How to Find the Right Esthetics Program near Alexandria Minnesota
Once you have decided to enter the field of cosmetology and enroll in an esthetician school near Alexandria MN, the task begins to find and enroll in the right program. It’s important that the school you choose not only furnishes the necessary education for the specialty you have decided on, but also readies you for passing the licensing examination. When you start your initial search, you may be somewhat puzzled about the distinction between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don’t be, because the names are essentially interchangeable and both relate to the same kind of school. We’ll talk a little bit further about that in the next section. If you intend on commuting to classes you will need to locate a school that is within driving distance of your Alexandria residence. Tuition will also be a critical consideration when assessing potential schools. Just bear in mind that because a school is the nearest or the least expensive it’s not always the best choice. There are a number of other factors that you should evaluate when reviewing schools, for example their reputation and accreditation. We will examine what questions you should ask about the cosmetology schools you are considering later in this article. Before we do, let’s discuss a bit about what cosmetology is, and what kinds of programs are available.
What is Cosmetology
Cosmetology is an occupation that is everything about making the human body look more attractive through the application of cosmetics. So of course it makes sense that a number of cosmetology schools are described as beauty schools. Many of us think of makeup when we hear the term cosmetics, but really a cosmetic can be almost anything that improves the appearance of a person’s skin, hair or nails. If you want to work as a cosmetologist, most states mandate that you take some kind of specialized training and then be licensed. Once licensed, the work environments include not only Alexandria MN beauty salons and barber shops, but also such venues as spas, hotels and resorts. Many cosmetologists, after they have gained experience and a customer base, open their own shops or salons. Others will begin seeing clients either in their own residences or will travel to the client’s home, or both. Cosmetology college graduates go by many names and work in a wide variety of specialties including:
- Nail Technicians
- Makeup Artists
- Hair Coloring Specialists
- Electrolysis Technicians
As already stated, in most states practicing cosmetologists must be licensed. In a few states there is an exception. Only those offering more skilled services, such as hairstylists, are required to be licensed. Others working in cosmetology and less skilled, including shampooers, are not required to get licensed in those states.
There are essentially two avenues available to obtain 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 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 all of the major areas of cosmetology. Shorter programs are available if you want to focus on just one area, such as 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 Alexandria MN business. Higher degrees are not prevalent, but Bachelor and Master’s degree programs are available in such specialties as salon or spa management. Whichever type of training program you choose, it’s imperative to make sure that it’s certified by the Minnesota Board of Cosmetology. Numerous states only recognize schools that are accredited by certain respected agencies, such as the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS). We will cover the benefits of accreditation for the school you select in the next section.
Online Esthetics Courses
Online esthetician schools are advantageous for Alexandria MN students who are employed full time and have family obligations that make it challenging to enroll in a more traditional school. There are a large number of web-based beauty school programs offered that can be accessed via a home computer or laptop at the student’s convenience. More traditional beauty schools are often fast paced due to the fact that many programs are as short as six or eight months. This means that a significant portion of time is spent in the classroom. With online courses, you are dealing with the same volume of material, but you’re not devoting numerous hours outside of your home or commuting to and from classes. However, it’s important that the training program you choose can provide internship training in nearby salons and parlors in order that you also obtain the hands-on training needed for a comprehensive education. Without the internship portion of the training, it’s impossible to acquire the skills necessary to work in any facet of the cosmetology industry. So make sure if you decide to enroll in an online program to verify that internship training is available in your area.
What to Ask Esthetics Trade Schools
Following is a list of questions that you will want to research for any esthetician training school you are considering. As we have already covered, the location of the school in relation to your Alexandria residence, as well as the expense of tuition, will most likely be your primary qualifiers. Whether you would like to earn a certificate, diploma or a degree will probably be next on your list. But once you have reduced your school choices based on those preliminary qualifications, there are additional factors that you need to research and take into consideration before enrolling in a cosmetology school. Following we have put together some of those additional questions that you need to ask every school before making a final determination.
