Leah Jones

AFROTECH STAFF

Leah Jones

AfroTech blogger

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Articles19

The Top 10 Schools Consistently Ranked As The Best HBCUs

Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) are higher learning institutions established in the United States during the 19th and early 20th centuries primarily for the education of Black Americans. Most HBCUs were founded after the Civil War, during the Reconstruction era, with the purpose of providing higher education opportunities for Black Americans who were previously denied access to mainstream institutions due to segregation and racial discrimination. Today, these same schools still provide opportunities for Black Americans to embrace their culture while getting their education. With many schools existing around the country, certain ones have been regarded as the best HBCUs. The top HBCUs are often ranked based on various criteria such as academic excellence, student outcomes , notable alumni , campus facilities and more. Here is a list of the top 10 best HBCUs, along with what makes them stand out. Spelman College Spelman consistently ranks at number one as the best...

Jun 4, 2024

15 Black Scientists That Changed Our Understanding Of The World

The work and pioneering done by Black Americans has historically gone unrecognized across many areas/fields, including science. Black Americans make up 12% of the US population and have experienced the most disadvantages and setbacks in education than any other group in the country. For this reason, it is believed that there are not many Black scientists or Black people in STEM of note; however, this is not true historically nor in the present day. The work of Black scientists has led to discoveries that have changed our understanding in areas including health, space travel, public safety and more. Many of these Black scientists faced the added challenge of navigating racism, discrimination and segregation, on top of the challenging work they accomplished . These individuals defied all doubt, prejudice and other obstacles in their way to make ground breaking discoveries that help us learn more about the world and prove how vital Black scientists’ contributions in STEM are. Here are...

May 16, 2024

Understanding An Existential Crisis And How To Cope Professionally

An existential crisis is a profound and often unsettling moment in an individual’s life when they confront fundamental questions about the meaning, purpose , and significance of their existence . It is a period of intense self-reflection and contemplation that may arise when individuals grapple with the realization of their mortality, the nature of human existence, the search for personal identity , realizations about free will and choice, and the meaning of life. It can feel heavy and overwhelming, as it consists of questioning the meaning of living at its most basic explanation. An existential crisis can not only impact your personal life, but your professional one as well. Key Aspects Of An Existential Crisis Questioning one’s purpose, direction, or reasons for living Feeling disconnected from people, activities, or values that previously gave life meaning Having a sense that life lacks inherent meaning and questioning the meaning of existence Experiencing intense boredom,...

Mar 15, 2024

Writers Block? Here's What To Write In A Retirement Card For Your Mentor

Going straight out of school and into the professional world is a huge transition that leaves many feeling blindsided. Receiving guidance on how to navigate the change from someone with industry experience is invaluable, which is what makes mentors so impactful . That and the selflessness they exhibit by going out of their way to help you in whatever stage of your career you may be in so you can grow. Forming this kind of relationship can make it challenging to decide what to write in a retirement card for a mentor. An optimal message for a retirement card would be one that is fairly brief but sincere enough to convey the gratitude that person deserves. There is no shame in seeking inspiration for what to write in a retirement card for a mentor. Sometimes it is hard to convey feelings of gratitude and appreciation in the most appropriate words for the situation. These messages are a great start and can easily be edited to align with the card giver’s personal relationship with their...

Mar 15, 2024

Is Shadow Work The Secret To Personal And Professional Success

Everyone has a part of themselves that they do not bring into the light but carry with them everywhere they go. This is known as the “shadow self.” It is also often referred to as a dark side: not because it is evil, but rather, repressed. However, acceptance of this part of the self is crucial in order to fully appreciate one’s self. The process of achieving this acceptance is called shadow work. What Is Shadow Work? The term “shadow work” is widely attributed to Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung. In his analytical psychology, Jung developed the concept of the “shadow” – the unknown or unconscious aspects of oneself, both good and bad. According to Jung, we deny or suppress parts of ourselves that we don’t like, deem incompatible, or bring up too much anxiety to face. The shadow thus represents our dark side – the negative traits we try to hide or overcome. Jung suggested that failing to recognize the shadow leads to projecting one’s darker qualities onto others. Integrating the shadow...

