By: Darien Harris
Never Judge a Book By its Cover
Just because someone is covered in tattoos, should that affect their ability to land a job in corporate America?
Today, one in five Americans have a tattoo of some sort, and just like everyone else are looking for work each day at top businesses. It is possible however, that the bias against tattoos is still present in a lot of bosses minds, which may or may not affect whether or not someone gets hired.
Curtis Connell, artist at the Gallery of Fine Art and Tattoo Studio in Lansing Township has strong feelings about stereotypes given to those with tattoos.
“Tattooing is art, just like works done by Picasso, Michelangelo and Da Vinci, and should get the same respect,” said Connell.
“If people would take the time to actually ask about someones tattoos; ask why they got them and what they mean in a respectful manor, I think they would learn a lot,” said Connell.
“Obviously if it were up to me, I would hire anyone tattoos or not. It should not be about what is on the outside, but rather whether or not they can get the job done,” said Connell.
Fiona Grant, Director of Human Resources at Accenture also advises people on how to interview for potential jobs.
“Generally speaking, you will be wearing a suit anyway, so assuming that long sleeves will cover the tattooed areas then clearly there is no issue,” said Grant.
“If the tattoo is say on your hand just go ahead and be yourself and be as professional as you can in your other dress, and look the part,” said Grant.
“As long as you’re not looking scraggly it would be like if a guy has a pony tail, but what matters is that you show that you’ve got professional presence…say if the tattoo has particular meaning it can be referenced if you think it will be an issue,” said Grant.
When asked if she had ever heard of a case where someone having tattoos affected their ability to land a job, Grant said “No”.
“I know of women and men that have got tattoos where they are visible and its fine because they have competence and work ethic in their field,” said Grant.
Nat Finkelstein of the Finkelstein Law Firm said that he has no rule when it comes to his employees having tattoos.
“I generally don’t like tattoos, I don’t really go looking for them, but I have hired people with tattoos,” said Finkelstein.
“I think someone in a high position (with tattoos) would be frowned upon and it can have a negative impact…personally I do not judge but others may, and sometime there may be a time that this changes, but for now there may be a negative impact,” said Finkelstein.
“It’s possible that people won’t care but you never know,” said Finkelstein.
Laura Bennett, who hires for the World Wildlife Federation also has no rule, but says that some managers have their own preferences.
“I don’t see them very often in the corporate world. More of the younger people are getting them, so we will see them more. Appearance is key but it does not affect one’s ability to do one’s job,” said Bennett.
“Once you’ve got the job you no longer need to impress people so you can let yourself go a little more,” said Bennett.
Charlie Herbert, owner of Auto Body Dimensions body shop, works in a field where tattoos are more common.
“I prefer not to see them, but in this profession a lot of people have them,” said Herbert.
“I more so would not want people working in the offices to have them as opposed to out in the shop,” said Herbert.
“I have not necessarily not hired someone because they have tattoos, but if two people were up for a job, and had equal credentials but one had tattoos and one did not, I would lean towards hiring the one without tattoos,” said Herbert.
The Lansing Township Planning Commission put in a request to rezone N. Grace St before the Board of Trustees last night.
The request was to rezone the properties from 304 to 614 N Grace St, which covers two blocks from commercially zoned to residential, according to Senior Planner Matt Brinkley.
The purpose of the rezoning is to undo the original commercial zoning from back in 1967.
“They were zoned commercially with the intention of creating a buffer between the industrial land uses to the east around the General Motors plants and the residential neighborhood of which these homes are apart,” said Brinkley.
Brinkley said that the rezoning has been a goal since the GM plants shut down meaning there is no longer a need for a buffer zone. If the request does pass it will be a great benefit to the homeowners and landlords in that area.
“It allows the properties to be expanded. It allows the properties to be rebuilt if they are substantially destroyed by some catastrophic event and it allows the properties to be sold because it removes an obstacle to financing,” said Brinkley.
The rezoning will also allow the current property owners to refinance which could save them tens of thousands of dollars over the course of their mortgage, Brinkley said.
He said this project also would be a benefit to surrounding properties and homeowners in the area.
“To the community at large it better protects the residential character of that neighborhood, which means the surrounding properties and homeowners are protected from encroachment by commercial properties which might diminish their property values,” Brinkley said.
The next step is for the planning commission to set a public hearing to make a recommendation to be heard by the board of trustees. The board will then make their final decision and the planning commission hopes to have the project finalized in early January.
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Earned never given
Every so often, there are student-athletes who come through a program and although not expected to make an impact, become key pieces to a teams success.
Kyler Elsworth is that type of player for the Michigan State Spartans football team.
Elsworth, now in his senior season, has made crucial plays during his tenure here on both defense and special teams. He has key sacks, tackles for loss, and punt blocks that big time players make. But it has to be mentioned; Elsworth was once a walk-on.
Elsworth, who was featured in last weeks media guide, walked on to the team in the summer of 2009.
“Everyone asks why I chose football over wrestling,” said Elsworth, who was a high school All-American wrestler, sporting several D1 scholarship offers to wrestle including one to Michigan State.
“I know it sounds crazy passing on a free education, but football was where my real passion lied,” said Elsworth.
At 195 pounds entering into Michigan State, Elsworth was asked to play fullback, a position usually warranted for heavier players.
