Welcome, Stacy McGrath, Software Engineer!

We are so pleased to welcome Stacy McGrath, Software Engineer, to the team. You can learn more about Stacy below.

Tell us about yourself. Where are you from?

I have always been a Buckeye! I grew up in Mentor, Ohio, just northeast of Cleveland. And I attended The Ohio State University and continued to make Columbus home after graduating.

Where did you go to school?

I have a bachelor’s degree in German language and literature from The Ohio State University, and I recently attended a coding bootcamp at Tech Elevator.

How did you get into software engineering? What areas of your field do you like to focus on?

I thrive on variety in my work, love a good challenge, and feel most energized when I am actively engaged in learning something new. Combine that with a fascination with technology, a dash of creativity, and a love of puzzles and logic games, and the dynamic, perpetually evolving world of software engineering is the perfect fit!

As a new developer, I’m still gaining broad experience and have not yet chosen a focus area. I like the idea of being a full stack developer who can dive into any piece of a project and help tie it all together.

Do you have a code of ethics or a mantra that you live by when doing development work?

In a word – refactor! I believe that everything – in software and in life – always has room for improvement. While it’s tempting and fun to forge ahead into new territory, it is also important to make time to reflect, review, and revise. I love that software development is generally not about getting something “done.” Instead, it’s about getting something to work, then working on making it better. 

The answer to, “Why do we do it this way?” should never be, “Because that’s how we’ve always done it.” We owe it to ourselves and our clients to ask, instead, “Is what we’re doing working well? Can it be improved? What new information do we have that we didn’t have before?” It is always interesting to look back at code I wrote even just a few months ago and view it through the lens of what I’ve learned since then. I know that making continuous, incremental improvements can have a huge impact over time on making code (and processes) clear, efficient, and scalable, which sets up successful implementation of new features in the future. The moment we allow ourselves or our work to become stale or stagnant, we lose the ability to adapt, change, and grow.

How do our core values (collaboration, initiative, ingenuity) align with your own?

All three of the core values resonate with me, but I most deeply value the power of collaboration. Any time two or more people come together, each person has something to learn and something to teach. And our collective knowledge and experience make us all better at what we do. Working together as a close-knit, cross-functional team lends a higher degree of thoughtfulness and continuity to the big picture of any project.

I have always tried to keep my work relational rather than transactional. That mindset aligns with the way Buckeye Interactive collaborates with clients as well. It is incredibly rewarding to see others reach their potential, as individuals and as organizations. And one of the things that drew me to Buckeye Interactive is the concept of amplifying impact. Our clients have incredible ideas and do amazing work. I’m excited to partner with them to help them make an even greater impact on our community and our world. 

What do you want to learn in the next 12 months as a software engineer? What do you want to learn about the web development industry?

I’m eager to learn more about how we can use intentional design and software development to help our clients tell their stories in a more meaningful way. I also want to learn to produce better user experiences. We’ve all visited websites or used apps that just left us feeling frustrated and unable to find what we needed. I look forward to helping people avoid those experiences by creating purposeful sites and apps that are clear, intuitive, and accessible.

I also hope that within a year or two, I can gain enough experience to be able to serve as a mentor to aspiring junior developers who follow me. 

Assuming time and money were not an object, if you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go? And why?

I love to travel and explore new places and cultures, so choosing just one is a challenge! I find it highly satisfying to check things off lists. So at the moment, I’m focused on collecting stamps in my National Parks Passport. There is so much beauty to explore in the United States, and nothing is more restorative and inspiring to me than time spent in nature. Katmai National Park in Alaska is at the top of my current wishlist. I’d love to explore the wilderness, camp under the stars, and watch the bears at Brooks Falls.

What is the one thing most people don’t know about you?

I rarely watch TV, so the answer to “Have you seen {$random_show}?” is almost always “No,” which sometimes makes me painfully out of touch with modern pop culture references. If our TV is on, it’s likely showing a baseball game (with the radio broadcast for audio) or the live cam of those bears in Alaska. Seriously – nothing will brighten your day faster than a bunch of bears standing on waterfalls with salmon jumping right into their mouths!

 

We are always up for connecting with individuals to talk about working at Buckeye Interactive. If you think you’d be a good fit, please take a look at our careers page and reach out!