Comic Con Africa today announced that registration for the Online Con is open. This follows just a month before the show’s online version is upon us. Comic Con Purdue President Mitch Daniels on campus reopening: ‘If you’re worried about the next 13 weeks, join the club. It’s a big one.’ because I have asthma and compromised immune system they won’t allow me to work. I’m 21 and I have a communications degree and was trying to get a job at a news station or something and also work at target part time. I”m trying to move out, I can’t afford NOT to work even if I have a compromised immune system. How am I going to pay for my food, clothes, my phone bill. And of course I need money to move out I live with my parents but am still expected to pay for all of that. I’m running out of unemployment money and need to get another job ASAP. My mom got angry at me when I told her I had applied for some news stations. Target is always HIRING especially during this time they need a lot of workers so if I work the news station full time and target part time I could afford a nice apartment. My mom said to find an online job but a lot of online jobs or scams. and the ones that are legit don’t pay consistently. I need a stable job that’s going to consistently pay me every week not one of those online jobs that pay you once every blue moon. When schools closed this spring and students were sent home to study online, Kai Mercado vanished. – 200 acres prime, waterfront lands gifted to foreign company Days before the March 2nd elections, there were a flurry of announcements by the state-owned National Industrial Commercial and I… They worked harder than others and were still underestimated. Trailblazing women of color see themselves in Kamala Harris.
Comic Con Africa today announced that registration for the Online Con is open. This follows just a month before the show’s online version is upon us.
Comic Con Africa’s ground-breaking Online Con will be hosted on a specially developed online hub – the epicentre of the universe of all things Pop Culture. Are you as excited as we are?
The good news is that we can now enjoy the event from the comfort of our home. Comic Con Africa’s Online Con will take place on the weekend of 24 to 27 September 2020, from 10:00 to 18:00 every day.
In addition, the Official Comic Con Africa 2020 digital visitor badge will be sent to registered visitors before the show, and the exclusive 2020 digital show guide will be sent the day before the show.
Registration is free and will get fans exclusive content, including a virtual front-row seat “in the home of Pop Culture”, as well a virtual goodie bag and automatic entry into exclusive competitions.
That’s the easiest part of all. Simply head over to this link. In order to qualify for the virtual goodie bag (and of course, to stand a chance to win amazing prizes), you’ll need to register before 18 September 2020.
The platform will be a central hub at the Con where fans can access virtual zones, packed with engaging content and exhibition halls, exhibitor stands and shopping. Content across this special platform will include much of what fans are used to seeing at a physical Con.
This includes Celeb Q&A’s, virtual cosplay, gaming tournaments, Artist Alley, tabletop gaming, wargaming and panel discussions with leading experts and fascinating speakers.
“From live streams to live chats to interactive quizzes and shopping opportunities, this hub will offer everything you’d hope for and more – including a handy help desk with online assistance from the Comic Con Africa team.”
You can also stay up to date with all the latest happening by following the live streams on Comic Con Africa’s official streaming channels such as YouTube, Facebook and Twitch.
Carla Massmann, Comic Con Africa’s Portfolio Director explains that “the most important reason” for going online to bring the community together while still keeping Pop Culture fans entertained.
“Despite the ban on large gatherings, we still want to give our fans the opportunity to come together for the weekend, and to connect with each other and their communities in real-time. Fans always come first”.
This year’s event will be out of this world. The following talent have been confirmed for Comic Con Africa’s Online Con:
Confirmed comic creators, writers and illustrators include:
In the gaming sphere, TV presenter, YouTuber, esports host and live event producer Adam Savage will be in attendance to wow gaming fans.
Mitch Daniels on Purdue’s reopening: ‘If you’re worried about the next 13 weeks, join the club.’ Students, profs: How long will it last?
WEST LAFAYETTE – One evening last week, as campus reopening plans were starting to unravel at a handful of major universities across the country, Aaron Hall took in an off-campus reawakening near Purdue at the corner of Northwestern Avenue and State Street.
He’s done at Purdue, back in West Lafayette last week for the first time since March to pick up a few things he’d left behind during his senior year when the university went virtual in the face of an emerging coronavirus pandemic.