Mar 8, 2024

17 Unique Interview Questions To Ask An Employer

Interviewers evaluate candidates for a job based on much more than just an answer to a question. Aside from experience and qualifications, they usually seek someone with good communication skills, professionalism, respect, interest in the position, and more. This means that showing interest in the conversation with the interviewer or being engaged in the information they give is important. A good way to display this is by asking unique interview questions. Before delving into the questions , remember that it’s probably for the best if you don’t overthink the interview process. Although staying calm may be hard , it is still necessary. These unique interview questions will help you make a better impression , but even beyond impressing an employer, questions like these help a candidate gain valuable insight into the company culture, expectations, opportunities and more. Unique Interview Questions To Ask an Employer 1. “What’s a recent project that has excited or challenged your team?”...

Feb 12, 2024

Understanding And Overcoming Imposter Syndrome

Impostor syndrome (also known as impostor phenomenon, impostorism, fraud syndrome or the impostor experience) is a psychological pattern in which an individual doubts their skills, talents or accomplishments and has a persistent internalized fear of being exposed as a “fraud.” Despite external evidence of their competence, those experiencing this phenomenon remain convinced that they are frauds and do not deserve all they have achieved. Individuals with impostor syndrome incorrectly attribute their success to luck, or interpret it as a result of deceiving others into thinking they are more intelligent than they perceive themselves to be. Who Came Up With The Phrase Imposter Syndrome? Imposter syndrome was first identified and coined as a term in 1978 by psychologists Pauline Clance and Suzanne Imes. In their seminal paper “The Imposter Phenomenon in High Achieving Women,” Clance and Imes described imposter syndrome as an internal experience of intellectual phoniness common among...

Feb 2, 2024

How To Deal With Job Abandonment And Prevent It From Happening In The Future

Job abandonment refers to a situation where an employee, without any notice or communication, fails to report to work for an extended period. It is considered a voluntary resignation, as the employee is essentially abandoning their job responsibilities without formally resigning. There is no law establishing what amount of time is considered job abandonment; every employer must establish it based on their own terms. In most cases, organizations have policies and procedures in place to address instances of job abandonment. These policies may include specific steps that the employer takes to attempt communication with the absent employee, such as sending emails, making phone calls, sending letters and more. If the employee fails to respond or provide a valid explanation for their absence within a specified timeframe, the employer may consider the employee to have voluntarily resigned. Job abandonment can have consequences for the employee, such as losing employment benefits or facing...

Jan 26, 2024

These 10 Books Will Transform Your Business

Starting a business and becoming an entrepreneur is an option for anyone regardless of their education level, socioeconomic status and more. It may be hard for some to believe, but there is legitimacy to becoming successful with just a dollar and a dream . There are many testimonials out there of people who have gone from rags to riches, sharing stories on how they turned their ideas into a real business with hard work and determination. The best business books are the ones that not only share a success story, but also teach the reader how they can write a success story of their own. Many of the books below are also written by Black authors who specifically highlight the past and present struggles of Black Americans leading successful businesses. Discover which of these books is the most inspiring or resonates the most or combine the knowledge from them all to put to good use in the industry. Here are 10 of the best business books that tell these stories and help inspire anyone to...

Jan 26, 2024

16 Unique And In Demand Tech Startup Ideas

Getting into the tech business is becoming more appealing with every success story we come across. Technology is the future and it will only continue to be that way as it evolves. Common folk with an idea and a dream are taking their unique tech startup ideas and turning them into a profitable business . It can truly happen for anyone willing to put in the work and pursue it with the right amount of determination. However, it is first essential to have a promising idea. Tech startups can operate across various industries, from healthcare and finance to education and entertainment, aiming to disrupt traditional models, improve efficiency, or create entirely new experiences for consumers or businesses. These startups often seek to address a specific problem or need in the market using technology as a fundamental component of their solution. Good tech startup ideas do not need to be something a person is highly knowledgeable about or skilled in; the idea just needs to be original and...

