How to Enroll In the Best Aesthetician Training Program Near Opelika Alabama
Since you have made a decision to enter the field of cosmetology and attend an esthetician school near Opelika AL, the process starts to locate and enroll in the best program. It's essential that the school you choose not only furnishes the appropriate education for the specialty you have decided on, but also prepares you for passing the licensing examination. When you begin your initial search, you may be somewhat unclear about the distinction between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don't be, because the names are basically interchangeable and both refer to the same type of school. If you plan on commuting to classes you will want to locate a school that is within driving distance of your Opelika residence. Tuition will likewise be an important factor when evaluating prospective schools. Just keep in mind that because a school is the nearest or the lowest cost it's not necessarily the best choice. There are many other considerations that you should evaluate when analyzing schools, such as their reputation and accreditation. We will go over what questions you should ask regarding the aesthetician schools you are considering later in this article. Before we do, let's talk a bit about what kinds of programs are available.
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There are essentially two options offered to get esthetician training and a credential after completion. You can enroll in a certificate (or diploma) program, or you can pursue an Associate's degree. Certificate programs usually call for 12 to 18 months to complete, while an Associate's degree ordinarily takes about 2 years. If you enroll in a certificate program you will be trained in all of the major areas of cosmetology. Shorter programs are offered if you prefer to focus on just one area, for instance esthetics. A degree program will also most likely feature management and marketing training so that graduates are better prepared to run a parlor or other Opelika AL business. More advanced degrees are not typical, but Bachelor and Master's degree programs are offered in such specializations as salon or spa management. Whichever type of training program you choose, it's essential to make sure that it's approved by the Alabama Board of Cosmetology. Many states only certify schools that are accredited by certain respected organizations, including the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS). We will review the advantages of accreditation for the school you select in the following section.
Online Esthetics Schools
Online esthetician schools are advantageous for Opelika AL students who are employed full time and have family commitments that make it hard to attend a more traditional school. There are a large number of online beauty school programs available that can be attended through a desktop computer or laptop at the student's convenience. More traditional cosmetology programs are frequently fast paced since many programs are as short as six or eight months. This means that a significant amount of time is spent in the classroom. With internet programs, you are dealing with the same amount of material, but you're not spending many hours away from your home or driving to and from classes. On the other hand, it's important that the training program you choose can provide internship training in area salons and parlors to ensure that you also get the hands-on training necessary for a comprehensive education. Without the internship portion 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 decide to enroll in an online program to verify that internship training is available in your area.
What to Ask Esthetician Training Courses
Below is a list of questions that you should research for any esthetician training program you are considering. As we have previously discussed, the location of the school relative to your Opelika home, in addition to the cost of tuition, will most likely be your initial qualifiers. Whether you would like to earn a certificate, diploma or a degree will undoubtedly be next on your list. But once you have reduced your school choices based on those preliminary qualifications, there are even more factors that you should research and consider before enrolling in a cosmetology program. Following we have collected several of those additional questions that you should ask every school before making a final decision.
Is the Esthetician School Accredited? It's important to make certain that the esthetician school you pick is accredited. The accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education recognized 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 may also be necessary for obtaining student loans or financial aid, which often are not obtainable for non- accredited schools. It's also a prerequisite for licensing in several states that the training be accredited. And as a final benefit, many Opelika AL employers will not employ recent graduates of non-accredited schools, or may look more positively upon individuals with accredited training.
Does the School have a Great Reputation? Each esthetician institute that you are seriously evaluating should have a good to excellent reputation within the field. 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, signifying that their students are highly sought after. Visit rating companies for reviews in addition to the school's accrediting organizations. If you have any relationships with Opelika AL salon owners or managers, or any person working in the industry, ask them if they are acquainted with the schools you are considering. They might even be able to suggest others that you had not considered. And finally, contact the Alabama school licensing authority to find out if there have been any grievances submitted or if the schools are in complete compliance.
What’s the School’s Specialty? Some esthetician schools offer programs that are comprehensive 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 typically broaden into a management and marketing curriculum. So it's essential that you choose a school that specializes in your area of interest. Since your goal is to be trained as an esthetician, make sure that the school you enroll in is accredited and respected for that program. If your vision is to start a Opelika AL beauty salon, then you want to enroll in a degree program that will teach you how to be an owner/operator as well. Selecting a highly ranked school with a weak program in the specialty you are pursuing will not deliver the training you require.
Is Enough Live Training Provided? Studying and mastering esthetician skills and techniques demands lots of practice on people. Check how much live, hands-on training is provided in the beauty classes you will be attending. Some schools have salons on campus that enable students to practice their developing skills on volunteers. If a beauty program provides limited or no scheduled live training, but rather relies heavily on using mannequins, it may not be the most effective alternative for acquiring your skills. Therefore search for other schools that furnish this kind of training.
Does the School have a Job Placement Program? When a student graduates from an esthetician program, it's essential that he or she receives aid in landing that first job. Job placement programs are an integral part of that process. Schools that furnish assistance develop relationships with Opelika AL businesses that are searching for trained graduates available for hiring. Confirm that the programs you are contemplating have job placement programs and find out which salons and organizations they refer students to. Also, ask what their job placement rates are. High rates not only affirm that they have wide networks of employers, but that their programs are highly regarded as well.
Is Financial Aid Available? Many esthetician schools provide financial aid or student loan assistance for their students. Check if the schools you are considering have a financial aid office. Talk to 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 offered to students too. If a school meets each of your other qualifications with the exception of cost, do not discard it as an alternative until you determine what financial help may be offered.
Enroll in the Best Opelika Esthetician Program
Locating and enrolling in the right esthetician program is essential to receive the proper training to become a licensed cosmetology technician. Be sure to ask all the questions that you need to so as to feel confident about your decision. Make sure to organize all of the responses you get from the cosmetology school admissions departments, focus on what matters the most to you, and then use that information to compare schools. A reasonable beginning in your due diligence process is to make certain that the academy and program you choose are accredited and have impressive reputations within the field. If you begin with that base, and answer the additional questions presented in this article, you will be able to filter 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 ready to start your new career as a professional esthetician in Opelika Alabama.