Around him, crowds of students who’s already moved back were out scouting dinner and the rest. Clumps of masked-up freshmen followed Boiler Gold Rush orientation leaders, checking out what they hoped would be their surroundings for the next four years. A small line up the street waited for a table at the iconic Harry’s Chocolate Shop, just as lines would form later than night outside Brothers, another State Street bar, before health department-set closing times of midnight. The plaza tables across Northwestern, outside Greyhouse Coffee, were filled.
Waiting for a friend in line to get into an at-capacity Target store that opened two weeks ago in the West Lafayette Village – “Would have been nice to have that when I was here,” he said – Hall said friends hanging out before classes start Aug. 24 were definitely clued in on what was going on at Notre Dame, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and Michigan State. All three announced plans to go online in some form last week, as hopes of making a fall semester work out in person resulted spikes of coronavirus cases.
“Everything I’m hearing,” Hall said, “is whatever happens, happens. My friends, they’re ready for school get going. … That’s what I would be saying, too. I hope for everybody’s sake this works out. But, man, who knows?”
Who knows has been a looming theme in West Lafayette, as – ready or not – Purdue approached reopening with a combination of record freshman and undergraduate classes and fresh examples that other campuses were already giving up.
That went straight to the top.
More:Mitch Daniels says ‘skeptics are everywhere,’ but tells students he has faith in them as campus reopens
President Mitch Daniels made the case as far back as April that reopening Purdue amounted to a civic duty. He’s been encouraged and pressed by Purdue trustees to – as Chairman Michael Berghoff put it in early May – be “foot on the gas” about a return to a residential campus. Daniels wasn’t backing away last week, no matter what other schools were doing, from a charge that made him a national face of higher ed’s hopes to return to the classroom.
“I’m not saying that at all,” Daniels told the J&C, standing by a Protect Purdue plan intended to limit exposure to coronavirus on campus.
“Some people have said, ‘You’re confident,’” Daniels said. “We never once used that word, because we know how difficult a situation this is. All we’ve said it that we’ve take all the measures we know how. … All we’ve said is that as hard as it will be, it’s only right to try.”
Over the summer, Purdue piled up five miles of Plexiglas for classrooms and dining spaces, purchased 1 million face masks, outlined 783 social distancing plans for instructional spaces, delivered 50,000 wellness kits to faculty, students and staff, tested roughly 40,000 students before they arrived, hired dozens of contact tracers, converted dining halls into grab-and-go operations and found ways for 65 percent of university staff to work remotely.
Still, Daniels confided with faculty last week about the prospects of pulling off a semester that on paper is scheduled to last in person until Thanksgiving.
“If you’re worried about the next 13 weeks, join the club,” Daniels said. “It’s a big one.”
On campus, the parlor game of the week – other than the variations of beer pong the persisted outside student rentals in New Chauncey Neighborhood – dealt with over/under odds about how long Purdue would make. That, and how many confirmed cases reported on Purdue’s new online COVID-19 dashboard, unveiled Friday, it would take before the university retreated as Notre Dame and others had.
“I think they’ve been doing pretty good,” Maxine Hogo, a Purdue senior, said Friday about all the masks she was seeing on campus and about the university’s overall Protect Purdue plan.
More:Purdue’s not alone: Across Indiana, students are being suspended for partying as campuses try to reopen
More:Mitch Daniels addresses off-campus Purdue parties, signs code demanding social distance
“It’s still really nerve-racking, because you just don’t know and everyone’s learning as we go,” Hogo said. “That would be bad, starting senior year not in school. But I feel everyone’s been doing good because we all want to stay on campus.”
Assata Gilmore, Purdue’s student body president, and Hannah Walters, the student body vice president, said they’d been fielding concerns about how difficult it was to keep social distance – “Even walking down sidewalks,” Gilmore said – as students started moving back into dorms. Madelina Nunez, Purdue Graduate Student Government president, was pushing for a free bike share program to deal with growing worries about crowded rides around campus from CityBus, which typically logs in the range of 20,000 rides a day during a semester.
More:Purdue suspends 36 students first night after Mitch Daniels’ new rule on off-campus parties
“We do believe that there are some key measures that Purdue put into place that weren’t implemented by (other schools) that could lead to a different outcome,” Gilmore said. “That being said, it is beyond reasonable to think that Purdue may have to pivot to completely online learning at some point during the semester, and we are doing what we can to ensure that students are prepared and are treated fairly if that is to happen. …
“We are still confident that if any institution can pull this off,” Gilmore said, “it will be Purdue.”
