Updated: Apr 22, 2021
Dominique, not her real name, is a Black electrical engineering doctoral student. She found herself in a difficult situation at a conference.
A white man thought a nearby Black woman was a hotel cleaner and asked her to clean their table. The woman did as she was asked, but she also told him that she was the main speaker at the conference. The man did not say he was sorry. He made a joke about how the woman could have two jobs.
Other white people at the table looked at Dominique waiting for her to approve of the joke. Dominique was not prepared for this. She acted as if she was laughing. The others laughed, too, but their laughter sounded real to her. Read More