We had the good fortune of connecting with Chantrice Rachelle and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Chantrice Rachelle, is your business focused on helping the community? If so, how?
Yes, I believe one of the best things that we can do for our community is to give back something that can never be taken away, and that is knowledge. We have to teach what’s been taught and I don’t mean the traditional subjects we learn in grade school. When I say that, I’m referring to the subjects that are essential in everyday life. Project SWATS was founded with the mission of “Sharing Wisdom And Tools for Success” in topics that are typically neglected in the traditional classroom setting. The foundation of Project SWATS is our Five Pillars of Wisdom (College Wisdom, Professional Wisdom, Personal Wisdom, Financial Wisdom, and Tech Wisdom) which includes topics that aren’t heavily focused on in the traditional education curriculum, yet are very necessary for us to elevate to various levels of success. Over the years, through conversations and interactions with youth and my peers, I realized this need for knowledge in my community. Project SWATS helps the community by being a hub for the empowerment and educational betterment of young adults and millennials in urban communities. It is important that as we elevate our knowledge, we share the game with others so that we can all get further ahead in life. I think back to just a decade ago, some of the things that I know now I wish I had known then because I would be so much further ahead. However, you don’t know what you don’t know, until you realize you need to know. Project SWATS is here to not only help you realize what you need to know but to also provide you with the wisdom and tools that are necessary for the knowledge.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’d like to think of myself as a renaissance woman. I am a multi-passionate creative with many talents and endeavors. In the 8-5 professional world, I am an IT Program Manager at a Fortune 10 company. Information Technology has been an area of interest since I was in elementary school; and realizing how much of a lucrative field it was, I pursued it in my undergrad and graduate studies. I eventually landed a job in my field and have had the opportunity to work with a variety of teams in various areas of IT. While IT is my “day job,” my main passion is continuing to grow Project SWATS to help others become more educated in those areas that we don’t get a proper education. That is where the mentor and speaker in me exists- I have always loved sharing my knowledge and empowering others to elevate in various aspects. I am also a self-taught Podcast Producer and Host. I am currently working on my second podcast (my first as a solo host), “The Urban Success” which is somewhat of an extension of Project SWATS, as it will highlight success stories from urban cities and share wisdom of how they “wrote” their success stories. The goal of The Urban Success Podcast is to inspire listeners to keep pushing to accomplish their successes. Lastly, I’d be remiss if I neglected to acknowledge my first love of Art. I am a visual artist- I love to draw, paint, and create digital content. However, my art is done leisurely and when necessary for my projects; thus, I currently do not create commissioned works. Ok, whew- that was quite a bit. There are a few other projects that I am working on, but I have to keep them quiet for now. In the words of one of my favorite musical artists, Drake, “I do a lot of things hoping I never have to fit in, so tryna keep up with my progress is like a dead-end.”

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Ok, so if my friend was visiting for a week and was not from Atlanta, I would definitely take them to a few hoods. I know that may sound crazy to some, but I want to give them an up-close visual of where I grew up, went to school, and places they probably have heard about in songs of legendary Atlanta artists. I’m a Child of Old Atlanta and it’s important for me to highlight the real culture of Old Atlanta. After they get the hood tour we can venture off into the fun stuff: Ponce City Market, Stoddard’s Gun Range, Piedmont Park, Falcons Game, Braves Game, Iwi Fresh Garden Day Spa, Sweetwater Creek, Trap Music Museum, High Museum of Art, Jackson Street Bridge for Photos, Atlantic Station, maybe a club/lounge such as Suite Lounge, and the strip of restaurants on Main Street in College Park

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I don’t care how cliché, first and foremost my parents- Alvin and Angel. Without them there would be no me, and without them pushing me throughout life and staying on my butt to keep me on the right path, I would not be where I am today. Then there are those educators that I had at Booker T. Washington High School. More specifically, Mrs. Juanita Suttle and Mr. Charles Allen who were both major influences for students in the STAR Academy magnet program. They both ensured that we lived up to our full potential in school and as we prepared for our lives beyond high school. Because of them I received many college acceptances, scholarships, and other opportunities. I have kept in touch with them over these 15+ years because of their influences which have always stuck with me. Moreover, their influences along with others played a BIG part in my desire to start Project SWATS.

Website: www.projectswats.com
Instagram: @itschantrice, @projectswats, @theurbansuccess
Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/chantricecopeland/
Twitter: @itschantrice, @projectswats, @theurbansuccess
Facebook: www.facebook.com/projectswats
Other: Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/projectswats/ E-mail: chantrice@projectswats.com