How to Find the Right Aesthetician College Near Prattville Alabama
Now that you have made a decision to enter the field of cosmetology and enroll in an esthetician school near Prattville AL, the task begins to search for and enroll in the ideal program. It's imperative that the program you choose not only provides the proper training for the specialty you have selected, but also prepares you for passing the licensing examination. When you begin your preliminary search, you may be a little bit puzzled about the distinction between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don't be, because the titles are pretty much interchangeable and both relate to the same kind of school. If you anticipate commuting to classes you will want to choose a school that is within driving distance of your Prattville home. Tuition will also be an important aspect when reviewing potential schools. Just keep in mind that because a school is the nearest or the least expensive it's not necessarily the right option. There are many other factors that you should weigh when analyzing schools, such as 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 training programs are offered.
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There are primarily two options available to receive 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 finish, while an Associate's degree usually takes about 2 years. If you enroll in a certificate program you will be instructed in each of the main areas of cosmetology. Briefer programs are available if you wish to focus on just one area, for instance esthetics. A degree program will also likely feature management and marketing training in order that graduates are better prepared to operate a parlor or other Prattville AL business. Higher degrees are not common, but Bachelor and Master's degree programs are offered in such areas as salon or spa management. Whatever type of course you decide on, it's important to make certain that it's recognized by the Alabama Board of Cosmetology. Numerous states only recognize schools that are accredited by certain respected organizations, for instance the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS). We will cover the advantages of accreditation for the school you select in the following section.
Online Esthetics Programs
Online esthetician programs are convenient for Prattville 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 online cosmetology school programs available that can be accessed by means of a home computer or laptop at the student's convenience. More conventional beauty programs are often fast paced since many programs are as short as six or eight months. This means that a substantial portion of time is spent in the classroom. With internet courses, you are dealing with the same amount of material, but you're not devoting numerous hours outside of your home or commuting to and from classes. However, it's essential that the school you pick can provide internship training in area salons and parlors so that you also obtain the hands-on training necessary for a comprehensive education. Without the internship portion of the training, it's impossible to acquire the skills required to work in any area of the cosmetology field. So make sure if you decide to enroll in an online school to confirm that internship training is available in your area.
What to Ask Aesthetician Programs
Below is a series of questions that you should investigate for any esthetician training program you are considering. As we have already discussed, the location of the school relative to your Prattville home, as well as the price of tuition, will probably be your initial 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 additional factors that you need to research and take into consideration before enrolling in a cosmetology program. Following we have compiled several of those additional questions that you should ask each school before making a final decision.
Is the Esthetician Program Accredited? It's important to make sure that the esthetician school you select 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 comply with their high standards assuring a quality curriculum and education. Accreditation may also be important for acquiring student loans or financial aid, which frequently are not offered for non- accredited schools. It's also a criteria for licensing in several states that the training be accredited. And as a concluding benefit, many Prattville AL businesses will not hire recent graduates of non-accredited schools, or might look more favorably upon those with accredited training.
Does the School have a Great Reputation? Every esthetician college 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 testimonials from their network of employers where they have referred their students. Check that the schools have high job placement rates, attesting that their students are highly demanded. Check rating services for reviews in addition to the school's accrediting organizations. If you have any contacts with Prattville AL salon owners or managers, or any person working in the business, 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 looked into. Finally, consult the Alabama school licensing authority to see if there have been any grievances filed or if the schools are in full compliance.
What’s the School’s Focus? A number of esthetician schools offer programs that are comprehensive in nature, focusing on all areas of cosmetology. Others are more focused, offering training in a specific specialty, such as hairstyling, manicuring or electrolysis. Schools that offer degree programs often broaden into a management and marketing curriculum. So it's imperative that you pick a school that focuses on your area of interest. Since your objective is to be trained as an esthetician, make certain that the school you enroll in is accredited and well regarded for that program. If your desire is to launch a Prattville 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 need.
Is Enough Hands-On Training Provided? Learning and refining esthetician skills and techniques requires lots of practice on volunteers. Ask how much live, hands-on training is provided in the beauty classes you will be attending. A number of schools have salons on site that allow students to practice their growing talents on real people. If a beauty academy offers little or no scheduled live training, but rather depends predominantly on the use of mannequins, it may not be the best alternative for cultivating your skills. Therefore look for alternate schools that offer this kind of training.
Does the School Provide Job Assistance? As soon as a student graduates from an esthetician program, it's essential that he or she receives aid in landing that initial job. Job placement programs are an important part of that process. Schools that provide assistance maintain relationships with Prattville AL businesses that are looking for qualified graduates available for hiring. Confirm that the schools you are looking at have job placement programs and inquire which salons and businesses they refer students to. Also, find out what their job placement rates are. Higher rates not only confirm that they have extensive networks of employers, but that their programs are highly respected as well.
Is Financial Assistance Available? Most esthetician schools provide financial aid or student loan assistance for their students. Check if the schools you are looking at have a financial aid department. Consult with a counselor and learn what student loans or grants you might qualify for. If the school is a member of the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS), it will have scholarships offered to students too. If a school meets each of your other qualifications except for cost, do not omit it as an option before you determine what financial aid may be provided.
Enroll in the Right Prattville Esthetician Program
Picking and enrolling in the ideal esthetician school is important to get the appropriate training to become a licensed cosmetology technician. Make sure to ask all the questions that you require so as to feel positive about your decision. Don't forget to organize all of the information you receive from the beauty school admissions departments, prioritize what matters the most to you, and then use that data to compare schools. A reasonable start in your due diligence procedure is to make certain that the institution and program you select are accredited and have impressive reputations within the field. If you start with that base, and answer the additional questions presented in this post, you will be able to narrow down your list of schools so that you can make the proper selection. And when you graduate and pass your licensing exam, you will be self-assured that you are ready to launch your new career as a professional esthetician in Prattville Alabama.