Some say that the Millennial generation is disrupting the workforce by not adhering to the traditional standards of work. However, more and more studies have shown that millennials are taking matters into their own hands and creating solutions to some of the issues we face in the workforce with regards to diversity and inclusion.
Project 99 is an organization for millennials by millennials, aiming to bridge the gap in diverse leadership for Generation Y. Project 99 was founded by recent Babson College graduates—Yulkendy Valdez and Josuel Plasencia.
“Early on, we were working on independent projects for U.N. development goals,” says Valdez. “Eventually, we said, let’s do a program for young girls in the Dominican Republic.”
This program later on evolved to be Project 99. Together, Valdez and Plasencia are creating a movement—30 by 2030. This movement is working to get thirty percent of Black and Latinx Senior Leadership by the year 2030. In October of 2017, Project 99 will be introducing their 30 by 2030 Summit, which will bring together approximately 100 millennials from some of the country’s top companies.
“This is the first hub of its kind that is advancing Latinx and Black millennials for corporate jobs,” says Valdez. “Giving them the space to advance, to explore, and navigate identity.”
The Project 99 team want to ensure the comfort of identity for millennials through their race, style, upbringing, and values. As a platform dedicated to millennials of color, Project 99 intends for their summit and program to offer networking opportunities that go beyond the conversational surface and take action.
“We want to make sure that everyone has a seat at the table and that they get to stay at the table,” says Plasencia.
Their program is focused on training millennials to gain the tools necessary to achieve the 30 by 2030 goal. Project 99 is doing this through cohort-based training, where they work with groups of employees from within a company for a year.
As recent college graduates, both Valdez and Plasencia have decided to pursue Project 99 full-time to focus on growing the company and becoming part of the movement to make Corporate America more equitable and inclusive.
To learn more about Project 99, click here.