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Old 01-05-2012, 01:04 AM
 
Location: Wyoming, MI
47 posts, read 87,412 times
Reputation: 18

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I don't have a problem with Helenstreet's posts. If I lived in the area and had that bad of an experience, I would probably have a desire to warn someone who is moving into the area even if it is not strictly on topic.

I am of Asian ethnicity myself, and I happen to like Grand Rapids and can only recall a couple of "incidents" in the time I have lived in the area (14 years) that might be attributed to some racism/prejudice. I have not had any problems related to religion.

The info about the owners of Tokyo Grill and Seoul Garden are interesting, but the fact that the chefs/owners might be from a different country than the food that they are cooking does not mean the restaurant should be dismissed. I didn't express my opinion much before, but I do happen to agree that Seoul Garden was disappointing and I stopped going there after giving them a couple of chances. But the sushi at Tokyo Grill I find to be pretty good. I don't think they are as creative with their sushi compared to what I have had in other cities like Ann Arbor, Boston, and LA, but they do a good job in my opinion.

Wei Wei Garden I find to be worse compared to non-Westernized Chinese restaurants in other cities like AA (Great Lakes Seafood), Boston, Toronto and LA. But since they are the only choice in the area, I will eat there on occasion.

Regarding Thai, the only place I have found so far that I like is Thai Palace in Holland.
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Old 01-05-2012, 02:58 PM
 
Location: Grand Rapids Metro
8,872 posts, read 17,741,219 times
Reputation: 3833
Rak Thai way up on Northland Drive is reeeaaally good.
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Old 12-14-2017, 09:13 AM
 
1 posts, read 413 times
Reputation: 10
Helen,

I really appreciate your candor. The mid west is largely landlocked and we have a relatively small Asian population. While Grand Rapids is a fairly large city and well connected to the global economy, an Asian person should not expect to find the familiar comforts of a place like Seattle or San Francisco which have much larger Asian populations. Therefore, particular cultural needs are financially sustainable through business value creation/delivery in areas of greater Asian Influence do not exist here in Grand Rapids.

I am about to take a bit of a rabbit trail so unless you are seriously interested in opportunities for Asians in Grand Rapids you might wish to skip the rest of my thoughts.

Helen is correct to suggest that being Asian in Grand Rapids can be a real struggle. I know because I'm married to an Asian woman who happens to be from a prominent and influential family in her native former country. Cherie has nine years of university education, a four year degree in communications arts and a post (4 year) graduate law degree. Cherie immigrated to the USA only after her mother, father and two sisters had (They went to Seattle). Because of a mistake (her sister used the wrong immigration form) on a petition (the youngest sibling) was not able to come to the USA along with her mother, so my wife basically raised her youngest sister (who was about six years old when her mother left the country). The parents flew back and forth to visit their daughters.

Meanwhile as everyone was leaving the country Cherie had quite a career going for her. She had become a Liaison to Congress for the Filipino Coast Guard and she had written/won a Supreme Court Landmark Case. Cherie is trained in American Jurisprudence as well. She reported directly to an Admiral and was chosen to draft government contracts for President Estrada. After coming to Grand Rapids Cherie became a US Citizen and underwent appropriate background checks by Homeland Security so that the US Coast Guard took Cherie (as a volunteer) in their Auxiliary Muskegon Division. So now Cherie uses her skills and experience to serve the USA, her new country.

However, truth be told, the only job Cherie could land in Grand Rapids was as a minimum wage materials processor for Goodwill. She has been passed over for better jobs (ones with higher than minimum wage compensation) within that company three different times. Although she applies All the time for other office jobs, no one else to date has hired her.

We tell our children that no one can take away their educations. I use to believe this and in a sense it is still true but what is more important is how we look. Under the surface Cherie is very much like many of the rest of us in Grand Rapids. She is conservative, Christian (She actually wrote a book titled "No Sheep Left Behind"). Which is part of why Cherie insists on staying here. She loves her church family. Cherie is a very private person who apply s and interviews for jobs based on merit alone. Merit alone seems to be a hard road for an Asian living in Grand Rapids.

My point is that race and demographics do matter and this affects potential opportunities. Looking different, being perceived as different, even when one is actually more similar (at least to other educated persons) than most realize, does make Grand Rapids a place where talented and otherwise qualified Asians encounter difficulty being accepted into dominate circles of influence. Although, I do believe that perseverance eventually will prevail. One notable acceptation might be the medical community based on the fact that there are several Asian Doctors and Nurses working here. Suggesting perhaps less bias than other spaces.

