TENT is a private social network for professional women of color

Marie-Anne E. Prah and Onanma Okeke are the co-founders of TENT, a private social network to help young, professional women of color navigate their careers. 

Prah and Okeke launched TENT in November 2020. Prah is also working towards her MBA in healthcare leadership at Cornell, while Okeke works as a designer at Reddit. As young professionals building a name for themselves within their competitive careers, Prah and Okeke understand how important it is to provide a space like TENT for women of color.

“TENT is a network of women of color really coming together to discuss how to change careers, how to build their careers and how to pivot. We have members from 35 countries, we hope to expand that. We want to grow our university program,” Okeke explained to In The Know. 

The network, with over 1,500 members, currently has a waitlist you can join and an app in development. The app will host a job board, community feed and networking event opportunities.

TENT currently has a job board on its site that has been vetted by the TENT team to ensure that each company with an opening has an “intentional stance on Diversity and Inclusion.”

“I don’t expect that if inclusivity becomes a normal thing in big businesses, it would just automatically be easier for Black people,” Prah said. “We’re just asking to build community so that when we try and get into these very high positions, we have a plan.” 

“Women of color often stand at the intersection of multiple barriers, experiencing the combined effects of racial, gender, ethnic and other forms of bias while navigating systems and institutional structures,” Jocelyn Frye wrote for the Center for American Progress. “Many women of color have to grapple with negative stereotypes and attitudes that affect how they are treated at work, whether they can provide care for their families and whether they can access the quality health care that they need without bias and discrimination.”

This is why a community like TENT is so vital for women of color.

“[With TENT there are] a lot of women that we can contact to strategize and figure out how to get into those places,” Prah added. “[And] figure out how to get into those places that are typically very hard to get [into].”

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If you enjoyed reading this interview, check out In The Know’s interview with Fat Girls Traveling, which challenges the lack of diversity and inclusion in travel culture.

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