How to Find the Right Cosmetologist School near Fort Collins Colorado
Since you have decided to become a cosmetologist and attend a beauty school near Fort Collins CO, the task starts to search for and enroll in the right school. It’s important that the school you choose not only provides the necessary instruction for the specialty you have chosen, but also prepares you for passing the licensing examination. When you start your preliminary search, you may be rather puzzled about the contrast between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don’t be, because the titles are essentially interchangeable and both relate to the same type of school. We’ll talk a little bit further concerning that in the upcoming section. If you plan on commuting to classes you will want to locate a school that is within driving distance of your Fort Collins home. Tuition will also be an important aspect when evaluating possible schools. Just keep in mind that because a school is the nearest or the cheapest it’s not always the best choice. There are many other qualifications that you should weigh when comparing schools, for instance their reputation and accreditation. We will examine what questions you should ask regarding the cosmetology schools you are thinking about later in this article. Before we do, let’s talk a little bit about what cosmetology is, and what kinds of courses are available.
What is Cosmetology
Cosmetology is a profession that is all about making the human anatomy look more beautiful with the application of cosmetics. So naturally it makes sense that many cosmetology schools are regarded as beauty schools. Most of us think of makeup when we hear the word cosmetics, but actually a cosmetic may be anything that enhances the look of a person’s skin, hair or nails. In order to work as a cosmetologist, almost all states require that you undergo some kind of specialized training and then become licensed. Once you are licensed, the work environments include not only Fort Collins CO beauty salons and barber shops, but also such businesses as spas, hotels and resorts. Many cosmetologists, after they have gained experience and a customer base, open their own shops or salons. Others will begin servicing customers either in their own homes or will travel to the client’s house, or both. Cosmetology college graduates are known by many titles and are employed in a wide variety of specializations including:
- Nail Technicians
- Makeup Artists
- Hair Coloring Specialists
- Electrolysis Technicians
As earlier stated, in most states practicing cosmetologists must be licensed. In some states there is an exemption. Only those offering more skilled services, for instance hairstylists, are required to be licensed. Other people working in cosmetology and less skilled, such as shampooers, are not required to get licensed in those states.
Cosmetology Degrees and Certificates
There are basically two pathways offered to receive cosmetology training and a credential after completion. You can enroll in a certificate (or diploma) program, or you can work toward an Associate’s degree. Certificate programs usually take 12 to 18 months to finish, while an Associate’s degree commonly takes about 2 years. If you enroll in a certificate program you will be instructed in each of the main areas of cosmetology. Shorter programs are offered if you wish to concentrate on just one area, for instance hair coloring. A degree program will also likely incorporate management and marketing training so that graduates are better prepared to operate a parlor or other Fort Collins CO business. More advanced degrees are not common, but Bachelor and Master’s degree programs are offered in such areas as salon or spa management. Whatever type of training program you decide on, it’s essential to make certain that it’s certified by the Colorado Board of Cosmetology. Many states only certify schools that are accredited by certain reputable organizations, for example the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS). We will cover the benefits of accreditation for the school you select in the following segment.
Online Cosmetologist Programs
Online cosmetology programs are advantageous for Fort Collins CO students who are working full-time and have family commitments that make it challenging to enroll in a more traditional school. There are a large number of online cosmetology school programs offered that can be attended via a home computer or laptop at the student’s convenience. More traditional cosmetology programs are frequently fast paced due to the fact that many programs are as short as 6 or 8 months. This means that a significant amount of time is spent in the classroom. With internet courses, you are covering the same amount of material, but you’re not spending numerous hours outside of your home or commuting to and from classes. However, it’s vital that the school you choose can provide internship training in nearby salons and parlors to ensure that you also get the hands-on training required for a complete education. Without the internship portion of the training, it’s difficult to obtain the skills required to work in any facet of the cosmetology industry. So make sure if you decide to enroll in an online school to verify that internship training is available in your area.
What to Ask Cosmetologist Degree Programs
Below is a series of questions that you need to look into for any cosmetologist training program you are considering. As we have already discussed, the location of the school relative to your Fort Collins CO home, as well as the price of tuition, will most likely be your primary qualifiers. Whether you would like to pursue a certificate, diploma or a degree will probably be next on your list. But once you have reduced your school options based on those preliminary qualifications, there are even more factors that you should research and take into consideration before enrolling in a cosmetology school. Below we have put together several of those additional questions that you need to ask every school before making a final decision.
Is the School Accredited? It’s important to make sure that the cosmetology school you pick is accredited. The accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education certified local or national organization, such as the National Accrediting Commission for Cosmetology Arts & Sciences (NACCAS). Schools accredited by the NACCAS must meet their high standards assuring a quality curriculum and education. Accreditation can also be necessary for obtaining student loans or financial aid, which typically are not available in 80521 for non- accredited schools. It’s also a criteria for licensing in some states that the training be accredited. And as a concluding benefit, numerous Fort Collins CO businesses will not hire recent graduates of non-accredited schools, or might look more positively upon individuals with accredited training.