Jan 26, 2024

Where To Find Startup Grants For Your Business In 2024

Those seeking funding for their small business have the debt-free option of applying for startup business grants or small business grants. These grants are typically awarded by government entities, private organizations or corporations and, unlike loans , are not expected to be paid back. There are incentives for these companies and organizations to award these grants, as the new businesses could create economic growth or support a certain cause/research topic (like social or environmental) that one of these entities is interested in. These grants are highly competitive and have very specific requirements that must be met before they are awarded. Most likely, applicants will need to prepare by verifying the eligibility criteria, funding amount, application deadlines and any restrictions of a grant that their business aligns with. Also, ensuring the applicant’s business is specific enough to the grant’s requirements is very important . Doing so ensures the applicant has a better...

Jan 19, 2024

When And How To Follow Up After An Interview

Job interviewing is a process that consists of much more than submitting an application, doing an interview and getting hired or not. Another aspect of the process that should be gone about strategically is the follow-up process. It is natural to want to contact an interviewer or recruiter after an interview to know whether the position has been secured or if it is time to look elsewhere. However, it is important to avoid being too pushy, too casual or too informal when conducting a follow-up. Here is some general guidance on how to follow up after an interview. Send A Thank-You Email Before a follow-up email is of any concern, consider sending a thank you email after the initial interview. A thoughtful gesture is to send a personalized thank-you email to each person you interviewed within 24 hours of the interview. Express gratitude for their time, reiterate your interest in the position and highlight a specific aspect of the interview or conversation that resonated with you. This...

Jan 12, 2024

How Far Back Should A Resume Go? Here's What To Include

Resumes usually have no specific guidelines despite being the most crucial aspect of initially applying for a job . However, there is still an unspecified standard that resumes are expected to uphold by employers and recruiters. This makes job searching very often challenging and ambiguous. Luckily, there are some recommended guidelines to follow when it comes to curating a resume that have been recommended by job recruiters and other experts in the subject. Here are some guidelines for those wondering “how far back should a resume go?” A general rule of thumb is to include around 10-15 years of work experience on a resume. According to Lisa Tynan for Top Resume , reducing the job history section of a resume to this amount of time helps to keep the resume concise, only focuses on the most important and/or relevant information and combats against age discrimination caused by the amount of time a person has spent working. However, thinking in terms of the specific industry/position...

Jan 11, 2024

No Idea? Here Are 10 Tech Business Ideas To Launch This Year

Some people know the moment they enter the workforce that, they are meant to be their own boss. Others may have known from the beginning but are waiting for the right idea to ignite a fire within them. However, waiting too long can just as easily stifle that fire. Aspiring entrepreneurs often find themselves throwing up their hands in defeat saying, “I want to start a business but have no ideas.” Most successful entrepreneurs share that it is not always about having an original idea that gets one started in business, nor does that original idea automatically equate to success. For many, it was taking an existing idea and iterating upon it; making it more efficient and polishing it. In other words, it was about starting rather than waiting for just the right moment with just the right idea. With this in mind, here are ten tech business ideas for those who want to start a business but have no ideas. Each one of them capitalizes upon existing tech that is popular and becoming more and...

Jan 11, 2024

10 Must-Attend Startup Events For Founders In 2024

Now is the perfect time to begin planning to attend some of the many startup events already gearing up for 2024. These events can be a transformative opportunity for a growing business or an entrepreneur with an idea that has the potential to become something big. Startup events often bring together entrepreneurs, investors, industry experts, and innovators to discuss emerging trends, share knowledge, network, and showcase new ideas or products. These events typically feature keynote speeches, panel discussions, pitch competitions, workshops, and networking sessions. Registering early for 2024 events could be a smart financial investment , as many offer reduced prices for early commitments. This is especially true as many of these startup events are occurring in different cities worldwide. Below are some of the best startup events for those who want to take their business to the next level and make connections that will open doors to new opportunities and potential success. 1....

Jan 5, 2024