Last edited by Scottbritton; 12-14-2017 at 09:42 AM.. Reason: Typos, grammer etc.
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Old 12-14-2017, 07:08 PM
 
Location: Grand Rapids Metro
8,872 posts, read 17,741,219 times
Reputation: 3833
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scottbritton View Post
Helen,

I really appreciate your candor. The mid west is largely landlocked and we have a relatively small Asian population. While Grand Rapids is a fairly large city and well connected to the global economy, an Asian person should not expect to find the familiar comforts of a place like Seattle or San Francisco which have much larger Asian populations. Therefore, particular cultural needs are financially sustainable through business value creation/delivery in areas of greater Asian Influence do not exist here in Grand Rapids.

I am about to take a bit of a rabbit trail so unless you are seriously interested in opportunities for Asians in Grand Rapids you might wish to skip the rest of my thoughts.

Helen is correct to suggest that being Asian in Grand Rapids can be a real struggle. I know because I'm married to an Asian woman who happens to be from a prominent and influential family in her native former country. Cherie has nine years of university education, a four year degree in communications arts and a post (4 year) graduate law degree. Cherie immigrated to the USA only after her mother, father and two sisters had (They went to Seattle). Because of a mistake (her sister used the wrong immigration form) on a petition (the youngest sibling) was not able to come to the USA along with her mother, so my wife basically raised her youngest sister (who was about six years old when her mother left the country). The parents flew back and forth to visit their daughters.

Meanwhile as everyone was leaving the country Cherie had quite a career going for her. She had become a Liaison to Congress for the Filipino Coast Guard and she had written/won a Supreme Court Landmark Case. Cherie is trained in American Jurisprudence as well. She reported directly to an Admiral and was chosen to draft government contracts for President Estrada. After coming to Grand Rapids Cherie became a US Citizen and underwent appropriate background checks by Homeland Security so that the US Coast Guard took Cherie (as a volunteer) in their Auxiliary Muskegon Division. So now Cherie uses her skills and experience to serve the USA, her new country.

However, truth be told, the only job Cherie could land in Grand Rapids was as a minimum wage materials processor for Goodwill. She has been passed over for better jobs (ones with higher than minimum wage compensation) within that company three different times. Although she applies All the time for other office jobs, no one else to date has hired her.

We tell our children that no one can take away their educations. I use to believe this and in a sense it is still true but what is more important is how we look. Under the surface Cherie is very much like many of the rest of us in Grand Rapids. She is conservative, Christian (She actually wrote a book titled "No Sheep Left Behind"). Which is part of why Cherie insists on staying here. She loves her church family. Cherie is a very private person who apply s and interviews for jobs based on merit alone. Merit alone seems to be a hard road for an Asian living in Grand Rapids.

My point is that race and demographics do matter and this affects potential opportunities. Looking different, being perceived as different, even when one is actually more similar (at least to other educated persons) than most realize, does make Grand Rapids a place where talented and otherwise qualified Asians encounter difficulty being accepted into dominate circles of influence. Although, I do believe that perseverance eventually will prevail. One notable acceptation might be the medical community based on the fact that there are several Asian Doctors and Nurses working here. Suggesting perhaps less bias than other spaces.
I think she needs to apply outside of Goodwill. And you really don't get a job in "dominant" circles of influence by applying for positions through HR departments. She needs to get out and network more.

There is no racism or cultural bias at work, it's just the way it goes in trying to get a higher placed career, unless you have a specific degreed skill.

What exactly is she looking for? What kind of position? Asians are in high demand at some of the multi-national companies like Amway...
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Old 12-18-2017, 04:05 AM
 
1,851 posts, read 2,293,137 times
Reputation: 1864
Quote:
Originally Posted by magellan View Post
I think she needs to apply outside of Goodwill. And you really don't get a job in "dominant" circles of influence by applying for positions through HR departments. She needs to get out and network more.

There is no racism or cultural bias at work, it's just the way it goes in trying to get a higher placed career, unless you have a specific degreed skill.

What exactly is she looking for? What kind of position? Asians are in high demand at some of the multi-national companies like Amway...
How can you be so sure that NO racism or cultural bias is at work?
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Old 12-18-2017, 06:24 AM
 
4,153 posts, read 3,823,943 times
Reputation: 6834
Quote:
Originally Posted by usroute10 View Post
How can you be so sure that NO racism or cultural bias is at work?
You can't be sure. Not anymore than someone can claim their situation is entirely the result of it.
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