How to Pick a Cosmetology College near Shelby Alabama
Since you have made a decision to become a cosmetologist and attend a beauty school near Shelby AL, the process starts to search for and enroll in the best school. It’s important that the school you choose not only furnishes the proper training for the specialty you have chosen, but also readies you for passing the licensing examination. When you start your initial search, you might be a little bit unclear about the contrast between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don’t be, because the names are pretty much interchangeable and both refer to the same type of school. We’ll speak a little bit more about that in the following segment. If you plan on commuting to classes you will want to choose a school that is within driving distance of your Shelby residence. Tuition will also be an important factor when assessing prospective schools. Just remember that because a school is the nearest or the least expensive it’s not automatically the ideal choice. There are various other considerations that you should weigh when analyzing schools, such as their reputation and accreditation. We will review what questions you should ask concerning the cosmetology schools you are looking at later within this article. Before we do, let’s talk a little bit about what cosmetology is, and what types of programs are offered.
Cosmetology is a profession that is everything about making the human anatomy look more beautiful through the use of cosmetics. So naturally it makes sense that many cosmetology schools are regarded as beauty schools. Many of us think of makeup when we hear the term cosmetics, but actually a cosmetic can be anything that enhances the look of a person’s skin, hair or nails. If you want to work as a cosmetologist, most states require that you undergo some kind of specialized training and then become licensed. Once licensed, the work environments include not only Shelby AL beauty salons and barber shops, but also such businesses as spas, hotels and resorts. Many cosmetologists, after they have gotten experience and a clientele, establish their own shops or salons. Others will begin seeing customers either in their own homes or will go to the client’s home, or both. Cosmetology college graduates have many titles and work in a wide variety of specializations including:
- Nail Technicians
- Makeup Artists
- Hair Coloring Specialists
- Electrolysis Technicians
As earlier stated, in the majority of states working cosmetologists have to be licensed. In a few states there is an exemption. Only those conducting more skilled services, for instance hairstylists, are required to be licensed. Others working in cosmetology and less skilled, including shampooers, are not required to get licensed in those states.
There are basically two avenues offered to receive cosmetology training and a credential after completion. You can enroll in a certificate (or diploma) course, or you can pursue an Associate’s degree. Certificate programs typically require 12 to 18 months to complete, while an Associate’s degree ordinarily takes about 2 years. If you enroll in a certificate program you will be trained in each of the main areas of cosmetology. Briefer programs are available if you want to specialize in just one area, for example hair coloring. A degree program will also likely incorporate management and marketing training so that graduates are better prepared to manage a salon or other Shelby AL business. More advanced degrees are not prevalent, but Bachelor and Master’s degree programs are available in such areas as salon or spa management. Whatever type of program you choose, it’s important to make sure that it’s recognized by the Alabama Board of Cosmetology. Many states only certify schools that are accredited by certain reputable agencies, for example the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS). We will examine the benefits of accreditation for the school you select in the next segment.
Online Beauty Programs
Online beauty programs are accommodating for Shelby AL students who are employed full time and have family obligations that make it hard to attend a more traditional school. There are many web-based cosmetology school programs offered that can be attended via a desktop computer or laptop at the student’s convenience. More traditional beauty schools are often fast paced because many courses are as brief as 6 or 8 months. This means that a significant amount of time is spent in the classroom. With online programs, you are covering the same amount of material, but you are not devoting many hours outside of your home or commuting to and from classes. However, it’s important that the program you pick can provide internship training in local salons and parlors so that you also get the hands-on training required for a complete education. Without the internship part of the training, it’s difficult to gain the skills necessary to work in any facet of the cosmetology industry. So make sure if you choose to enroll in an online school to verify that internship training is available in your area.
Questions to Ask Cosmetology Training Programs
Following is a list of questions that you need to investigate for any cosmetologist training program you are considering. As we have already covered, the location of the school in relation to your Shelby AL residence, in addition to the cost of tuition, will most likely be your primary qualifiers. Whether you wish to pursue a certificate, diploma or a degree will probably be next on your list. But once you have narrowed your school choices based on those preliminary qualifications, there are additional factors that you need to research and take into consideration before enrolling in a cosmetology school. Following we have put together several of those additional questions that you should ask every school before making a final selection.
Is the Program Accredited? It’s important to make sure that the cosmetology training program you enroll in is accredited. The accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education recognized local or national agency, such as the National Accrediting Commission for Cosmetology Arts & Sciences (NACCAS). Schools accredited by the NACCAS must comply with their high standards guaranteeing a superior curriculum and education. Accreditation may also be essential for acquiring student loans or financial aid, which frequently are not offered in 35143 for non- accredited schools. It’s also a requirement for licensing in some states that the training be accredited. And as a final benefit, numerous Shelby AL businesses will not hire recent graduates of non-accredited schools, or might look more favorably upon individuals with accredited training.
