Black framed mirrors line the walls at the Tucson College of Beauty as students take scissors in hand and snip their clients’ hair into a new style.
“Making someone smile is what matters. I love it here,” said 25-year-old Jayes Hunter, a student currently enrolled in the college.
Tucson College of Beauty is a locally owned business that opened in 2002, and is managed by head director Rochelle Carr. Carr has been a cosmetologist for 25 years and hopes that the students who enter the program are passionate about the career.
The college is an accredited program for students who want to become cosmetologists or aestheticians.
“You hear people say that they can’t do anything else so why not do cosmetology,” said Carr. “This is a career. We want them to be here because this is what they want to do for the future.”
Every month new students are admitted into the program. Presently, there are two male students and 48 females.
Hunter is one of those male students. He has been enrolled in the school just over six months, and says he appreciates the positive work environment.
“There is a positivity within myself, which has pushed through me a lot more since being here,” he said. “It’s a different set of attitudes here and you never stop learning.”
Besides the guidance from experienced instructors, Hunter said he learns from the many females as well.
“It’s not that they’re better at it,” he said. “It’s just that they grew up with it, so at first they’ll usually know more. It’s helpful.”
Students in the cosmetology program, like Hunter, spend 37 hours from Tuesday to Saturday in a classroom or practicing hands-on for 11 months until graduation.
Clients who are treated by a student receive a discounted price.
Discounts are also given to the elderly in assisted-living homes in the area.
Carr believes in teaching her students not only hair skills, but life skills. Each month they reach out to the elderly by providing them with a free, or discounted treatment.
“Many young people don’t respect their elders,” said Carr. “So once a month we treat some of the elderly to having a free or reduced price to get their hair or nails done. I tell my students, this may be the only time they get out all week. Don’t rush and let them enjoy themselves.”
With a 100-percent success rate of graduates from Tucson College of Beauty, one can’t complain. Hairstylists in Tucson support the college as they await the arrival of a highly qualified and passionate cosmetologist to walk through their salon doors.