Does the School have a Great Reputation? Every cosmetologist college that you are seriously considering should have a good to exceptional reputation within the profession. Being accredited is an excellent beginning. 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, showing that their students are highly sought after. Check rating services for reviews together with the school’s accrediting organizations. If you have any connections with Fort Collins CO salon owners or managers, or anyone working in the field, ask them if they are familiar with the schools you are looking at. They might even be able to propose others that you had not considered. And finally, contact the Colorado school licensing authority to find out if there have been any grievances filed or if the schools are in full compliance.
What’s the School’s Specialty? Some cosmetology schools offer programs that are comprehensive in nature, focusing on all areas of cosmetology. Others are more focused, providing training in a particular specialty, such as hairstyling, manicuring or electrolysis. Schools that offer degree programs often expand into a management and marketing curriculum. So it’s imperative that you decide on a school that focuses on your area of interest. If your ambition is to be trained as an esthetician, make certain that the school you enroll in is accredited and respected for that program. If your dream is to start a hair salon in Fort Collins CO, then you need to enroll in a degree program that will teach you how to be an owner/operator. Picking a highly regarded school with a weak program in the specialty you are seeking will not provide the training you need.
Is Any Hands-On Training Provided? Practicing and mastering cosmetology techniques and abilities demands plenty of practice on people. Find out how much live, hands-on training is provided in the cosmetology classes you will be attending. A number of schools have salons on campus that enable students to practice their growing skills on real people. If a beauty academy provides limited or no scheduled live training, but instead relies predominantly on utilizing mannequins, it might not be the most effective alternative for acquiring your skills. So try to find other schools that furnish this type of training.
Does the School Provide Job Assistance? When a student graduates from a beauty academy, it’s imperative that she or he receives help in securing that initial job. Job placement programs are an integral part of that process. Schools that provide assistance maintain relationships with Fort Collins CO businesses that are seeking trained graduates available for hiring. Confirm that the schools you are considering have job placement programs and find out which salons and establishments they refer students to. Additionally, ask what their job placement rates are. Higher rates not only confirm that they have extensive networks of employers, but that their programs are highly regarded as well.
Is Financial Aid Available? Almost all cosmetology schools offer financial aid or student loan assistance for their students. Ask if the schools you are looking at have a financial aid office. Speak with a counselor and identify what student loans or grants you may get approved for. If the school belongs to the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS), it will have scholarships available to students as well. If a school fulfills all of your other qualifications with the exception of cost, do not discard it as an option until you determine what financial aid may be offered.
Enrolled in Cosmetology School near Fort Collins CO?
If you have decided to attend Beauty School in the greater Fort Collins CO area, following is some interesting and perhaps useful information about the location of your new school campus.
Fort Collins, Colorado
Fort Collins is the Home Rule Municipality that is the county seat and the most populous municipality of Larimer County, Colorado, United States. Situated on the Cache La Poudre River along the Colorado Front Range, Fort Collins is located 56 mi (90 km) north of the Colorado State Capitol in Denver. With a 2016 estimated population of 161,000, it is the fourth most populous city in Colorado after Denver, Colorado Springs, and Aurora. Fort Collins is a midsize college city, home to Colorado State University.
Fort Collins was founded as a military outpost of the United States Army in 1864. It succeeded a previous encampment, known as Camp Collins, on the Cache La Poudre River, near what is known today as Laporte. Camp Collins was erected during the Indian wars of the mid-1860s to protect the Overland mail route that had been recently relocated through the region. Travelers crossing the county on the Overland Trail would camp there, but a flood destroyed the camp in June 1864. Afterward, the commander of the fort wrote to the commandant of Fort Laramie in southeast Wyoming, Colonel William O. Collins, suggesting that a site several miles farther down the river would make a good location for the fort. The post was manned originally by two companies of the 11th Ohio Volunteer Cavalry and never had walls.
Settlers began arriving in the vicinity of the fort nearly immediately. The fort was decommissioned in 1867. The original fort site is now adjacent to the present historic "Old Town" portion of the city. The first school and church opened in 1866, and the town was platted in 1867. The civilian population of Fort Collins, led by local businessman Joseph Mason, led an effort to relocate the county seat to Fort Collins from LaPorte, and they were successful in 1868.
Choose the Right Beauty Training Program near Fort Collins CO
Picking and enrolling in the ideal cosmetologist school is essential to obtain the necessary training to become a licensed cosmetology professional. Be sure to ask all the questions that you require in order to feel positive about your decision. Make sure to compile all of the responses you receive from the cosmetology school admissions departments, focus on what matters the most to you, and then utilize that information to compare schools. A reasonable start in your due diligence process is to make sure that the institution and program you select are accredited and have excellent reputations within the profession. If you begin with that base, and answer the additional questions presented in this post, you will be able to reduce your list of schools so that you can make the right selection. And when you graduate and pass your licensing examination, you will be self-assured that you are prepared to launch your career as a professional cosmetologist in Fort Collins CO.
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