Earlier this month, members of a group called Graduate Rights and Our Well-being gave Daniels a petition signed by nearly 900 grad students, calling for more say in working conditions in labs and other aspects of a reopened campus. This week, the group called for Purdue to be clear about what would happen if campus must close, so students, faculty and staff can make plans in advance for a safe exit.
More:Parties, missteps and slow testing: How Notre Dame’s COVID-19 plan unraveled
More:Purdue ready to suspend students, police prove game in keeping eye on off-campus parties, social distance violations
“Our confidence is as low or lower than it has been in the past,” Elle Rochford, a Ph.D. candidate in sociology and a GROW member. “The messaging around Protect Purdue has played up personal responsibility and downplayed the responsibility of the institution and its administration. For students and community members to want to report cases, go to be tested and work with contact tracers, we have to destigmatize having coronavirus. The way this discussion is currently framed, it seems as though individuals who have COVID have failed to be responsible somehow. …
“In the end, it’s more about the choices the institution makes.”
About 80 percent of Purdue undergraduate courses will be offered in face-to-face or a hybrid in-person and online formats this fall, with the other 20 percent will be offered online, according to Jenna Rickus, interim vice provost for teaching and learning.
A series of faculty and staff surveys, sponsored this spring and summer by the faculty-led University Senate, have tracked the nerves about returning to campus. In early June, 52 percent of more than 8,000 who responded said they felt unsafe about going back to campus. Two follow-up surveys showed that percentage growing.
More:Coronavirus: ‘Foot on the gas,’ Mitch Daniels, Purdue trustees lay groundwork for bringing students back to campus this fall
In the first survey in June, 68 percent “felt highly stressed and anxious about reopening,” according to a University Senate analysis. In a follow-up released last week, 60 percent reported in July that they were more stressed than they had been in June; in August, 58 percent reported that their stress and anxiety levels had only increased.
That included doubts, from the very start, about how much stock Purdue should put in students to stick with social distancing.
More:‘X factor’ in Purdue’s reopening? Faith that students, staff buy in off campus, too, county health officer says
The surveys also showed that “confidence in others’ willingness to follow Purdue health and safety measures eroded” over the summer, according to the University Senate report.
“My confidence level has not changed,” Steve Martin, an economics professor, said. “I had no confidence in the decision to reopen the West Lafayette campus to residential instruction, and I still don’t. … I hope I am wrong.”
More:Purdue shatters enrollment records, as Mitch Daniels, trustees confident campus ready amid coronavirus
Martin said he was told last week that he’d be responsible to verify that students who showed up in his classroom had been cleared by the Protect Purdue Health Center. He said that for one undergraduate course, he had 37 students registered. Of those, 18 had not been cleared, as of Friday, under Purdue’s student COVID-19 testing protocols.
“Purdue has asked us to prepare ‘resilient’ courses, and I have done that,” Martin said. But if half the students are not supposed to be in the classroom, and all students are to be taking the same course, the course might as well be moved entirely online.”
More:Coronavirus: Greater Lafayette bars, restaurants ordered to close at midnight, limit capacity as Purdue ready to reopen
Andy Freed, a professor of earth, atmospheric and planetary sciences, is scheduled to teach two large lecture courses, using what the university called a “hyflex” approach. It’s a combination of in-person and online lectures meant to compensate for not having a lecture hall big enough to handle 500 students, all social distanced. Freed said students will have the option about how to get the lectures, with rotating invitations to be there for the live lecture – “as they have indicated that is what they want.”
Freed said his confidence level was never high that Purdue would make it to Thanksgiving before needing to go purely online.
More:Purdue reports 13 COVID-19 cases on campus since Aug. 1, new dashboard shows
“However, I believe that the administration has made the right decision in trying considering how important the campus experience is for our students and faculty, and many livelihoods on campus,” Freed said. “I have especially been impressed with the level of effort that the entire campus is making to try and make this work and at the same time being prepared to have to go fully online.
“If the effort fails I will be disappointed but will have no regrets.”
David Atkinson, who will teach a history course called “Society, Culture and Rock and Roll” as well as a graduate seminar this semester, will have 100 of his 200 undergrads in the classroom at a time.
