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Alternatives in Higher Education: What to Look For in a Cosmetology School



Higher education in this country has a much broader definition than a Bachelor’s degree at a college or university. It includes college-level institutions like trade, technical, and vocational schools, of which there are many reputable options in the United States.

According to a recent article in The New York Times analyzing new data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 65.9% of people who graduated from high school in 2013 enrolled in college, down from 66.2% the previous year. While there are several socioeconomic explanations, the good news is 74% of graduates from the same year who did not enroll in college were in the workforce. It is becoming increasingly common for high school graduates to opt for alternatives to four year college. Vital and career-boosting alternatives like cosmetology or beauty school are increasingly viable options for individuals who cannot or do not wish to submit themselves to many years of post-graduate debt.

If you’re considering applying to cosmetology school, there are a unique set of expectations, challenges, and programs to absorb.

Hands-on Learning
Whether you’re interested in becoming a full specialist or focusing on a niche technical skill like electrology, you need an interactive education that steps outside the classroom. For example, Hollywood Institute of Beauty Careers, founded in 1974 to provide professional training in Cosmetology Arts and related beauty, health, and wellness career fields, has four campuses in Florida that combine foundational classroom learning with hands-on clinical applications to prepare students for their choice of careers as nail technicians, estheticians, or barbers. Your cosmetology school training should always include clinical hours alongside licensed technicians so you can practice and master the skills you will use every day after entering the field.

Job Placement Rate
The post-graduate job placement rate is an important statistic for any higher education program, but when it comes to technical institutes like cosmetology school, it is arguably more important than ever. If you’re training for a specific career, you should be eligible and sought after for open positions in the industry. Look for a school with a dedicated Career Services Department, who will help you tailor your resume, prepare for interviews, and connect you with competitive and well qualified employers. Again, we use HIBC as a standard bearer given that the majority of their cosmetology programs have favorable placement rates.

The Pivot Point Approach
Many cosmetology schools, like Hollywood Institute of Beauty Careers, intelligently participate in and structure their curriculum on the internationally renowned Pivot Point approach to education. Pivot Point takes what they refer to as A Designer’s Approach™. It is an engaging educational program structured around cultivating salon and spa ready designers and beauty technicians by nurturing each individual’s’ talents, skills, and technical development.

Are you a high school graduate looking for an alternative to a four year college? Do you seek a thriving career in the beauty and wellness industries? Then it’s time to start considering cosmetology school. Across the country passionate students are forming tight-knit learning communities where they can support each other on a journey to acquire the skills necessary to enter a competitive, but growing workforce as a well-qualified, certified professional. Consider some of the outlined resources available at top beauty schools as you begin your search for a different kind of higher education.


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