By Jamé Jackson
$200. That was all I had in my bank account when I moved from my hometown of Washington, D.C. to New York City this past summer.
I had finally realized that NYC was calling my name when I attended a conference put on by ColorComm (a professional organization for women of color working in the communications industry). In the middle of keynote speaker’s Ariana Huffington talk, I had an epiphany—I needed to pursue my dreams of going into publishing in New York. After applying frantically to whatever I could find that suited my variety of skills (using Ed’s Whisper Jobs, of course), I found myself in the Big Apple that August—though I was far from finished paying my dues.
This is not a unique story. You see, there are so many people like me who have picked up their lives and fearlessly gone after the things they want. It’s scary, intimidating, and quite honestly, expensive. In a city like New York, where the average two-bedroom is going to cost you much more than what most entry-level positions are paying, it can feel like your dreams and reality never get to meet.
But money should never stop you from getting yourself into the room where it happens. As I thought back to the amazing time I had at ColorComm’s 2016 conference, I realized that there were not enough people my age in the room, profiting from these amazing resources and networking opportunities. Chances are, many of them couldn’t afford it or were still too new on the job to get corporate sponsorship.
Thus, ColorComm’s Fellows Program 2017 was hatched. Those who are selected will benefit from career building, mentorship, and networking opportunities at the 2017 ColorComm Conference as well as with local chapters throughout the year. The only requirements: you must be a woman of color between the ages of 21 and 26 who is pursuing a career in the communications industry. Interested? Hurry and submit your application through the portal by May 1, 2017!
(Psst… Are you interning this summer for free? You can also apply for Ed’s Trust Fund; the deadline is May 1.)
Jamé Jackson is a motivational speaker and founder of TheBlondeMisfit.com, a website geared toward women in the style, beauty, and entertainment industries. Based in New York City, she can also be seen spreading love, female empowerment, and her must-have beauty obsessions through her Instagram.