“Personally, I vacillate between excitement, despondence and uncertainty,” Atkinson said. “I know Purdue has done an immense amount of work to try and make this work, but I also assume much of the drive to reopen was predicated on the assumption of a rational, reasonable and effective national public health response in the intervening six months that simply never happened. … At this point it’s simply a case of jumping in on Monday and seeing what happens.”
More:Purdue reopening plan jitters spill over at West Lafayette City Council
Michael McNamara, an associate professor in the Rueff School of Design, Art and Performance, said the past week – from other schools pulling back to dozens Purdue students getting suspended for off-campus parties that violated the social distance guidelines in what the university called the Protect Purdue Pledge – signal that schools didn’t understand or didn’t want to understand how traditional college behavior and a pandemic couldn’t mix.
“President Daniels has said there is an almost 0 percent chance of a young person dying from COVID-19,” McNamara said. “I think there is an almost 0 percent chance of us staying in-person until Thanksgiving, because the university isn’t just young people. I doubt we’ll make it past September.”
Daniels was already on the record about that, telling the J&C on Aug. 7, the day trustees ratified the Protect Purdue Plan and a schedule that ran in-person into late November and finished the final weeks remotely: “No one can say with confidence that we can make it to Thanksgiving.”
This week, as Daniels – who has insisted, including before a U.S. Senate committee hearing this summer, that Purdue students wanted to be back on campus so badly that they would prove skeptics wrong and toe the line of a Protect Purdue Pledge – rolled out new student conduct rules aimed at off-campus parties.
More:Coronavirus: The scene outside Harry’s and what it means for Purdue’s plans to reopen this fall
“Far and away the biggest risk in all of this,” he said.
Daniels said the Protect Purdue effort remained a work in progress. That included signing the student conduct rule on Wednesday and, on Friday, adding ongoing testing for students and staff once the semester starts.
“What you’ve seen is we’re prepared to promptly add more protective measures as we identify them,” Daniels said. “Here’s the latest one. And I’ll bet anything it won’t be the last. We just have to learn from the experience of others and, pretty soon here, our own.”
What would it take to send Purdue back to remote learning? Daniels said he wasn’t ready to commit to that. That echoed what David Broecker, chief innovation officer for Purdue Research Foundation and head of the Protect Purdue Implementation Team, said in early August during a series of online campus forums about reopening. Broecker contingency plans were being built around potential surges on campus and in the community.
“We don’t necessarily have any hard and fast rules right now about ‘X percent’ is going to trigger some action,” Broecker said, at the time.
Dr. Jeremy Adler, Tippecanoe County’s health officer, last week said a decision like that for Purdue – and even for Greater Lafayette’s K-12 schools – would depend on the number of new COVID-19 cases, hospital rates and capacity, emergency room visits for respiratory illnesses, among other data.
“But it’s very difficult to predict exactly what will happen at Purdue,” Adler said. “The health department will be monitoring local COVID-19 data, including Purdue’s, very closely on a daily basis.”
In the West Lafayette Village, a few blocks from campus, Dan St. John found himself promoting a counter-intuitive message as students flocked back to town for the first time since March. St. John owns four Village Bottle Shop locations, the only liquor stores in West Lafayette. He’d lost sales from one of his biggest weekends of the year in the spring when Purdue left ahead of Grand Prix festivities. This fall, there will be no Purdue football – “our Christmas,” he said.
The start of the school year typically means big numbers overall for Village Bottle Shop, including large individual sales where someone spends several hundreds of dollars. This week, St. John posted a note on Facebook, saying: “This year, that’s the last thing I want to see.” His advice? Go small, get together with a few close friends, no big parties. He called Daniels’ new rules a smart move.
“It’s not like we’re going to turn a switch and kids just aren’t going to drink,” St. John said. “Like I said, you can see what happened at those other schools.
“This is a weird position to be in,” he said. “But I hope we have a crappy year. Hate to say that. But if we have a crappy year, that’s a good year for Purdue and for everyone who depends on Purdue. … What the university is doing, we’re all hoping it works.”
Contributing: J&C photographer Nikos Frazier. Reach Dave Bangert at 765-420-5258 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow on Twitter: @davebangert.
my parents are not independently wealthy but refuse to let me work in the public while COVID is happening?
