"I always knew I was the type of person that loved to work around people, help people, and make them feel good. Although when I was younger I enjoyed playing with makeup, changing up my hair, etc., the possibility that I could do it as a career never really entered my mind. I always assumed I would end up in healthcare although when I got to college nothing ever seemed like quite the right fit. Very slowly, over time, as I visited with stylists who did my hair in the various places I lived, the wheels began to turn as I realized that each of them genuinely loved what they did. I wanted that. It took a long time for me come around and not be scared of making such a big change, but I knew deep down I couldn’t picture myself being happy doing anything else. I realized I did have an artistic side, not in drawing or music, but with people, and in making them feel beautiful, I felt fulfilled as well.
From the first day in Mrs. Foltz’s class, I knew I had made the right decision and I was going to love school, and I did. It wasn’t always easy (I had nightmares about finger waves for awhile—but what I great sense of accomplishment when I could finally whip out a full head in no time!), but the educators always had the patience of saints when things got frustrating and helped me conquer the things I struggled with.
I also really didn’t expect to have such special relationships and experiences with the clients I had while out on the floor. I got to cut little children’s hair for the first time and do elderly ladies’ roller sets. I got to do highlights on a bride just before her big day and provide comfort and a fresh look for a heartbroken widow. I got to do crazy fun peek-a-boos on young trendy girls, and a spray tan for a soon to be mother who didn’t want to look too pale while in the hospital. Those are just a handful of examples of the incredible clients that helped challenge and inspire me. There were the difficult ones too, but I was grateful to have a fantastic team of educators who had my back. They were definitely a huge support through hard days and also genuinely happy for me in my successes. I can’t imagine school without them."
Emmy Wilkey, Manhattan, KS Campus Alumni | Cosmetology Program