There was a lump in my throat walking up to the Empire Beuaty School in Whitehall. Kelley, the Career Planning Specialist, (I mention her in another post. Read it here) greeted me by name with a warm smile. Empire has done so much to make me feel comfortable attending beauty school. The nervousness instantly let up.
I signed in and waited on the bench with my new classmates. Once everyone had arrived, we went into a classroom that had been set up for us with starter folders. The starter folders explained what we could expect now that we were officially beauty students. A student competition video played on the SmartBoard when we walked in, too. I’m really impressed with the SmartBoards Empire uses … and it’s only my first day.
At the beginning of the presentation we all became “officially enrolled.” This implies we were entered in the hand punch system. It’s kind of like a time clock each student will punch in and out of when attending class. It’s our responsibility to punch in and out to keep track of our beauty school hours. If we forget to punch in our out, our instructors aren’t sure how many course hours we’ve completed. We wouldn’t get credit for all those hours we attended class.
Like with all things Empire, the message was simple but important; we control our own fate. I would need to show the instructors how dedicated I was to learning to become a salon professional. In turn, they would give me the opportunity to change my life. My beauty school experience was really what I would make of it with my hard work and dedication. Empire would simply support me to achieving my goals.
The instructors went on to explain that attendance is a big portion of your grade. A student can get 100s on all of their tests and practicals but if there’s no record of class attendance, you could fail a course. Sheesh, I better not forget to punch in. All three, attendance, tests and practicals, are averaged together to provide my grade in the class. That’s good motivation to get to school early and never miss a day of class. I mean, who wants to lose points just because they don’t feel like going to class.
After we were official beauty school students, we met the teachers. Each one had their own sections to discuss with us like parking, dress code, cell phone use, financial aid information, events at our school, what Monday (our first classroom day) would be like, etc. There’s so much information about how Empire interacts with the community, too. I’m glad they laid it all out so I wouldn’t be confused.
The instructors were all very nice. They gave some background on themselves and what they taught at Empire. Who knows, maybe I’ll want to be a beauty instructor at Empire one day. It was so interesting to learn where my teachers had gained their experience. A lot of them had owned successful salons. A few were Empire graduates that wanted to give back to students. Others worked in exciting careers, like as celebrity stylists and very upscale beauty salons. They were all so dedicated to making sure I learned from them. It’s so inspiring.
Finally, we watched a brief video on financial aid. Luckily, I had Kelley to support me through my FAFSA program. Monday starts it all – I can’t wait! Check out these pictures, for now, of my student beauty supply kit.