I work online. What I do is not a scam, and it’s very real.
I have my own business, and I work online.
Because you are high risk then I would actually recommend that you work online like me, but since you are not knowledgeable in this area then I suggest you go back to school, and study the right type of field, so you can work online.
I don’t have to speak with people face to face, and in person. I work remotely!
I could work with people in an office, or in something else, but the final outcome would be me ending up to work remotely, so I don’t think it matters where I work. All that matters is that I am given work.
Regarding what I do, for a living. I am able to work probably in EVERY country around the world even though I am located in 1 country. I can get paid online, so I don’t have to get paid in any other way even though I could get paid in other ways.
I have my own website that I made, so people can see what I offer.
Anyway it’s your decision what you want to do. You are a fully grown adult, so if you want to work side by side with other people, and if you get infected, and then you die then you can only blame yourself.
Graduation shows connections matter, even with online school
WINTER SPRINGS, Fla. (AP) – When schools closed this spring and students were sent home to study online, Kai Mercado vanished.
He completed no assignments; he didn’t even log in to see what work he had for his classes at Winter Springs High School. Just a few months shy of graduation, the teenager became a “ghost,” the school principal’s term for students who disappeared once the campus shut down.
“I gave up on everything,” the 18-year-old said. “I didn’t do anything. I didn’t even look at my grades. My teachers emailed me, and I never responded.”
As a new school year is set to begin, with more than half of Seminole County’s public school students studying from home, Kai Mercado’s story is a reminder that personal connections remain key in education, even when students can’t be on campus.
In the spring, Kai’s mother pleaded, cajoled and prayed for her slim son with a shock of black wavy hair to get started on his work. When that didn’t help, she contacted one of his teachers.
With phone calls, texts, home visits, patience, encouragement and lunch from McDonald’s, educators wooed him back to class, the online version put in place when schools shut down to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
Just before midnight, on the last day of 2019-20 school year, he texted his history teacher – the same one his panicked mother had contacted weeks earlier for help. “FINISHED EVERYTHING!!” he wrote. Kai graduated with the class of 2020 in a ceremony last month.
“We’re going to continue to bridge all those relationships,” said Pete Gaffney, Winter Springs’ principal, as he readied for the new school year. “It’s essential in education right now,” he said. “It made the difference.”
Jessica Mercado started worrying soon after schools closed in mid-March. Kai, a talented artist, seemed deflated, and even his drawings seemed darker.
Admittedly never a great student, and already scrambling to make up credits, Kai said he felt “down and discouraged” once he stopped going to school. He kept sketching and painting, but he had “zero confidence” he could complete his school work, so he did none of it.
“For him to throw his hands up in defeat, that I think was my greatest fear,” his mother said.
Frustrated, she emailed his teacher Schowonda Williams-Johnson for help.
Soon, Kai was on Octavius Clark’s home-visit list.
Clark was the school’s dean of students, and Gaffney had asked him to contact the “ghosts” in person, packing his car with face masks and other PPE and then tracking down teenagers like Kai who weren’t doing any work.
“I turned into a truancy officer,” Clark said.
Many days, he’d drive around Winter Springs and sometimes north to Sanford and south to Casselberry to find the school’s missing.
When he showed up at Kai’s house, Mercado woke up her son and sent him outside to speak with the dean.
Kai listened respectfully as Clark spoke. On campus, he was polite and never a discipline problem, the dean said, so he wasn’t surprised.
But Kai didn’t think he could finish 12th grade having skipped weeks of work. Though ashamed he’d upset his mother, Kai said he didn’t see graduation as a possibility. He’d given up, and didn’t know why Clark had bothered with a home visit.
“He had gone into that dark room and didn’t want to come out,” Clark said. “As an educator, it was my job to get him out of the dark cave.”
Clark, a veteran educator who also served for years in the U.S. Air Force, was insistent, compassionate and practical. A diploma would keep doors open, he told him, and quitting was a terrible example for his younger sisters and for a 9-year-old cousin he adored.
He pushed Kai to get started on his school work that day, and the teen said he would.
So Clark showed up again the next day, at lunch time with a bag of food from McDonald’s for Kai.
“OK, this guy really wants me to graduate,” Kai thought. “I’m going to at least just try.”
And then, finally, he did.
