Mentor Monday: Meet Nhat


Nhat Dao mentors students at the Wesley-Rankin Community Center. He enjoys seeing the 3rd-5th graders' excitement each week and enjoys the challenge of explaining computer science concepts in a fun way.

Meet Nhat...

What is something many people don't know about you?
I have resided in 3 states including Arizona, Idaho and Texas over the past 6 years.

How did you become interested in technology and programming?
I majored in Physics when I was a college freshman. After taking an intro class for programming using Python, I was hooked. I changed my major to Computer Science after realizing that programming can help me make an impact on everything almost immediately.

What did you study in college?
I studied Computer Science and Mathematics in college.

What are you working on now?
I’m working at Flywheel Building Intelligence Inc where I help building a cloud-based platform that offers real-time people, energy, and building management service.

What have you gained from being a mentor? What was your most memorable moment while mentoring?
Learning how to explain to kids about programming concepts has been the most rewarding part of mentoring. Kids are the most challenging audiences for any kind of talks but I was glad that they got excited to program after the first few sections. My most memorable moment had to be this one time when some of the kids figured out how to add sounds on scratch. They managed to have a person sprite rap!

Is there anything that you wish you could tell your younger self about coding?
I wish I could tell my younger self to go to as many hackathons as possible. Once you got into the industry, there are less time and opportunities.

What is it about Bold Idea's mission that really connects with you?
Teaching kids at young age how to program does not neccessarily mean that we convince them to pursue a career in Computer Science but much more than that. As Steve Jobs once said “Everybody in this country should learn to program a computer, because it teaches you how to think”, we want to help kids develop from coding to computational thinking.