“I knew I was too small coming in and didn’t really know if I could make it here (Michigan State), especially since I didn’t have a scholarship and was often going to be overlooked i felt,” said Elsworth.
“My true freshman year I didn’t even get reps on the scout team,” said Elsworth.
“I wanted to make a difference, but I didn’t really know how to,” said Elsworth.
The Turning Point
After Elsworth’s red shirting season in his first year, he was moved to linebacker in the spring.
“I immediately felt more at home at linebacker,” said Elsworth.
“I finally got in the weight room a lot and was beginning to put on weight. Just lifting with the guys and getting stronger made me feel like I belonged and actually could play at this level,” said Elsworth.
With the added weight, Elsworth began making impactful plays on special teams and went into his redshirt freshman year as a special teams starter ready to make a difference.
“My linebacker coach, Coach Tressel, who is also the special teams coach always stressed special teams as very important, so I took it as such,” said Elsworth.
According to the strength coaches at Michigan State, Elsworth has always been one of the hardest workers in the weight room. Over the five years that he has been here, Elsworth has gained over 30 pounds and transformed himself into a menacing force on the field.
During Elsworth’s redshirt sophomore season, Elsworth had a key punt block against Wisconsin. During his redshirt junior season, he made key tackles and sacks against Wisconsin and Iowa.
“Once I gained the weight, I knew I could play,” said Elsworth. “I just had to prove it to the coaches and myself that I could make these plays on Saturdays.
A True Catalyst
Elsworth earned a scholarship prior to his redshirt sophomore season; a feat only few walk ons obtain.
“It was really exciting and emotional for me to to be told by Coach Dantonio that I had earned a full ride for the rest of my tenure here,” said Elsworth.
“It was then that I really knew choosing to play football, and trusting my heart was the right thing to do,” said Elsworth.
“Kyler definitely deserves that scholarship,” said Elsworth’s linebacker mate Taiwan Jones.
“I see Kyler as a leader on this team and someone I really look up too,” said Jones.
Everything about Elsworth breathes hard work and dedication. In his tenure at Michigan State Elsworth has notched 59 tackles, six tackles for loss, and three sacks in 40 career games.
Elsworth is currently in his senior season and has helped the Spartans to a 9-1 start to the season and first place ranking in the Legends Division.
By: Darien Harris
Lansing Township— Slater Park has been a staple for the Groesbeck and Lansing Township community for years, and this past weekend it received a new park bench. The bench donated by Pete Holoway, was acquired through a place-making grant through the Greater Lansing Association of Realtors, according to Senior Planner Matt Brinkley. “Slater Park is already a great area, but we would like to make it better,” Holoway said. Throughout the years, Slater Park has been important to the community of Lansing Township and was very special to Holoway personally, he said. “It really impacted me as a young boy. It’s where I hung out, played baseball and in the winter the fire department would flood it and turn it into an ice rink,” Holoway said. Holoway said that he wants the park to become a focal point of the community again and even something as simple as a park bench is a first step in making the park somewhere where kids and families can relax. “There is a garden area, and if you were growing corn and wanted a place to husk it, there was no place to sit,” Holoway said. According to Brinkley the park bench is merely the first step the Township has for renovating and updating their park areas. “The Township is in the process of updating its master plan, including parks and recreation facilities, and Slater Park will feature prominently in those plans. We think that it can become something really unique and provide the neighborhood with even more amenities than it does now,” Brinkley said. Holoway agrees with Brinkley and hopes that he can do more to improve his childhood home. “This is just a start for me,” Holoway said. The bench was dedicated to Slater Park on Saturday Nov. 2 at a ceremony for the National Association of Realtors.
By Nick Somoski
According to officials from DTN Management, the main development company and financer involved with the project, the expansion of the Eastwood site on Lake Lansing Road and U.S. 127 will include a new apartment complex and two new hotels.
The Vista luxury apartments and Hyatt Place Hotel will be a part of “The Heights at Eastwood,” a development site that also includes office and retail space. A second hotel – Fairfield Inn & Suites – will be built on the east side of Preyde Avenue.
By Nick Somoski
LANSING TOWNSHIP – CATA representatives answered questions and provided more information about the proposed changes to the route 11 service at a public hearing held at the CATA Transportation Center Oct. 3.
CEO and Executive Director Sandy Draggoo said gathering opinions from riders who will be directly impacted by this change is one of the most important aspects of the decision- making process. “We always have a public hearing so people can come and give us their comments on what’s a better way of doing something than what is our proposed change,” she said.
The route currently runs on Waverly and Old Lansing roads and provides service to residents living in Lansing Township’s Colonial Village neighborhood. People who regularly visit the YMCA of Lansing will also be affected.
According to Draggoo, the proposed change will eliminate service to the YMCA along Waverly and Old Lansing roads and move the route to Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard.
By Nick Somoski
LANSING TOWNSHIP – The U.S. federal government officially shut down at 12:01 a.m. ET Tuesday, Oct. 1, and although the effects are minimal in Lansing Township, local residents may want to be informed of what to expect.
This shutdown, the first in 17 years, is the product of a disagreement between Republicans and Democrats over future spending for the new Affordable Care Act, new provisions of which went into effect the same day.