Williams-Johnson, his history teacher in the credit-recovery program designed for students who were behind, had been trying to contact him. Once his mother reached out, she made sure he knew he could email or text when he needed help.
Kai’s guidance counselor showed him that finishing was still possible, though he had a lot of work to complete. Clark continued to check in, sometimes in person and with food. “I was not going to give up,” he said.
“They stood up, and they were strong for me and my kid,” Mercado said. “I don’t even know how to express my gratitude.”
Despite his sometimes poor grades, Kai is smart and did his work when in class, Williams-Johnson said.
But like plenty of others, once at home, without a schedule and teachers to monitor his progress, he floundered.
“He was motivated once he realized there was a support team, that there was someone that cared,” she said. Without that, she added, “I honestly think he would have been lost.”
Though there were some stops and starts, she could see Kai was making progress. She heard from him often. “Can you help me?” he texted. “Can I call you now?”
On the phone, when she asked him questions, she could tell he’d done the required reading. Still, finishing was a scramble, right until the end.
Classes ended May 27, and it wasn’t until 9:10 p.m. that night that he texted, “Hey, Ms. Williams. I just turned in my last assignment for world history.”
It was nearly three hours later when he completed all his work for the semester, but he made it.
Clark said it was the kind of ending all educators want. “It felt so good. It felt so good,” he said.
His mother, who heard Kai’s joyful shout from his bedroom when he was done, was elated, relieved and thankful.
Her son, once so discouraged, seemed proud of himself. Weeks later, she found him in his bedroom, his art work spread out all over the floor, his mind on his future. He’s now registered at Valencia College, planning to study art and business.
Kai said he realized, almost as soon as he submitted his last high school assignment, that there was wisdom in his mom’s advice not to quit.
“I had a smile on my face,” he said. “I took a shower and went to sleep smiling.”
Copyright © 2020 The Washington Times, LLC.
Author: The Washington Times http://www.washingtontimes.com
No work started on Wales cold storage, agro-processing project
– 200 acres prime, waterfront lands gifted to foreign company
‘Work harder than everyone’: Kamala Harris’ background resonates with other women of color making history
Mae Jemison was in kindergarten when the teacher asked what she wanted to be when she grew up.
“A scientist,” Jemison beamed.
The teacher looked down at the young Black girl and corrected her: “You mean a nurse?”
“I said, ‘No, a scientist,’” Jemison, 63, recently recalled. “She was trying to give me something that was achievable from her perspective. But that wasn’t going to work for me. I wanted to go places.”
Jemison went into space as the first Black female astronaut in NASA history, leveraging her skills as a biomedical engineer to become part of the Space Shuttle Endeavor’s eight-day orbit of Earth in 1992.
A fierce sense of mission, an abundance of inner drive and a dedication to mentorship are traits Jemison shares with other pioneering women of color, including U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris.
As Joe Biden’s choice for vice president on the Democratic ticket, Harris, 55, has notched yet another first in a career of firsts: the first woman of color — daughter of an Indian mother, Shyamala Gopalan, and Jamaican father, Donald Harris — on a presidential ticket for a major party, the first woman of color attorney general of California, the first woman of color district attorney of San Francisco.
Women who made a difference:USA TODAY Names “100 Women of the Century” to Commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the 19th Amendment
Conversations with women of color who have achieved firsts in a range of fields, including science, sports and politics, reveal striking similarities.
The women describe being focused on achievement from an early age; an unwillingness to bow to societal pressure; welcoming the support of mentors of various races; and proudly and frustratingly having to work harder than white peers to achieve the same results.
Another foundational trait: wanting not so much success, but to make a difference.
Harris declined to be interviewed about her trailblazing path, but those who have gotten to know her well describe a woman with a steely resolve, tireless work ethic and unyielding commitment to a cause.
“Kamala has had so many doubters along the way simply because she did not fit the profile of her predecessors,” says Brian Brokaw, a political consultant based in Sacramento, California, who ran Harris’ 2010 attorney general campaign. “But she has a remarkable ability to not just tune out doubters, but to turn that into fuel to drive her.”
Harris was 38 in 2002 when she set her sights on the DA job. An unknown candidate running against a popular incumbent, Terence Hallinan, Harris beat him in a run-off thanks to a grassroots campaign buttressed by a political kingmaker, former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown, the city’s first Black leader.
