Grace Ames aims to change world - The Lookout - LCC's Independent Student Newspaper Since 1959
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Grace Ames aims to change world

Grace Ames

Grace Ames is a marketing and business major at Lansing Community College.  Photo by Mallory Stiles

Mallory Stiles

By Mallory Stiles
Associate Editor

Some people are naturally gifted at multi-tasking, some people not so much. For LCC student Grace Ames, 19, nothing comes more easily.

Ames resets the standard by working three jobs and taking four classes at LCC. She is a marketing and business major, but is also a hair stylist at a salon in Stockbridge, a seasonal park ranger and a small business owner.

She is currently enrolled in Retailing, Marketing and Professional Image, Business Law and Intro to Statistics for a total of 13 credits. She said her education remains her top priority, but her passion is building her brand.

“My style, at least how I describe it, is handmade hippie jewelry,” Ames said. “I focus a lot on organic crystals, fossils, rocks … really anything that resembles the true meaning of being a hippie. I grew up with two hippie parents and grandparents. A lot of it resonated with me as a kid and so as I grew up, I wanted to trap that essence into jewelry.”

Her website is www.shopwinsunco.com, which showcases her inventory and also lists all of her social media contact information. It’s there for anyone in the market for hand-crafted, wearable works of art, or even for someone who just wants to dive a little deeper into hippie culture.

Ames definitely has a hippish, loving nature about her, which she said allows her to thrive both as a hair stylist and park ranger, where she is constantly working with different types of people.

It is hard to believe that she can keep a smile with such a demanding schedule but she does. Her mother, Becky Ames, was able to confirm that this has been her style since day one.

“She has always had a pretty clear vision of what she wanted to do with her life,” Becky said. “When she was in the fourth grade, she told me she was going to be an entrepreneur, which I thought was amazing. Her dad and I are so proud of her. She stands out most for her ability to dream and to figure out how to make those dreams come true for herself.”

Ames definitely has a long resume of dreams and accomplishments, but an item not yet discussed is her dream to save the world … or at least the ozone layer.

“I am a climate change activist,” Ames said. “I went to a very conservative, Republican high school in a very small farming community. And as someone who is not like that, I was definitely bullied for not thinking like everyone else.”

“A lot of it started when I was pushed into my outsider phase. Normally when you’re an outcast, people get kind of slumped and don’t want to do anything. But I used it as an opportunity to give myself a platform, because if I was the only one to think like that, that meant all eyes would be on me. So I decided to give them a show.”

As a young girl and a Girl Scout, she hung posters and was a part of many recycling drives. As an adult, she continues to spread the word about reusing, reducing, recycling and zero-waste stores every chance she gets.

Her confidence continues to break barriers as she works tirelessly to change her corner of the world, describing her down time as rare but her hobbies as many.

“I like to spend quality time with people, like my best friend or my boyfriend,” Ames said. “Even just by myself, I just love relaxing at home.

“I also really like being outside. I love kayaking and hiking and just enjoying the sunshine. I also love records. I spend a lot of time at record stores browsing through collections, but other than that I am very much a home body.”

She said it was her dad who got her into records growing up, but her love for music has developed into a coping mechanism and grew her tastes far beyond the average 19-year-old. She listens to alternative, indie, punk, folk and even a bit of rap.

“Music helps me,” she said. “I almost always have music going, no matter what. As soon as I woke up this morning, I connected my phone to my speaker and started playing music. In every car ride I am listening to something, and I always have headphones for when I am not at home.”

Ames said she has a coffee corner and a coffee cup from her mother that was hand-crafted – her favorite – with a mushroom on it to keep her inspired each and every morning.

If she could pick anyone to share a conversation with, she said she would pick Michelle Obama, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez or Ruth Bader Ginsburg from beyond the grave, because her love for strong women who change things never ceases.

Her future consists of her many tattoo goals, on top of the three she already has, continuing to run a thriving business and making the difference we all can’t seem to shut up about … while getting through class after class.

“I am doing this for my future family,” Ames said. “I want kids when I am older, and if they choose to have kids, I want my children and grandchildren to have a better place to live.”

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