Andrea Warren pushed her hand through her thick, dark hair and sighed. The project was not going how she wanted it to go. Her partners were well-intentioned, but they really had no idea what the neighborhood they were working with needed. Everybody she was working with was white and gave little to no thought to the needs of the black kids or understood what their lives were like.
Of course she tried to voice her thoughts, but mostly the project was out of her hands. Sometimes the white people would be surprised by her input, and equally uncomfortably; sometimes everyone would turn to her because she was the only black woman there and assume she knew exactly what they wanted to hear.
"Colored people like rap music, right? Should we play that in the lobby?" or, her personal favorite, "Maybe we shouldn't have a playground - don't those get snatched up right away in turf wars?" Andrea let her pencil drop, frustrated, and listened to Mary Leopold speak again in her nasally voice about the importance of aesthetic design.