Why did you choose a wellness career?
From early on in my life I have always been a caregiver. Helping people has always made me happy. So when I knew that a career in massage was an option I was sold on trying to make that happen for myself. After visiting Bellus I knew that it was a place that I could gain the knowledge and experience to become what I had wanted for myself for a long time.
At what age did you decide this is what you wanted to do?
I was probably 20 when I realized that becoming a massage therapist was something that I could make happen. I was in the middle of getting my Bachelors degree in Psychology and knew that finishing that was a goal of mine so I put off starting massage school. Upon graduation I had a full time job immediately so it took me a little while to put that job aside and make massage a priority once again.
How important was picking the right school for you?
Finding the correct school was extremely important. I just so happened to be lucky enough to live in a town that had a school that offered massage. That being said I wanted to make sure that this school was right for me and that I could get the education I needed to be successful.
What kind of research did you do to select the school?
After touring the campus I had a great vibe, everyone there was so positive and happy and I really felt like they wanted me to be there. Afterwards I frequently spoke on the phone with the admissions director of the school and knew from her passion that this was a school that I could really flourish in.
What was it about your first visit to Manhattan academy that made you feel this was the right school for you? What was the final reason you chose our academy?
The first thing I noticed was how helpful everyone was. It felt as if they wanted me to be there more than I wanted my to be there! And that was the best feeling I could have asked for. My main concern was that I was planning on keeping my job part time and attending school at the same time. This meant that my schedule would have to work out just so and to be honest that was one of the reasons that it took me so long to start school. Thankfully everyone was just amazing at helping me work out the correct schedule to make sure I was able to get all the education I needed and still keep my job. Not only was the admissions and scheduling staff great at working with me but my teachers were so unbelievably helpful at making sure I was never missing out on classroom things because I left early each day for work. It was such a blessing to have everyone on board with my decision to be a part time student and to really help me through the process.
Write a few paragraphs about your experience in school and what you enjoyed about your education.
My time at school really couldn't have been better. There was not a day I didn't wake up and look forward to being at school and being around my teachers and classmates. They made the biggest difference in me enjoying myself so much. The occasional massage didn't hurt either!! But the best part has to be the lasting changes they have made for me and my career. I feel with 100 percent confidence that I can make it in the industry and the entire staff at Bellus will always be there to help me out if I ever have any questions concerning my career. Being able to say that you can use your teachers as a reference to help you get a job is such an amazing feeling.
If you had any other college experience, how would you compare this college experience to any previous education?
Prior to starting at Bellus Academy I graduated from Kansas State University with a degree in Psychology. I was faced with the decision to get my masters in Psychology or finally starting massage school. I realized that I have never been one to sit in a large classroom being lectured for hours on end, it just isn't my way of learning. I am a very hands on person and after visiting Bellus I realized that it is where I belonged.
Would you recommend this academy to someone interested in beauty education? If so, what would you say to them if they asked you, "What school should I go to and why?"
Absolutely! My main reasoning would be the experience. The school not only does everything possible to get you ready for a job in the beauty and wellness industry it's the people who make the culture there. It's extremely up beat and happy and drama is discouraged and that makes for a pleasant environment to attend school in. Also the way that they prepare you for a job in the industry is fantastic. Being able to actually work with real clients after being a student for only two months was nerve wracking at first, but quickly became one of the things I was most thankful for having. I can't stress enough how great the educators and administrators are who work at Bellus. They made such a difference in the way my experience was.
Write a little about your future plans and where you want to be (future goals).
Eventually I would like to go back to college and get my masters degree and massage is going to be so helpful in doing that. I want to work part time getting my feet wet in the industry and hopefully after completing school starting my own business. Owning a spa would be a dream come true and being able to work for myself is an added bonus.
Tara Rokey, Kansas Campus Alumni | majored in Massage Therapy