good programs like Force for Good enable employees to develop technology skills, while creating sustainable tech-based solutions for socially focused organizations and communities). I also apply my professional skills as a volunteer in the tech community outside of the firm with Code First Girls. I’ve taught hundreds of women how to code for free through their courses and have mentored and coached women into their first tech roles, including one of my former students who now works at JPMorgan Chase! I was recently awarded a TechWomen100 industry award for the work I do helping women take their first steps into technology careers. 

Career advice: Don’t be afraid to try things that scare you!

Tech changes so quickly that there’s always something new to learn. Taking on tasks I don’t yet know how to do has been a great way to expand my tech knowledge.

On a personal note

My favorite pastimes are running, cooking and teaching people to code.