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How to Pick the Best Esthetician College Near Opelika Alabama

Opelika Alabama esthetician giving facial treatment with machineOnce you have made a decision to enter the field of cosmetology and attend an esthetician school near Opelika AL, the process starts to search for and enroll in the right program. It's essential that the school you select not only furnishes the proper instruction for the specialty you have chosen, but also prepares you for passing the licensing exam. When you start your preliminary search, you may be somewhat unclear about the difference between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don't be, because the names are pretty much interchangeable and both pertain to the same type of school. If you plan on commuting to classes you will want to choose a school that is within driving distance of your Opelika home. Tuition will likewise be an important factor when evaluating potential schools. Just remember that because a school is the nearest or the lowest cost it's not always the best option. There are various other considerations that you should evaluate when comparing schools, for example their reputation and accreditation. We will examine what questions you should ask concerning the aesthetician schools you are considering later within this article. Before we do, let's talk a little bit about what types of programs are available.

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Esthetics Degrees and Certificates

Opelika Alabama aesthetician giving wax hair removal treatmentThere are basically two avenues 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 generally require 12 to 18 months to complete, while an Associate's degree commonly 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 want to focus on just one area, for instance esthetics. A degree program will also most likely incorporate management and marketing training to ensure that graduates are better prepared to manage a parlor or other Opelika AL business. More advanced degrees are not common, but Bachelor and Master's degree programs are offered in such specializations as salon or spa management. Whatever type of training program you go with, it's important to make certain that it's recognized by the Alabama Board of Cosmetology. Many states only recognize schools that are accredited by certain highly regarded agencies, for instance the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS). We will discuss the advantages of accreditation for the school you select in the next section.

Online Esthetician Schools

Opelika Alabama young lady taking esthetician classes onlineOnline esthetician programs are convenient for Opelika AL students who are employed full time and have family obligations that make it challenging to enroll in a more traditional school. There are numerous web-based beauty school programs available that can be accessed by means of a desktop computer or laptop at the student's convenience. More traditional cosmetology schools are often fast paced because many courses are as brief as 6 or 8 months. This means that a large amount of time is spent in the classroom. With internet programs, you are dealing with the same amount of material, but you're not devoting numerous hours away from your home or driving back and forth from classes. On the other hand, it's imperative that the program you choose can provide internship training in area salons and parlors to ensure that you also receive the hands-on training required for a comprehensive education. Without the internship portion of the training, it's impossible to acquire the skills needed to work in any facet of the cosmetology field. So be sure if you decide to enroll in an online school to verify that internship training is available in your area.

Questions to Ask Aesthetician Programs

Following is a list of questions that you will want to research for any esthetician training program you are contemplating. As we have already covered, the location of the school relative to your Opelika home, together with the price of tuition, will probably be your first qualifiers. Whether you wish to earn a certificate, diploma or a degree will probably be next on your list. But once you have narrowed your school options based on those initial qualifications, there are even more factors that you should research and consider before enrolling in a cosmetology school. Following we have put together several of those additional questions that you need to ask each school before making a final decision.

Is the Esthetician School Accredited? It's necessary to make certain that the esthetician school you select 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 quality curriculum and education. Accreditation may also be necessary for getting student loans or financial aid, which frequently are not obtainable 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 Opelika AL businesses will not recruit recent graduates of non-accredited schools, or may look more favorably upon individuals with accredited training.

Does the School have a Great Reputation?  Any esthetician school 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 placed their students. Check that the schools have high job placement rates, indicating that their students are highly demanded. Check rating companies for reviews as well as the school's accrediting agencies. If you have any contacts with Opelika AL salon owners or managers, or anyone working in the field, ask them if they are acquainted with the schools you are reviewing. They may even be able to suggest others that you had not looked into. And finally, consult the Alabama school licensing authority to find out if there have been any complaints filed or if the schools are in full compliance.

What’s the School’s Specialty?  Many esthetician schools offer programs that are broad in nature, concentrating on all facets of cosmetology. Others are more focused, providing training in a particular specialty, for example hairstyling, manicuring or electrolysis. Schools that offer degree programs typically expand into a management and marketing curriculum. So it's important that you pick a school that focuses on 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 well regarded for that program. If your aspiration is to start 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 ranked school with a poor program in the specialty you are pursuing will not deliver the training you need.

Is Plenty of Live Training Provided?  Practicing and refining esthetician techniques and abilities demands lots of practice on people. Ask how much live, hands-on training is included in the cosmetology classes you will be attending. Some schools have salons on site that make it possible for students to practice their growing talents on real people. If a beauty school offers minimal or no scheduled live training, but instead depends heavily on utilizing mannequins, it may not be the most effective alternative for developing your skills. So look for alternate schools that offer this type of training.

Does the School have a Job Placement Program?  As soon as a student graduates from an esthetician school, it's important that she or he receives support in finding that initial job. Job placement programs are an integral part of that process. Schools that furnish assistance develop relationships with Opelika AL employers that are searching for trained graduates available for hiring. Check that the schools you are considering have job placement programs and ask which salons and businesses they refer students to. Additionally, 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 Assistance Available?  Many esthetician schools offer financial aid or student loan assistance for their students. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have a financial aid office. Talk to a counselor and learn what student loans or grants you may qualify for. If the school belongs to the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS), it will have scholarships accessible to students too. If a school fulfills each of your other qualifications with the exception of cost, do not discard it as an alternative before you learn what financial aid may be provided.

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Enroll in the Right Opelika Esthetician Course

Picking and enrolling in the ideal esthetician school is imperative to receive the necessary training to become a licensed cosmetology specialist. Make sure to ask all the questions that you require in order to feel certain about your decision. Don't forget to organize all of the responses you get from the beauty school admissions departments, focus on what matters the most to you, and then utilize that information to contrast schools. A reasonable beginning in your due diligence process is to make sure that the college and program you choose are accredited and have impressive reputations within the field. If you begin with that foundation, and address the additional questions presented in this article, you will be able to reduce your list of schools so that you can make the ideal choice. Once you graduate and pass your licensing exam, you will be self-assured that you are ready to begin your career as a professional esthetician in Opelika Alabama.



 

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