With the need for education and skilled training rising day by day, colleges are offering various courses but at a hefty price.
It is practically not possible for all students to get scholarships and merits.
The needs and career interests of many a student would remain unfulfilled if grants were not available.
Cosmetology is one such field that has surpassed its commercial expectations.
The need of the day is an ultra-competitive arts-styled ambiance wherein the hairstylists and makeup professionals of next generation study in co-op style education.
The small town style beauty salons may remain a mainstay on the streets of U.S.A. with its half-baked beauty school trainee experimentation. But the career oriented students of today are aiming for a training caliber that can prepare them for exciting careers and elite positions in film and fashion industry.
With only a selected few making their mark in these industries, the others still cater to the general public and are driving careers and salaries to a professional level.
The demand for these high quality stylists is continuously increasing in the general market category.
What are Cosmetology School grants?
A cosmetology school grant or scholarship can be considered a financial “gift” which the student can use to study in cosmetology school. These grants are called as gifts or scholarships as they don’t have to be paid back. The funds are generally directed to the school and any amount remaining after paying for the course fees is given to the student.
Studying cosmetology in prestigious schools, or even the regular reputable schools for that matter, will surely not come cheap. A regular course in cosmetology will cost anywhere between $6500 and $10000.
The courses include hair-dressing skills like cutting, perming, coloring, styling and roller setting as well as make-up techniques.
Students opting for cosmetology course, while still in high school or college, should discuss with their school’s adviser/counselor on the financial help they can get.
The counselors have a general list of grants and it would be more helpful to ask them for grants specific to beauty schools. If you have enrolled in any cosmetology school, they would also have counselors who can help.
Most grant applications can be completed online and the process is quite simple.
Federal financial aid can also be availed of in the form of loans; however these loans need to be repaid while grants are normally gifts and need not be repaid.
The guidelines for cosmetology courses and the accreditation for schools is regulated by states and for the financial aid to be availed the schools should meet state-specific licensing requirements.
The NACCAS – National Accrediting Commission of Cosmetology Arts & Science monitors the accredited schools. Not all states insist on high-school diploma for students aspiring for a career in cosmetology, some states also accept GED equivalent.
Some cosmetology schools insist on admission test before enrolling. The cosmetology program also varies in different schools spanning anywhere from a few months to 2 years depending on the specialization of the study.
How are the Grants awarded?
Cosmetology school grants and scholarships are most often awarded on the basis of needs and disadvantaged backgrounds. Some grants are awarded on the basis of merits. Talent also plays a very big role and the grades and potential of the student can get them a free or discounted ride in reputed cosmetology schools. Your past grades in high school and college definitely do matter.
Getting good grades in school and college increases you chances of winning the grant and scholarship. Larger technical schools will have an edge in awarding these grants while compared to specialized schools.
How to apply for cosmetology grants?
While the financial assistance in traditional colleges and universities is quite marked and easy to approach, the same cannot be said about cosmetology schools. Traditional colleges have educational speakers, high-school counselors and other resources at their disposal, students aspiring for career in cosmetology will have to carve their own way out.
- The first step is to find a cosmetology school that suits your requirements and enquire if they have their own scholarship program or participate in a state-based, federal or corporate supported grant program.
- Apply for the grant or scholarship through interactive forms and forward the same through the participating program administrator.
Most schools and aid programs accept online applications through their specific web-sites.
Types of cosmetology grants
Cosmetology grants based on merit: The applicant should be able to demonstrate talent and skills in artistic make-up, hair design and other abilities to win these grants.
Cosmetology grants based on need: The applicant should be interested in following a career in cosmetology but is restrained by financial circumstances. These grants may cover all or part of the tuition fees and provide extra to cover living costs.
Cosmetology grants based on sociology: the main aspect for obtaining this grant is to fulfill qualifying requirements like religion, race, national origin etc. applicants are filtered based on ethnicity and the final recipient gets due consideration based on other additional factors.
Institutional Cosmetology grants: These grants are school specific and the applicant should study in the same school or college to get the requisite grant.
General Cosmetology grants: This covers the other scholarship programs provided by salons or corporate, beauty schools and specific websites.
Where to apply for Cosmetology grants?
Students aspiring to study in cosmetology schools can apply for funding from The American Cosmetology Education (ACE) Grant provided by American Association of Cosmetology Schools along with corporate sponsors. Getting a grant from here will depend on:
- school you want to attend and their participation in this grant
- the status of your interview and application in the chosen school
- and your financial status
Since most cosmetology programs may be booked you may have a waiting period especially if you are seeking grant subsidies.
Some of the grants awarded through the ACE is given below
Sport Clips Scholarship
Multiple scholarships of $1000 is awarded to students from different cosmetology schools who are members of the AACS. The scholarship is limited to one recipient from each school and is chosen by a selection committee comprising of Sport Clips Area Developers, SCI Support and Team Leaders. The deadline to receive this application is January 31st of each year and the applications can be submitted online too.
