Choosing a Cosmetology And Esthetics School

Schools in the USA

Choosing a Cosmetology And Esthetics School

Choosing a beauty school cosmetology or esthetics program can become a time-consuming choice, as there are varying types and sizes of beauty schools located across the country. At first you will need to make decisions like whether you want to pursue a degree, diploma or certificate; study on a full-time or part-time basis; what program specialization interests you; how important special features such as internship and facilities are to your decision; and the importance of cost, location, size and other factors. Once you have decided on what's important to you, you still have to find a school that fits your criteria.

Here is a step-by-step process to help you evaluate each beauty school or program:

  • Visit the website of the college, school or program department. Most institutions provide detailed information about their programs - i.e., which degrees, diplomas/certificates are offered, amount of tuition and fees, admission requirements and intake times, faculty qualifications, industry experience and accreditation and more! Often the college's or school's website will provide a "Q&A" or FAQ page which will answer the most common questions about it and its programs.

  • Visit the college or school. Campus visits allow you to learn things about the institution that might not be obvious from its marketing materials, such as facilities, campus lay-out, transportation and how it feels to be on campus. If the college or school is in your home-town or nearby, you can always take an informal tour on your own and visit the admissions or program office to ask questions. Even if the college or school nearest you is not the one you are considering, an information-gathering visit can help you get a sense of what you are comparing your other choices to.

  • Speak with an admissions counselor or advisor: they have a thorough knowledge of the curriculum and can lend a perspective to your decisions, and sometimes lead you in new directions.

  • Research other sources of information. There is a wealth of things that you can do here:

    • If you know past graduates of the college, school or program, talk with them about their experiences while a student.

    • Sample their services. Many beauty schools run spas or clinics open to the public. Want to find out how good their programs are? Then why not go get a manicure, make-up application, facial or a little trim--it's all research!

    • Check the school's accreditation, as well as the certification and licensure of the instructors.

    • Search the Internet for information on awards and achievements bestowed on the school--competitions won, faculty and student honors, etc.

    • Look up any professional associations in the field you're considering: their websites may have information about schools that help you decide which ones to put on your list--and which ones to avoid.

    • Consult Facebook and other social networking sites that may provide testimonials and other student comments on specific beauty schools and their programs.
    Then match these facts and figures against the specific beauty schools and cosmetology or esthetics programs you are evaluating.
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