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This piece was originally published on Join Interact, as part of a series spotlighting their community members. Interact is a community of mission-driven technologists. Applications for the 2019 cohort of fellows are open until January 31, 2019. Find more information at http://joininteract.com New York, New York — Ari Melenciano lives, breathes and thrives in the space where art, technology, and activism meet. A polymath in the truest and sincerest sense of the word, Melenciano is a Brooklyn-based and interdisciplinary artist, designer, creative technologist, researcher, educator, activist and DJ who explores the relationships between

I am indigenous. I am also white. My lineage is that of the colonized and the colonizer, both influencing my identity, beliefs, and voice. As an African American woman and C-level executive in Silicon Valley, I have spent the past 20 years of my life building teams and companies that have changed American culture. Technology companies occupy a position of cultural and economic influence—one that comes with a responsibility to ask yourself how to build a better world with what you’re building and how you’re building it. At Abstract, we see inclusive hiring as

Tell us a bit about yourself and what you do? I’m Bria, and I am a software engineer at Google. At Google, for my 100% time, I help aggregate data across all of Googles ads tools and generate reports and slide decks for our sales team just so our partners can optimize the money that they spend at Google on advertising. Then I do a lot of volunteering on behalf of Google! Is that the famous 20% time? Yeah. I did a 20% time project for the first two years

Like most children, Asta Li grew up with ambitious and ever-changing career goals. One day, she would envision herself as an artist, or perhaps a designer. Another day, it seemed as though architecture was the perfect path to pursue her interest in art. As a first-generation American, she wanted to continue something that would guarantee financial security. Asta first began coding at the age of 13, when she took a C++ class at a local community college. She settled upon this course while looking to expand her skill set, as

Growing up in a country where traditional gender roles are still somewhat prevalent, Samira Korani, decided to break the mold of society’s standards and dive into a field of work no one considered she would. While Iran is seeing increasing numbers of women pursuing STEM fields, many women there continue to face the same challenges as their female counterparts around the world. Samira’s steadfast fixation on her dream, however, never left room for her to doubt her desire to help bring Iran into the future using artificial intelligence and machine learning. Discovering

When Brittney Ball was pregnant and homeless in Washington DC, she never imagined she would be a successful software engineer, public speaker, and mentor just six short years later. But with hard work and determination, she has proven that your past doesn’t have to define your future. When Brittney found out she was expecting, she knew she had to get off the streets. The Salvation Army, Turning Point Center, opened their doors to provide transitional housing for Brittney and later her son, Liam. While there, she enrolled in Year Up,

“The most important thing is knowing that it’s going to be hard and that you’ll learn something every day. Over time, being patient enough for that to play out lets you get so far.” This was surely the case for Zorah Fung, who grew up with a passion for the arts; she played the guitar, bassoon and piano and even dreamed of becoming a graphic designer for Nickelodeon. Despite both of her parents being programmers, becoming a software engineer had been the last thing on her mind. But as the

Congratulations! You’ve made it to the day you’ve been dreaming about since you started the recruiting process: the day you receive your full-time employment offer. This is an honor. This is a blessing. But before we get blinded by the giddiness, we need to get one thing straight: sign on your own terms. Yes, the idea of money is so enticing and oh so close, but remember this is a negotiation. To get the most for yourself, you need to know your own worth. Then add tax. Letsgetit! Step 1: Consider

Shelly Bell has lived many lives. She’s a computer scientist, a former high school teacher, a performance poet, a community organizer, a founder, and a CEO. She has two successful apparel printing businesses: MsPrint USA—through which she creates swag for clients like Amazon and Google with a team of women designers and printers—and Made By A Black Woman, which celebrates products made by Black women. Every project Bell undertakes is designed to empower women, especially women of color, which is why two years ago, she began her latest enterprise, Black

A conversation with the hilarious ex Googler and now stand-up comic and author Sarah Cooper. We talk her career transition, Trump, Beyonce and Jay-Z and her brand new book: How to Be Successful Without Hurting Men’s Feelings: Non-threatening Leadership Strategies for Women I think the obvious question to start with is how does one go from being a Googler to a comic/author? It was all based on a viral article that I wrote called “10 tricks to appear smart meetings” I wrote while I was working at Google as a

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