How to Enroll In the Right Esthetician School Near Montgomery Alabama
Since you have decided to enter the field of cosmetology and enroll in an esthetician school near Montgomery AL, the task starts to search for and enroll in the right program. It's essential that the school you choose not only provides the appropriate training for the specialty you have selected, but also preps you for passing the licensing examination. When you start your preliminary search, you may be somewhat confused about the difference between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don't be, because the names are essentially interchangeable and both pertain to the same kind of school. If you plan on commuting to classes you will need to find a school that is within driving distance of your Montgomery home. Tuition will additionally be an important factor when evaluating prospective schools. Just remember that because a school is the nearest or the cheapest it's not always the ideal choice. There are a number of other factors that you should evaluate when comparing schools, for instance their reputation and accreditation. We will go over what questions you should ask concerning the aesthetician schools you are thinking about later within this article. Before we do, let's talk a bit about what types of training programs are available.
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There are basically two options offered to get esthetician 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 normally call for 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 major areas of cosmetology. Shorter programs are available if you wish to concentrate on just one area, for example esthetics. A degree program will also likely include management and marketing training so that graduates are better prepared to operate a parlor or other Montgomery AL business. More advanced degrees are not prevalent, but Bachelor and Master's degree programs are available in such specializations as salon or spa management. Whichever type of course you decide on, it's important to make sure that it's approved by the Alabama Board of Cosmetology. Numerous states only approve schools that are accredited by certain highly regarded organizations, including the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS). We will cover the advantages of accreditation for the school you decide on in the next section.
Online Esthetics Schools
Online esthetician classes are advantageous for Montgomery AL students who are employed full-time and have family obligations that make it hard to enroll in a more traditional school. There are many online beauty school programs available that can be attended via a home computer or laptop at the student's convenience. More traditional cosmetology programs are often fast paced since many programs are as short as 6 or 8 months. This means that a substantial amount of time is spent in the classroom. With internet courses, you are dealing with the same volume of material, but you're not spending many hours outside of your home or commuting back and forth from classes. On the other hand, it's vital that the school you select can provide internship training in nearby salons and parlors to ensure that you also receive the hands-on training necessary for a complete education. Without the internship part of the training, it's impossible to gain the skills needed to work in any facet of the cosmetology industry. So be sure if you decide to enroll in an online school to verify that internship training is provided in your area.
What to Ask Aesthetician Trade Schools
Below is a series of questions that you should research for any esthetician training school you are contemplating. As we have previously discussed, the location of the school relative to your Montgomery home, in addition to the expense of tuition, will most likely be your first qualifiers. Whether you wish to earn a certificate, diploma or a degree will undoubtedly be next on your list. But once you have narrowed your school options based on those preliminary qualifications, there are additional factors that you should research and consider before enrolling in a cosmetology program. Following we have compiled some of those additional questions that you need to ask each school before making a final selection.
Is the Esthetician Program Accredited? It's necessary to make sure that the esthetician training program you enroll in 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). Programs accredited by the NACCAS must measure up to their high standards assuring a superior curriculum and education. Accreditation can also be essential for securing student loans or financial aid, which typically are not available for non- accredited schools. It's also a requirement for licensing in many states that the training be accredited. And as a final benefit, a number of Montgomery AL employers will not employ recent graduates of non-accredited schools, or might look more positively upon those with accredited training.
Does the School have a Great Reputation? Each esthetician institute that you are seriously considering should have a good to excellent reputation within the field. Being accredited is a good starting point. Next, ask the schools for endorsements from their network of employers where they have referred their students. Check that the schools have high job placement rates, showing that their students are highly sought after. Visit rating services for reviews in addition to the school's accrediting organizations. If you have any connections with Montgomery AL salon owners or managers, or any person working in the industry, ask them if they are acquainted with the schools you are looking at. They may even be able to propose others that you had not thought of. And last, contact the Alabama school licensing authority to find out if there have been any complaints submitted or if the schools are in full compliance.
What’s the School’s Specialty? A number of esthetician schools offer programs that are comprehensive in nature, concentrating on all areas of cosmetology. Others are more focused, offering training in a particular specialty, for instance hairstyling, manicuring or electrolysis. Schools that offer degree programs frequently expand into a management and marketing curriculum. So it's essential that you enroll in a school that focuses on your area of interest. Since your intention 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 vision is to start a Montgomery AL beauty salon, then you want to enroll in a degree program that will teach you how to be an owner/operator as well. Picking a highly ranked school with a weak program in the specialty you are pursuing will not deliver the training you require.
Is Enough Hands-On Training Provided? Learning and perfecting esthetician skills and techniques involves plenty of practice on people. Ask how much live, hands-on training is furnished in the beauty courses you will be attending. A number of schools have salons on campus that make it possible for students to practice their developing skills on volunteers. If a beauty academy offers limited or no scheduled live training, but instead depends predominantly on utilizing mannequins, it might not be the best alternative for acquiring your skills. Therefore try to find other schools that provide this type of training.
Does the School have a Job Placement Program? When a student graduates from an esthetician academy, it's essential that she or he receives aid in finding that very first job. Job placement programs are an integral part of that process. Schools that provide aid maintain relationships with Montgomery AL businesses that are searching for skilled graduates available for hiring. Confirm that the programs you are contemplating have job placement programs and ask which salons and organizations they refer students to. Also, find out what their job placement rates are. Higher rates not only confirm that they have broad 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. Ask if the schools you are looking at have a financial aid office. Speak with a counselor and find out what student loans or grants you may get approved for. If the school is a member of the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS), it will have scholarships accessible to students also. If a school meets each of your other qualifications with the exception of expense, do not omit it as an option until you find out what financial aid may be offered.
Enroll in the Right Montgomery Esthetician Program
Choosing and enrolling in the right esthetician program is essential to obtain the necessary training to become a licensed cosmetology technician. Make sure to ask all the questions that you need to so as to feel certain about your decision. Be sure to organize all of the responses you receive from the beauty school admissions departments, prioritize what matters the most to you, and then utilize that information to compare schools. A reasonable beginning in your due diligence procedure is to make certain that the institution and program you choose are accredited and have exceptional reputations within the profession. If you start with that base, and answer the additional questions supplied in this article, you will be able to filter your list of schools so that you can make the right choice. Once you graduate and pass your licensing exam, you will be self-assured that you are qualified to launch your new career as a professional esthetician in Montgomery Alabama.