When she later ran for the state attorney general position in 2010, she was battling for a job that had been the domain of white males dating back decades. In both instances, Harris’ victories set the stage for other people of color to achieve their own firsts.
One of the volunteers on her 2010 AG campaign was London Breed, who in 2018 became the first Black woman to be mayor of San Francisco. And when Harris moved to Washington, D.C., as a California senator in 2016, her successor was Xavier Becerra, the first Latino attorney general in the state’s history.
Former advisor Brokaw recalls something Harris would say “a million times over,” an admonition her mother, a formative influence, would tell daughters Kamala and Maya.
“She would tell them, ‘Kamala, you might be the first to do what you do, but just make sure you are not the last,’” says Brokaw. “There’s a sense with Kamala and others like her that the point of success also is to pave the way for others to thrive.”
Jennifer Martineau and Portia Mount interviewed many women for the book “Kick Some Glass: 10 Ways Women Succeed at Work On Their Own Terms.” Their subjects all described being driven by “a sense of purpose and intention, they didn’t go into careers thinking about salary or title but rather a mission,” says Martineau.
“For most women, a sense of tenacity is required, but for women of color they almost have to find yet another gear to break through the barriers they often run into,” says Martineau, founder of the workplace consultancy Leap and Inspire Global.
Women of color who honor their roots often have the best shot at achieving groundbreaking firsts, says Laura Morgan Roberts, professor at the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville and author of “Race, Work and Leadership: New Perspectives on the Black Experience.”
“Black women aren’t expected to be leaders, they’re often even mistaken for the secretary, so those who are successful develop a powerful authenticity within their leadership style that stays true to their cultural heritage and gender,” says Morgan Roberts, who conducted a study of Harvard Business School graduates that made it into the C-suite at various businesses.
“Many talked about sponsors and mentors who helped out, but largely these women didn’t try and blend into their white male counterparts, and it paid off,” she says.
Most of all, they worked harder than the next person. Since she was a young girl growing up in Minneapolis, Tamara Moore, 40, was obsessed with basketball and in particular the Chicago Bulls. For each game, she would pull out a piece of paper and chart ever shot, every assist, ever block.
“I didn’t look at it as me taking stats of a men’s game,” she says. “It was just basketball.”
A few months ago, Moore notched her own national first when she was the first Black woman to be named head coach of a men’s college basketball program, Mesabi Range College in Virginia, Minnesota.
That appointment crowned a stellar playing career at the University of Wisconsin at Madison and five years in the WNBA, followed by other high school coaching stints and the founding of a men’s semi-pro league, the 40-team Official Basketball Association.
More:Women of the Century: Six trailblazing women to share personal stories in special event
Moore shrugs off pioneer labels, pointing instead to the various women of color who have achieved great success mostly coaching women’s collegiate programs. She does say that when it came time to meeting her new team, she was eager to get any issues of sex or race on the table early. But that wasn’t necessary.
“I met with the guys, to let them decide if they wanted to play for me, so I started to go through my resume and when I got to ‘drafted by the WNBA,’ they said, ‘OK, we’re in,’” Moore laughs.
For her, success has simply meant staying true to that little girl who would take stats during every Bulls game.
“Whatever your passion is, put it all into that, don’t worry about outside voices,” she says. “Stay focused, and if you get knocked down, get up.”
That commitment to putting in more hours than the competition echoes for many women of color who have broken through barriers.
“The definition of being a person of color in a society dominated by Caucasian leadership is when you’re just good, it’s not good enough,” says Phyllis Wise, a Chinese American biomedical researcher who in 2010 became the first woman, as well as first Asian American, president of the University of Washington in Seattle.
“I can’t tell you how many men in academia screw up and get a second chance,” she says. “But when we make a mistake, we speak for a whole gender or race and rarely get another try.”
Wise is CEO and president of the Colorado Longitudinal Study based in Aurora, a non-profit that is building a bank of biological samples to learn more about tracking diseases in their earliest stages. She was the daughter of two biologists “who expected me to excel, not so much to break down barriers but just to make the best use of the brain I was given.”
