KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -- Almost a thousand graduates from Metropolitan Community College filled Municipal Auditorium on Thursday night.
Some are moving on to bachelor’s degrees. Others are advancing careers that are already underway.
Cody Cook said he is looking to get a bachelor’s in business.
Christina Rowles is a physical therapist assistant.
Elyn Benjamin likes cyber security.
Amanda Bott currently works in banking.
However, there’s something you might think they would want to hide from their future boss: their tattoos.
Bott and Rowles each have one. Cook has a bunch.
In fact, only one of four of the people we interviewed didn’t have a tattoo.
“First, my mom would kill me,” Benjamin said, explaining that her mother is from Tanzania and that she thinks that might play a role.
“I have covered it in on certain interviews before with makeup,” Rowles said.
“I’m very proud of my tattoos, so I don’t know if I could work somewhere that’s not on board,” Cook said.
“I cover up some of them,” Bott said, “but I have one on my shoulder that I show and there hasn’t been any issue with it.”
We wanted to find out if body art would hurt job prospects in this day and age. Academic studies, as recent as 2018 have conflicting answers. So, we asked a local job recruiter.
“They’re going to be more accepting of a tattoo than a bad attitude,” said Tiffany Riggs.
Riggs is the recruiting manager at Chief of Staff, which has been around for eight years.
Riggs said it’s kind of like a dress code. For example, at the graduation, no sneakers were allowed.
When it comes to tattoos, she said it’s less about what job than who is hiring.
“It doesn’t really matter the level or the type of role that you’re in,” Riggs said. “The company culture really determines whether they are open to that or not.”
Bott’s aunt, Cathi Bott-Christina, is also an HR director at a security system’s company and put it more bluntly.
“If we didn’t hire people with tattoos, we wouldn’t have anybody working for us,” she said.
Still, Riggs says to cover up until you can scope out what’s accepted.