How to Enroll In the Right Aesthetician Training Program Near Opelika Alabama
Now that you have made a decision to enter the field of cosmetology and attend an esthetician school near Opelika AL, the task begins to find and enroll in the right program. It's essential that the school you pick not only furnishes the appropriate instruction for the specialty you have selected, but also readies you for passing the licensing exam. When you start your initial search, you might be rather puzzled about the distinction between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don't be, because the names are pretty much 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 Opelika home. Tuition will also be a critical factor when reviewing potential schools. Just remember that because a school is the nearest or the least expensive it's not always the ideal choice. There are many other considerations that you should evaluate when comparing schools, such as their reputation and accreditation. We will examine what questions you should ask about the aesthetician schools you are looking at later in this article. Before we do, let's talk a little bit about what types of training programs are offered.
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There are primarily two options offered to obtain esthetician 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 usually require 12 to 18 months to finish, while an Associate's degree ordinarily 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 want to concentrate on just one area, for example esthetics. A degree program will also likely feature management and marketing training in order that graduates are better prepared to manage a salon or other Opelika AL business. Higher degrees are not typical, but Bachelor and Master's degree programs are offered in such specializations as salon or spa management. Whatever type of training program you choose, it's important to make certain that it's approved by the Alabama Board of Cosmetology. Many states only recognize schools that are accredited by certain reputable organizations, for instance the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS). We will examine the benefits of accreditation for the school you decide on in the upcoming section.
Online Esthetics Schools
Online esthetician programs are accommodating for Opelika AL students who are working full-time and have family responsibilities that make it difficult to enroll in a more traditional school. There are many web-based beauty school programs offered that can be accessed via a personal computer or laptop at the student's convenience. More traditional cosmetology programs are typically fast paced because many programs are as brief as six or eight months. This means that a large portion of time is spent in the classroom. With online programs, you are dealing with the same amount of material, but you are not spending many hours outside of your home or driving back and forth from classes. However, it's important that the school you choose can provide internship training in area 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 impossible to acquire the skills necessary to work in any area of the cosmetology industry. So be sure if you choose to enroll in an online school to verify that internship training is available in your area.
Questions to Ask Esthetician Trade Schools
Below is a series of questions that you need to look into for any esthetician training school you are contemplating. As we have already covered, the location of the school in relation to your Opelika residence, in addition to the expense of tuition, will undoubtedly be your primary qualifiers. Whether you would like 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 even more factors that you must research and consider before enrolling in a cosmetology school. Following we have collected some of those additional questions that you need to ask each school before making a final determination.
Is the Esthetician School Accredited? It's necessary to make sure that the esthetician college 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). Programs accredited by the NACCAS must meet their high standards assuring a superior curriculum and education. Accreditation can also be necessary for getting student loans or financial aid, which typically are not available for non- accredited schools. It's also a criteria for licensing in many states that the training be accredited. And as a final benefit, many Opelika AL employers will not hire recent graduates of non-accredited schools, or may look more positively upon those with accredited training.
Does the School have a Good Reputation? Every esthetician institute that you are seriously evaluating should have a good to excellent reputation within the industry. Being accredited is an excellent starting point. Next, ask the schools for testimonials 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. Check rating services for reviews together with the school's accrediting organizations. If you have any relationships with Opelika AL salon owners or managers, or any person working in the trade, ask them if they are familiar with the schools you are looking at. They may even be able to recommend others that you had not looked into. Finally, consult the Alabama school licensing authority to see if there have been any grievances submitted or if the schools are in complete compliance.
What’s the School’s Focus? A number of esthetician schools offer programs that are broad in nature, focusing on all facets of cosmetology. Others are more focused, offering training in a particular specialty, for example hairstyling, manicuring or electrolysis. Schools that offer degree programs often broaden into a management and marketing curriculum. So it's important that you choose a school that specializes in your area of interest. Since your objective 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 open a Opelika AL beauty salon, then you need to enroll in a degree program that will teach you how to be an owner/operator as well. Choosing a highly rated school with a weak program in the specialty you are pursuing will not provide the training you require.
Is Any Hands-On Training Provided? Practicing and mastering esthetician techniques and abilities demands lots of practice on volunteers. Find out how much live, hands-on training is included in the beauty classes you will be attending. A number of schools have salons on site that enable students to practice their growing talents on real people. If a beauty school furnishes limited or no scheduled live training, but instead relies heavily on using mannequins, it might not be the best option for acquiring your skills. So search for alternate schools that provide this kind of training.
Does the School have a Job Placement Program? When a student graduates from an esthetician school, it's imperative that he or she gets help in securing that first job. Job placement programs are an important part of that process. Schools that provide assistance maintain relationships with Opelika AL employers that are looking for trained graduates available for hiring. Verify that the schools you are contemplating have job placement programs and find out which salons and businesses they refer students to. In addition, find out what their job placement rates are. High rates not only confirm that they have extensive networks of employers, but that their programs are highly regarded as well.
Is Financial Assistance Available? Almost all esthetician schools offer financial aid or student loan assistance for their students. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have a financial aid department. Talk to a counselor and identify 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 offered to students also. If a school satisfies all of your other qualifications with the exception of expense, do not omit it as an option until you determine what financial help may be offered.
Enroll in the Best Opelika Esthetician Course
Choosing and enrolling in the right esthetician program is essential to receive the proper training to become a licensed cosmetology technician. Make sure to ask all the questions that you require in order to feel confident about your decision. Don't forget to organize all of the information you get from the cosmetology school admissions departments, prioritize what matters the most to you, and then utilize that data to contrast schools. A reasonable start in your due diligence procedure is to make sure that the college and program you choose are accredited and have impressive reputations within the profession. If you begin with that foundation, and answer the additional questions provided in this article, you will be able to narrow down your list of schools so that you can make the ideal selection. Once you graduate and pass your licensing test, you will be self-assured that you are prepared to begin your new career as a professional esthetician in Opelika Alabama.