School Matters: Highlighting CTE Cosmetology Program

February is Career and Technical Education (CTE) Month! 

The Association for Career & Technical Education (ACTE) states that “CTE Month is a public awareness campaign that takes place each February to celebrate the value of CTE and the achievements and accomplishments of CTE programs across the country.”

In Victoria ISD, the CTE Department works with business, industry, and higher education to combine academics, workplace knowledge, and the essential skills necessary to prepare the future workforce to succeed in an ever-changing global economy. We are very proud to offer opportunities for students to prepare for their “&” after high school through CTE. 

The Cosmetology program at Victoria ISD Career and Technology Institute (CTI) prepares students to earn their Cosmetology Operators License while still in high school. Students graduate with their high school diploma and their license allowing them to enter the workforce the Monday after graduation. Taking the equivalent course of study after high school can cost up to twenty thousand dollars.  

VISD CTE Cosmetology students begin by learning about product knowledge, effective communication, sanitation, hair, skin, and nail care. Students in Cosmetology I work on a variety of skills including chemical reformation, artistry of hair, and manicures. Cosmetology II provides students with the opportunity to practice advanced hair design and cutting, hair coloring techniques, and salon development. Students gain real-world experience on mannequins and live models in a cosmetology lab using equipment equal to that found in a modern salon. 

“The Cosmetology program has taught me many different skills and abilities that I did not know before about hair,” said West High School Senior Melanie Villareal. “I have learned techniques for hair, skin, and nails that helped give me confidence on these aspects. I would recommend [CTE] Cosmetology to anyone who is interested in beauty and is determined to learn and improve and prepare for a possible career in this field.” 

 Additionally, they learn how to operate and run their own businesses. There are many options available to students that graduate from our Cosmetology program, from working for a franchise all the way to working for themselves. “Cosmetology is a great way to enhance your communication and business skills. I am very blessed to have this opportunity,” said Alessandra Hernandez, Victoria East High School Senior. 

Cosmetology programs can be the reason students find their “&”. Students in CTE programs are 25 percent more likely to graduate from high school compared to those who aren’t in a concentrated CTE program, according to research by Shaun Dougherty, now an associate professor of public policy and education at Vanderbilt University. 

 “I feel the program has taught me skills beyond just cosmetology and helped prepare me for the future,” said Mallory Ozuna, East High School Senior. 

The ACTE recognizes February as CTE Month, in VISD, however, we celebrate CTE teachers and students all year long.

Dena Justice is the CTE Director for VISD.