Published by Penguin on November 8, 2022
Genres: Young Adult Nonfiction / Biography & Autobiography / Social Activists, Young Adult Nonfiction / Social Topics / General, Young Adult Nonfiction / Technology / General
"This frank, spirited guide spotlights a thoughtful leader who embraces social responsibility." — Kirkus
With witty humor and a strong sense of self, musician, model, and technology executive Shavone Charles recounts her journey through Google, Twitter, and more – and outlines her mission to make space for herself and other young women of color both online and IRL.
Pocket Change Collective was born out of a need for space. Space to think. Space to connect. Space to be yourself. And this is your invitation to join us. This is a series of small books with big ideas from today's leading activists and artists.
"The right balance of curiosity and good old nerve has always pushed me toward good directions in my life. During the darkest, most discouraging times, I can lean on those two parts of me." In this installment of the Pocket Change Collective, musician and technology phenom Shavone Charles explores how curiosity and nerve led her from a small college in Merced, California, to some of the most influential spaces in the tech world: from Google to Twitter to eventually landing a spot on the coveted Forbes 30 Under 30 list. Grateful for being the first in many spaces, but passionate about being neither the last nor the only, Charles tells her story in the hopes of guiding others and shaping a future where people, particularly women of color, feel empowered to make space for themselves and challenge society’s status quos.
Do you know a high school senior or a college student who is wondering what their next step is going to be? Are they concerned about their first job or internship and how they might fit in as their first time in the workplace? I recommend that they check out the story of Shavone Charles in her book Black Internet Effect.
Turning Isolation into Community
Shavone discusses her thinking behind why she chose to be a workplace advocate for employees of color. Because she graduated from a small college, she felt like an outsider when she landed a coveted internship at Google. As a young Black woman in the workplace she also had to deal with an added a layer of discomfort and isolation in her experience.
Shavone describes her journey from Merced College to internships at Google and Twitter (where she landed her first job.) She talks about how she found community for herself and created safe spaces for her colleagues of color to find community as well. She also talks about why it is important for women of color, in particular, to feel empowered in the work place.
This is a short, but powerful book. I love that Black Internet Effect is only 64 pages. It creates a space for a reader who may feel overwhelmed with longer texts. They can now accomplish the goal of finishing a book in a short amount of time. The style, topics and format of the books in the Pocket Change Collection have gotten me to brainstorm ways these books could be included in curriculum. They address interesting and relevant topics, are written by youth close to the age of high school students and are brief so that discussion can occur in depth about the entire book.