How to Choose the Best Esthetician Program Near Anchorage Alaska
Since you have made a decision to enter the field of cosmetology and enroll in an esthetician school near Anchorage AK, the task begins to search for and enroll in the right program. It's imperative that the school you choose not only furnishes the necessary education for the specialty you have chosen, but also readies you for passing the licensing examination. When you begin your preliminary search, you might be somewhat puzzled about the contrast between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don't be, because the names are pretty much interchangeable and both refer to the same kind of school. If you intend on commuting to classes you will need to find a school that is within driving distance of your Anchorage home. Tuition will also be an important factor when reviewing possible schools. Just keep in mind that because a school is the closest or the lowest cost it's not automatically the ideal choice. There are several other considerations that you should weigh when comparing schools, for example their reputation and accreditation. We will examine what questions you should ask regarding the aesthetician schools you are considering later in this article. Before we do, let's talk a little bit about what types of training programs are available.
It Takes Just a Few Minutes to Start Your Esthetician Career Below!
Esthetics Degrees and Certificates
There are basically two avenues available to get 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 generally take 12 to 18 months to complete, 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 prefer to focus on just one area, for instance esthetics. A degree program will also likely incorporate management and marketing training to ensure that graduates are better prepared to manage a salon or other Anchorage AK business. Higher degrees are not prevalent, but Bachelor and Master's degree programs are offered in such areas as salon or spa management. Whatever type of training program you decide on, it's essential to make sure that it's recognized by the Alaska Board of Cosmetology. A number of states only recognize schools that are accredited by certain respected agencies, for example the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS). We will review the advantages of accreditation for the school you select in the upcoming segment.
Online Esthetics Courses
Online esthetician programs are convenient for Anchorage AK students who are working full-time and have family commitments that make it challenging to enroll in a more traditional school. There are numerous online beauty school programs available that can be attended through a personal computer or laptop at the student's convenience. More traditional cosmetology programs are often fast paced given that many programs are as brief as 6 or 8 months. This means that a large amount of time is spent in the classroom. With internet courses, you are covering the same amount of material, but you are not spending numerous hours away from your home or driving to and from classes. On the other hand, it's essential that the program you select 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 part of the training, it's difficult to gain the skills required to work in any facet of the cosmetology industry. So make sure if you choose to enroll in an online program to verify that internship training is provided in your area.
What to Ask Esthetician Degree Programs
Below is a list of questions that you should investigate for any esthetician training school you are contemplating. As we have already covered, the location of the school in relation to your Anchorage residence, in addition to the price of tuition, will most likely be your first 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 initial 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 should ask every school before making a final determination.
Is the Esthetician Program Accredited? It's necessary to make certain that the esthetician college you choose is accredited. The accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education certified local or national agency, such as the National Accrediting Commission for Cosmetology Arts & Sciences (NACCAS). Schools accredited by the NACCAS must meet their high standards ensuring a quality curriculum and education. Accreditation can also be important for securing student loans or financial aid, which frequently 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 concluding benefit, many Anchorage AK employers will not recruit recent graduates of non-accredited schools, or might look more positively upon individuals with accredited training.
Does the School have a Good Reputation? Each esthetician college that you are seriously considering should have a good to outstanding reputation within the field. Being accredited is a good starting point. Next, ask the schools for testimonials from their network of businesses where they have referred their students. Verify that the schools have high job placement rates, showing that their students are highly sought after. Check rating services for reviews as well as the school's accrediting organizations. If you have any relationships with Anchorage AK salon owners or managers, or anyone working in the business, ask them if they are familiar with the schools you are looking at. They might even be able to suggest others that you had not thought of. And last, contact the Alaska school licensing authority to see if there have been any complaints filed or if the schools are in complete compliance.
What’s the School’s Focus? Many esthetician schools offer programs that are comprehensive 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 frequently broaden into a management and marketing curriculum. So it's imperative 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 well regarded for that program. If your desire is to launch a Anchorage AK 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 regarded school with a poor program in the specialty you are seeking will not provide the training you require.
Is Plenty of Hands-On Training Provided? Practicing and refining esthetician skills and techniques demands lots of practice on volunteers. Find out how much live, hands-on training is furnished in the beauty lessons you will be attending. Some schools have salons on site that allow students to practice their developing skills on real people. If a beauty program provides limited or no scheduled live training, but rather depends heavily on utilizing mannequins, it may not be the best option for acquiring your skills. So search for alternate schools that offer this kind of training.
Does the School have a Job Placement Program? Once a student graduates from an esthetician program, it's imperative that he or she receives assistance in securing that first job. Job placement programs are an important part of that process. Schools that offer help maintain relationships with Anchorage AK businesses that are seeking skilled graduates available for hiring. Verify that the programs you are looking at have job placement programs and inquire which salons and establishments they refer students to. In addition, find out what their job placement rates are. Higher rates not only verify that they have extensive networks of employers, but that their programs are highly respected as well.
Is Financial Assistance Offered? Most esthetician schools offer financial aid or student loan assistance for their students. Ask if the schools you are investigating 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 accessible to students also. If a school fulfills each of your other qualifications except for expense, do not discard it as an option until you find out what financial aid may be provided.
Enroll in the Right Anchorage Esthetician Course
Locating and enrolling in the right esthetician college is important to receive the proper training to become a licensed cosmetology technician. Be sure to ask all the questions that you require so as to feel certain about your decision. Make certain to organize all of the responses you receive from the beauty school admissions departments, focus on what matters the most to you, and then utilize that information to contrast schools. A good beginning in your due diligence process is to make sure that the school and program you pick are accredited and have outstanding reputations within the field. If you start with that base, and address the additional questions provided in this article, you will be able to reduce your list of schools so that you can make the proper choice. Once you graduate and pass your licensing examination, you will be confident that you are prepared to begin your career as a professional esthetician in Anchorage Alaska.