For Wise, Harris represents “the ultimate ambitious woman of color, and I mean that word in the best sense.” Her own lifelong sense of ambition saw Wise hustle quickly up the ladder of academic success, only to hit a roadblock when she served as chancellor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
“Let’s just say that many people there were not happy with how ambitious I was,” says Wise, noting that her drive was more welcome in Seattle, home to many Asian Americans. “My advice to women of color is develop a network of supporters and mentors you can count on and use them to get you through the tough times.”
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That support network has steadily been growing. After centuries in which largely white and male faces dominated society’s top positions, more women of color are making inroads in a broad array of professions.
Finance world maven Mellody Hobson, president of Ariel Investments and wife of “Star Wars” creator George Lucas, became the first Black woman to head The Economic Club of Chicago in 2017. Last year, Ashely James became the Guggenheim museum’s first Black woman curator. Early this year, the comedian Awkwafina, co-star of “Crazy Rich Asians,” became the first Asian American to win a Golden Globe for Best Actress.
Perhaps nowhere is the recent progress of women of color most evident than in politics, where of the 127 women (of more than 500 total members) serving in the 116th Congress, some 40% are of color, including upstarts Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-New York) and Ilhan Omar (D-Minnesota).
“Once you get those firsts in there, then people like you see their futures differently, they start imagining themselves in that same position,” says U.S. Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Washington), the first South Asian Woman elected to the House of Representatives. Her other firsts include being the only woman of color in Washington’s state Senate when she was serving there, and the only person of color the state had ever sent to Congress.
“Things are better today, but we started from such a low place and are not yet close to where we want to be,” says Jayapal, 54, whose recent book is “Use The Power You Have: A Brown Woman’s Guide to Politics and Political Change.”
Her book urges women of color to trust themselves and “be willing to work harder than everyone else around you, because that’s the world we live in.”
Jayapal, who came to the U.S. alone at age 16 for college at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.,attributes her drive to her Indian parents, particularly the women in her family. Her great aunt, PK Devi, was the first female OB-GYN in India who wrote the definitive textbook for medical schools. In a small-world twist, one of Devi’s mentees was Sarala Gopalan — Sen. Harris’ aunt on her mother’s side.
“Women of color are part of the future of this country,” says Jayapal. “When I work on policy issues with Kamala, who is the daughter of two immigrant parents, I don’t ever have to wonder whether she understands where many of our citizens are coming from.”
Lina Hidalgo, 29, is one such American. She was born in Colombia and lived in Peru and Mexico before emigrating to the U.S. at age 14. In 2018, Hidalgo became the first Latina and first woman elected as county judge of Harris County, Texas. The job entails overseeing the $5 billion budget apportioned for Houston and other cities around the county, the largest in the state.
“When I looked into running, most people said a county judge needs to be an engineer, it’s about buildings and bridges, you should just run for school board, but that slid off me,” says Hidalgo, whose county is 43% Latino and 30% white. “I made up my mind I had to do this for the community.”
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Since her victory, Hidalgo says many other Latinos in her county have reached out to thank her for serving as a role model, particularly for their daughters. She says Harris’ ascent to the Democratic ticket is “totally amazing” and bound to inspire others.
“This is about updating our perception of what a government leader looks like,” she says.
For former astronaut Jemison, who currently helms the 100 Year Starship project to explore interstellar flight for all humans, the notion that success is limited to a select few women of color is a myth.
“When I joined NASA, it seemed special because of the barriers put up for people like me, but the truth was that I did not see myself as the only person who could have done this, there were many women who could have, Black, white and Asian,” she says, citing as her own personal heroine Bessie Coleman, a Floridian who a century ago became the first woman of Black and Native American ancestry to get a pilot’s license.
Jemison says true breakthrough moments aren’t public but private, such as when she decided she had to go through parachute training to become an astronaut despite being terrified of heights. Or when she defiantly told her kindergarten teacher what she truly wanted to become.
She cautions against turning Harris into a mere trivia game answer and instead urges anyone who admires her path to “recognize that she’s there because of great skills, great intellect, great passion and a great work ethic.”
Work. In the end, these women say, it all circles back to that. And once your work ethic delivers the results, don’t stop there.
“You must believe you can do whatever you want, and work for it,” she says. “Then once you get it, ask yourself simply, ‘What am I going to do with my place at the table?'”
Follow USA TODAY National Correspondent Marco della Cava: @marcodellacava