Does the School have an Excellent Reputation? Every cosmetologist institute that you are seriously evaluating should have a good to exceptional reputation within the field. Being accredited is an excellent starting point. Next, ask the schools for references from their network of businesses where they have referred their students. Check that the schools have high job placement rates, indicating that their students are highly regarded. Visit rating services for reviews as well as the school’s accrediting agencies. If you have any contacts with Shelby AL salon owners or managers, or anyone working in the industry, ask them if they are acquainted with the schools you are reviewing. They may even be able to recommend others that you had not thought of. And finally, contact the Alabama school licensing authority to find out if there have been any grievances submitted or if the schools are in full compliance.
What’s the School’s Specialty? Many cosmetology schools offer programs that are comprehensive in nature, concentrating on all facets of cosmetology. Others are more focused, offering training in a particular specialty, such as hairstyling, manicuring or electrolysis. Schools that offer degree programs commonly expand into a management and marketing curriculum. So it’s imperative that you pick a school that specializes in your area of interest. If your intention is to be trained as an esthetician, make certain that the school you enroll in is accredited and well regarded for that program. If your dream is to launch a hair salon in Shelby AL, then you need to enroll in a degree program that will teach you how to be an owner/operator. Selecting a highly rated school with a poor program in the specialty you are pursuing will not deliver the training you require.
Is Plenty of Hands-On Training Provided? Learning and perfecting cosmetology skills and techniques requires plenty of practice on volunteers. Check how much live, hands-on training is provided in the cosmetology lessons you will be attending. A number of schools have salons on site that make it possible for students to practice their developing skills on real people. If a beauty school provides minimal or no scheduled live training, but rather relies mainly on utilizing mannequins, it might not be the most effective option for acquiring your skills. Therefore try to find alternate schools that furnish this kind of training.
Does the School Provide Job Assistance? As soon as a student graduates from a beauty program, it’s essential that she or he receives assistance in finding that first job. Job placement programs are an important part of that process. Schools that furnish aid maintain relationships with Shelby AL employers that are searching for trained graduates available for hiring. Verify that the programs you are contemplating have job placement programs and find out which salons and establishments they refer students to. Also, find out what their job placement rates are. High rates not only affirm that they have broad networks of employers, but that their programs are highly regarded as well.
Is Financial Assistance Offered? Most beauty schools offer financial aid or student loan assistance for their students. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have a financial aid department. Speak with a counselor and identify what student loans or grants you may qualify for. If the school is a member of the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS), it will have scholarships available to students as well. If a school satisfies each of your other qualifications with the exception of expense, do not discard it as an alternative before you determine what financial aid may be available.
Enrolled in Cosmetology School near Shelby AL?
If you have decided to attend Beauty School in the greater Shelby AL area, following is some interesting and perhaps useful information about the location of your new school campus.
Shelby County, Alabama
Shelby County is a county of the U.S. state of Alabama. As of the 2010 census the population was 195,085. The county seat is Columbiana. The county is named in honor of Isaac Shelby, Governor of Kentucky from 1792 to 1796 and again from 1812 to 1816.
Shelby County was established on February 7, 1818, and it was named for the Revolutionary War hero and the first Governor of Kentucky, Isaac Shelby. Beginning in 1820, the first county seat was located at Shelbyville. This settlement, long defunct, was located within the modern city limits of Pelham. The first courthouse was built of logs. The seat was moved to Columbia, now Columbiana, in 1826. Initially housed in an old school building, a new brick courthouse building was completed in 1854. It is now known as the Old Shelby County Courthouse and houses the Shelby County Museum and Archives. The current limestone courthouse was built from 1905–06, at a cost of $300,000.
Shelby County was the home of an early inland waterway, the Coosa River, and it was also the location of a very early east-west railroad in Alabama that connected Atlanta, Georgia, with locations to its west. Shelby County was also crossed by an early north-south railroad, the Louisville and Nashville Railroad, that connected Louisville, Nashville, Decatur, Birmingham, and Montgomery.
Choose the Right Beauty School near Shelby AL
Choosing and enrolling in the ideal beauty college is essential to obtain the necessary training to become a licensed cosmetology practitioner. Be sure to ask all the questions that you require so as to feel confident about your decision. Make sure to organize all of the responses you receive from the beauty school admissions departments, prioritize what matters the most to you, and then employ that information to compare schools. A good beginning in your due diligence process is to make sure that the academy and program you decide on are accredited and have impressive reputations within the profession. If you start with that base, and answer the additional questions presented in this post, you will be able to narrow down your list of schools so that you can make the ideal selection. And when you graduate and pass your licensing test, you will be self-assured that you are ready to launch your new career as a professional cosmetologist in Shelby AL.
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