Esthetician Cosmetology Program
How to Find the Best One Near Albertville Alabama
Since you have made a decision to enter the field of cosmetology and enroll in an esthetician school near Albertville AL, the task begins to find and enroll in the ideal program. Since estheticians are required to be licensed in all states, the school you select should prep you to pass the licensing exam as well as provide the necessary training for your specialty. When you begin your preliminary search, you might be rather puzzled about the difference between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don't be, because the names are basically interchangeable and both refer to the same kind of school. You will want to find a school that is within reasonable commuting distance of your home unless you plan to relocate for training. Tuition will also be an important factor when evaluating prospective schools. But keep in mind that just because a school is the nearest or the lowest cost it's not always the best choice. Reputation and accreditation, for example are among the other qualifications that you need to evaluate when weighing your school options. We will review what questions you should ask regarding the cosmetology schools you are considering later within this article. Before we do, let's talk a little bit about what kinds of training programs are offered.
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There are basically two options available to receive esthetician training and a credential upon completion. You can enroll in a certificate (or diploma) course, or you can work toward an Associate's degree. Certificate programs typically require 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 all of the major areas of cosmetology. Briefer programs are offered if you want to specialize in just one area, for instance esthetics. A degree program will also likely feature management and marketing training so that graduates are better prepared to run a parlor or other Albertville AL business. More advanced degrees are not prevalent, but Bachelor and Master's degree programs are available in such specialties as salon or spa management. Whatever type of program you choose, it's imperative to make sure that it's approved by the Alabama Board of Cosmetology. A number of states only recognize schools that are accredited by certain reputable agencies, for example the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS). We will discuss the benefits of accreditation for the school you choose in the upcoming section.
Esthetics Online Classes
Online esthetician programs are accommodating for Albertville AL students who are employed full-time and have family commitments that make it hard to enroll in a more traditional school. There are a large number of web-based beauty school programs available that can be accessed via a home computer or laptop at the student's convenience. More conventional beauty schools are often fast paced because many courses are as short as six or eight months. This means that a significant amount of time is spent in the classroom. With online courses, you are dealing with the same amount of material, but you're not spending many hours away from your home or driving back and forth from classes. However, it's imperative that the program you pick can provide internship training in nearby salons and parlors to ensure that you also get the hands-on training needed for a comprehensive education. Without the internship part of the training, it's difficult to obtain the skills needed to work in any facet of the cosmetology field. So don't forget if you choose to enroll in an online program to confirm that internship training is provided in your area.
What to Ask Esthetician Training Programs
Below is a series of questions that you should investigate for any esthetician training school you are considering. As we have already covered, the location of the school relative to your Albertville home, as well as the cost of tuition, will most likely be your initial qualifiers. Whether you want to pursue a certificate, diploma or a degree will undoubtedly 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 consider before enrolling in a cosmetology program. Below we have put together some of those supplemental questions that you need to ask each school before making a final decision.
Is the Esthetician Program Accredited? It's essential to make certain that the esthetician college you enroll in is accredited. The accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education certified local or national agency, such as the National Accrediting Commission for Cosmetology Arts & Sciences (NACCAS). Programs accredited by the NACCAS must meet their high standards guaranteeing a quality curriculum and education. Accreditation can also be necessary for obtaining student loans or financial aid, which typically are not offered for non- accredited schools. It's also a prerequisite for licensing in some states that the training be accredited. And as a final benefit, many Albertville AL employers will not hire recent graduates of non-accredited schools, or might look more positively upon individuals with accredited training.
Does the School have an Excellent Reputation? Each esthetician institute that you are seriously considering should have a good to outstanding reputation within the industry. Being accredited is an excellent beginning. Next, ask the schools for testimonials 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 regarded. Visit rating companies for reviews together with the school's accrediting organizations. If you have any relationships with Albertville AL salon owners or managers, or someone working in the field, ask them if they are acquainted with the schools you are looking at. They might even be able to propose others that you had not considered. And finally, check with the Alabama school licensing authority to find out if there have been any grievances filed or if the schools are in complete compliance.
What’s the School’s Focus? Some esthetician schools offer programs that are broad in nature, concentrating on all areas of cosmetology. Others are more focused, offering training in a particular specialty, such as hairstyling, manicuring or electrolysis. Schools that offer degree programs frequently broaden into a management and marketing curriculum. So it's imperative that you enroll in a school that focuses on your area of interest. If your ambition is to be trained as an esthetician, make sure that the school you enroll in is accredited and well regarded for that program. If your dream is to open a Albertville AL beauty salon, then you want to enroll in a degree program that will instruct you how to be an owner/operator. Choosing a highly regarded school with a weak program in the specialty you are seeking will not provide the training you need.
Is Any Live Training Provided? Learning and refining esthetician skills and techniques involves plenty of practice on people. Find out how much live, hands-on training is provided in the beauty courses you will be attending. Some schools have salons on site that allow students to practice their growing skills on volunteers. If a beauty school offers limited or no scheduled live training, but instead relies mainly on the use of mannequins, it may not be the best alternative for acquiring your skills. So look for other schools that furnish this type of training.
Does the School Provide Job Assistance? Once a student graduates from an esthetician program, it's imperative that he or she receives assistance in securing that initial job. Job placement programs are an integral part of that process. Schools that provide assistance develop relationships with Albertville AL businesses that are seeking skilled graduates available for hiring. Check that the programs you are contemplating have job placement programs and ask which salons and businesses they refer students to. In addition, find out what their job placement rates are. High rates not only affirm that they have extensive networks of employers, but that their programs are highly regarded as well.
Is Financial Aid Offered? Most esthetician schools provide financial aid or student loan assistance for their students. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have a financial aid department. Consult 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 offered to students also. If a school fulfills each of your other qualifications with the exception of cost, do not drop it as an option before you determine what financial help may be offered.
Choose the Right Albertville Esthetician Program
Picking and enrolling in the right esthetician college near Albertville AL is imperative to obtain the proper training to become a licensed cosmetology specialist. Be sure to ask all the questions that you need to in order to feel certain about your decision. Don't forget to compile all of the information you get from the cosmetology school admissions departments, focus on what matters the most to you, and then employ that information to contrast schools. A sensible start in your due diligence procedure is to make sure that the school and program you pick are accredited and have outstanding reputations within the field. 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 choice. And when you graduate and pass your licensing test, you will be confident that you are prepared to launch your career as a professional esthetician.