Jacqueline “Jackie” Emerson is by no means a typical nineteen-year-old. Within the span of less than two decades, she has starred in a major Hollywood blockbuster alongside Jennifer Lawrence, started two organizations, and sang in a band! We were so fortunate to have her moderate the opening plenary on Youth Innovation at YTH Live 2014.
I decided to chat with Jackie, find out more about her work and learn how she does it all!
1. Can you describe your work with She’s So Boss and Real Talk and what they mean to you?
She’s So Boss is a website about helping girls find their inner boss. It’s a multimedia platform with a book coming out, a TV series, a web series and stuff like that. Actually, for the web series, I’ve been interviewing girls around the country age 16-26, and that was really cool. We also have this project called 20×20. Its main goal is to have 20 million girl bosses by 2020.
Real Talk is a branch of She’s So Boss. It’s still under development, but we have lots of ideas for it. Recently, we did a video for Real Talk featuring celebrities talking into the camera for 27 seconds each. We have tons of more ideas for it, so stay tuned for details!
2. Can you tell us who else is involved in the organizations and what it’s like working with them?
Adrian Becker (a YTH board member) is the head of Glass Elevator Media, which is the company that maintains She’s So Boss. She is the boss-est woman I have ever met in my entire life. She does so much! Talk about time management, even in New York, she gets stuff done, and she’s so smart… and is someone who constantly inspires me every day. She’s So Boss wouldn’t be happening if it wasn’t for her. She’s truly, truly, an inspiration.
Stacy Kravetz is the writer of Girl Boss, which came out in the 90s, and she’s the one writing She’s So Boss [the book] right now. Her writing is what She’s So Boss is based on… She just understands the way the world works, in a way that a lot of people don’t, and her book, I’ve read it, I mean, it made me so empowered and kind of changed the way how I felt. So, I think she’s absolutely amazing.
Devin Lytle (a panelist at YTH Live) was in A Very Potter Musical. She was actually the one that came with a very early idea of Real Talk. So, we all sat down and had a fantastic meeting and developed Real Talk.
3. Besides acting and running your organizations, what do you enjoy doing in your free time?
I love to songwrite, and sing and play piano. And I LOVE to read; I’m a total bookworm. I love being outside and enjoying nature. I love hanging out with friends, just chilling and watching movies and throwing dance parties. [Laughs]
4. How has it been with balancing your school life, personal life, and acting career while working on She’s So Boss and Real Talk?
I’m not going to lie… it’s hard to be a full-time college student as well as being in different shows and having to travel back and forth to LA or New York and attend meetings and organizing over Skype conversations or phone calls. But it’s what makes me excited to get up every morning and makes my day because I get so excited about it and love it so much. I hope other people will soon feel the same way.
5. Is there someone you admire and model yourself after? Or, do you prefer creating your own path?
Often, the people that inspire me are the people that I look up to. Most of them are my mom, my dad, I’d definitely say Evad Decker, she’s one of them, my godmother, people that inspire me on a day-to-day basis… Yeah, I still want to create my own path, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t have other sources of inspiration, as well. Oh, and Oprah! Oprah’s a huge inspiration of mine. I absolutely love her.
6. Do you have any advice for young innovators like yourself who are having trouble starting their own organizations?
This is going to sound really cheesy, but never stop dreaming and thinking big! Work your butt off day-to-day, push and shove, don’t let negativity get to you and affect your hopes and goals because you’ll make it. You will.
You’ve heard it from Jackie, everyone. Don’t be afraid to chase after your dreams.
Kunal Arora (@koolkunal95) is a member of YTH’s Youth Advisory Board.
Kunal is a tech geek and Lady Gaga lover, with plans to pursue a career in medicine. He recently expressed his interest in sexual health through his articles and blog posts on Sex, Etc. +Learn more about Kunal
Image by Stephen Texeira Photography
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