Is the Program Accredited? It’s important to make certain that the esthetician training program you select is accredited. The accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged local or national organization, such as the National Accrediting Commission for Cosmetology Arts & Sciences (NACCAS). Programs accredited by the NACCAS must meet their high standards guaranteeing a quality curriculum and education. Accreditation may also be essential for securing student loans or financial aid, which frequently are not offered in 56308 for non- accredited schools. It’s also a prerequisite for licensing in many states that the training be accredited. And as a concluding benefit, numerous Alexandria MN 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? Any esthetician college that you are seriously evaluating should have a good to excellent reputation within the industry. Being accredited is a good 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 regarded. Check rating services for reviews together with the school’s accrediting agencies. If you have any relationships with Alexandria MN salon owners or managers, or any person working in the trade, 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. And last, check with the Minnesota school licensing authority to see if there have been any grievances submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
What’s the School’s Focus? Some 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 instance hairstyling, manicuring or electrolysis. Schools that offer degree programs typically broaden into a management and marketing curriculum. So it’s imperative that you choose a school that specializes in your area of interest. If 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 open a Alexandria MN beauty salon, then you want to enroll in a degree program that will teach you how to be an owner/operator. Selecting a highly ranked school with a poor program in the specialty you are seeking will not deliver the training you require.
Is Any Live Training Provided? Learning and mastering esthetician techniques and abilities involves lots of practice on volunteers. Ask how much live, hands-on training is furnished in the cosmetology courses you will be attending. A number of schools have salons on site that make it possible for students to practice their developing talents on real people. If a beauty program furnishes little or no scheduled live training, but rather depends heavily on utilizing mannequins, it might not be the best alternative for acquiring your skills. Therefore try to find alternate schools that furnish this type of training.
Does the School Provide Job Assistance? As soon as a student graduates from an esthetician school, it’s important that he or she receives support in securing that initial job. Job placement programs are an important part of that process. Schools that offer aid develop relationships with Alexandria MN employers that are seeking qualified graduates available for hiring. Check that the schools you are looking at have job placement programs and inquire which salons and businesses they refer students to. In addition, ask what their job placement rates are. Higher rates not only confirm that they have extensive networks of employers, but that their programs are highly regarded as well.
Is Financial Assistance Offered? Almost all esthetician schools provide financial aid or student loan assistance for their students. Check if the schools you are investigating have a financial aid office. Talk to a counselor and identify what student loans or grants you might 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 satisfies all of your other qualifications with the exception of cost, do not eliminate it as an option until you learn what financial assistance may be offered.
Attending Esthetician School Near Alexandria MN?
Perhaps you live in the Alexandria Minnesota area, or have found a school that you will commute to or even relocate to attend. Either way, following is some interesting background information about the location of your new esthetician program.
Alexandria is a city and the county seat of Douglas County, Minnesota. First settled in 1858, it was named after brothers Alexander and William Kinkead from Maryland. The form of the name alludes to Alexandria, Egypt, a center of learning and civilization.
The village of Alexandria was incorporated February 20, 1877. Its city charter was adopted in 1908, and it was incorporated as a city in 1909. W.E. Hicks was pivotal to the early development of the town. He purchased the townsite in 1868 and established a mill, hotel, newspaper, and store. He donated property for a courthouse, jail, and two churches: Methodist and Congregational.
The population was 11,070 as of the 2010 census. Alexandria is located near Interstate 94, along Minnesota State Highways 27 and 29. Lake Carlos State Park is ten miles north of Alexandria. In 2013, Alexandria was picked as a "Top 10 Best Small Town" by the Livability website. The city is often abbreviated as "Alex" (pronounced "Alek").
Enroll in the Right Esthetics Vocational School near Alexandria MN
Choosing and enrolling in the ideal esthetician college is essential to get the necessary training to become a licensed cosmetology professional. Make sure to ask all the questions that you require so as to feel confident about your decision. Don’t forget to consolidate all of the information you receive from the cosmetology school admissions departments, prioritize what matters the most to you, and then employ that data to contrast schools. A sensible beginning in your due diligence procedure is to make sure that the school and program you choose are accredited and have outstanding reputations within the field. If you begin with that base, 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 test, you will be confident that you are prepared to launch your career as a professional esthetician in Alexandria MN.
Other Beautiful Locations in Alexandria Minnesota