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Share Your Stories About Being The "Only" Black Person At Work/School

From microaggressions to blatant racism.

Being the odd person out can be your chance to shine, or can invite unwanted attention full of prejudice and unfair treatment.

I learned first-hand that there can be two sides to being "the only one." Being the "first Black person" or a "token" can be a moment of triumph, while other moments can feel alienating or a source of unfair treatment.

President Obama in a crowd of white people

Being the only Black student in my college student government allowed me to bring attention to a lack of diversity and create new visibility for incoming students, increasing admissions to new programs and interest from students who looked like me.

On the flip side, being the only Black person as a teenager working at a restaurant, I once walked into a kitchen prank where the entire staff placed white paper bags over their heads with the eyes cut out to "scare me." They insisted it was only a little joke.

These stories, good or bad, can remain untold or taboo subjects. Fear of judgment or hesitation to bring unwanted attention leaves you holding your breath or accepting unfair treatment.

Now it's time to speak your truth! In the comments below, tell us your "Token Black" work experiences that either made you or broke you (if you want to remain anonymous, use Google Form).

The best responses will be featured in a BuzzFeed Community post!