Joshua Charles Photos: Maurice Ruiz, Rutgers University

Rutgers Today highlights the experience of two Black professionals from Rutgers Business School

For Black History Month, Rutgers Today asked professors, administrators, coaches and communicators from around the university to share their experiences as Black professionals. Two of the professionals included in the Professionally Black feature – Alfred Blake and Joshua Charles – are part of the Rutgers Business School community. The pieces capturing their words are republished here.

Joshua Charles

Director of Web Strategy and Technology, Rutgers Business School - Newark and New Brunswick

What is the most impactful lesson you’ve learned in your career so far? 

The most impactful lesson I’ve learned in my career so far is that I have to be my biggest cheerleader. It is a wonderful experience to have people in your corner to cheer for you, and I’m really thankful for that support. At the same time, I also know that in crucial moments like promotions and career advancement, no one can tell my story and impact better than I can. So, while I generally find it uncomfortable to talk about myself, I recognize the value of sharing my experiences. Even if that sometimes doesn’t help me directly, it can still help other people on similar paths in life. 

Introduce yourself as Josh the professional and then Josh the person. 

I would love to say that Josh the professional and Josh the person are the same, and to be fair, they share a lot of similarities. They both are curious, love helping others and give their best. I think one of the biggest differences, though, is that Josh the professional is specifically a Black professional, and certain things come with that experience. For example, dressing a certain way so that I don’t come across as a threat, and occasionally needing to project my expertise when meeting with stakeholders for the first time who might initially doubt what I can bring to the table.

Alfred Blake IV

Assistant Director of Undergraduate Entrepreneurship Programs, Rutgers Business School - Newark and New Brunswick

 See the video featuring Alfred Blake.

Alfred Blake of Rutgers Business School
Alfred Blake

See the entire Professionally Black feature.

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