Dream Shears/Trade Essentials Scholarship
Scholarships of $500 is awarded to 10 students from participating AACS schools
Westmore Academy of Cosmetic Arts Makeup Scholarship
This is provided for post-graduate students who want to advance their career as makeup artists.
The course spans a period of 6 weeks and is designed to prepare the students for a career in high fashion, Haute Couture, commercial photography and Avant-Garde makeup.
Under the scholarship program, six grants of $1100 each is awarded to eligible post graduate students doing their Master Makeup course of 6 weeks. Another scholarship of $1300 is also awarded to six students doing their course in makeup for motion pictures, television, characters and effects the duration of which is 12 weeks.
Six grants of $500 each is awarded through the Schaeffer Family foundation to students selected through essay writing and 1 industry recommendation.
Pat Goins Memorial Scholarship
Scholarships of $1000 each is awarded to 3 students from participating cosmetology schools. Aimed at meeting the tuition and education fees, the scholarship amount is paid in favor of the school on the selected student’s behalf.
AHBAI Scholarship – AHBAI
AHBAI stands for American Health and Beauty Aids Institute and issues scholarships under the Fred Luster Sr. Education Foundation This is a Chicago based foundation.
There are many cosmetology schools that provide their own grant. Some of these are:
Minnesota’s Model College of Hair Design
The College has high-quality programs in cosmetology with on-campus residence. The grants are awarded regularly and can be applied for through their online process.
Oregon Student Assistance Commission
Residents of Oregon State can benefit vastly from this state-specific grant. Grants of $600 are awarded to students who are enrolled in approved cosmetology programs for education and training for a minimum period of 9 months.
Vernon’s Kansas School of Cosmetology
Also offers various grant based programs based on the individual students’ past academic record and financial status. The college has some really competitive programs in cosmetology including part-time and full-time programs. Full time cosmetology programs here need almost a year for completion.
John Pelloni Memorial Scholarship
This is available for students studying in California’s Cerritos College. Eligible students get an award of $400.
Maureen Baldwin Cosmetology Scholarship
This available to students studying cosmetology in Highland Community College of Illinois. Eligibility is based on the student’s financial condition and academic performance.
Sally Beauty Supply Scholarships
Sponsored by the popular beauty store chain Sally Stores in partnership with National Cosmetology Association. Grants of $1000 are offered in scholarships each year to 10 students in 3 different categories. 5 scholarships of $1000 each is awarded to High school graduates (below 26 years), 3 grants of $1000 each for NCA members and the 3rd is for the children / grandchildren of NCA members seeking advanced education in cosmetology.
Walla Wall Community College, Washington
This college has their own cosmetology program and provides funding for the same
Other Available Programs
Joe Francis Hair-Care Scholarship Foundation
Awards grants of $1000 each for 19 students every year for cosmetology programs
Alice Madden Barton Cosmetology Scholarship Program
This is a program that is awarded twice a year for students pursuing cosmetology or barbering career. It is given in January and July and can be availed in any school. The grant is supported by Great Clips
NCEA Esthetician Scholarship
A scholarship of $1000 is awarded to esthetician students four times a year. The application can be submitted online along with an essay describing the applicant’s interest in cosmetology and financial need.
The criteria for winning the scholarship are enrollment in esthetician only training program, 80% attendance and 80% grade average. The deadline for submitting the application for each quarter is March 1st, June 1st, September 1st and December 1st.
“Education Rocks” Scholarship
A scholarship amount of $250 is awarded to the winning candidate
Massage Magazine Scholarship Program
This is given to five students studying for their massage therapy license to the tune of $1000 each.
There are institutes that give a skin-deep value to cosmetology and teach their students the chemistry and biology of skin and hair care. These institutes too provide grants that are supported by corporate giants.
A classical example of this is the Cosmetology program at Southern Westchester. Toyota International has granted a huge sum to this school to put up a technologically updated laboratory.
This lab which was installed with a investment of $10000 helps students study the art of cosmetology at a very scientific level with the skin types being studied at microscopic levels and research supported by experiments in chemistry. Students studying at this school can avail grants and discounts from Toyota to complete their courses.
One other option to finance your cosmetology education is federal financing. There are various types of federal financing available through accredited cosmetology schools.
Federal Pell Grant
Pell Grant can be used as a foundation for financial assistance and supplemented by other sources. Under this grant money is paid out annually, the amount disbursed is based on various aspects of the student’s education including financial situation. Amounts sanctioned under Pell Grants need not be repaid.
FSEOG – Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant
Sanctioning of this grant is based solely on availability of funds and the winning students don’t need to repay the grant. Funds are distributed by the Department of Education to schools participating in the above program and students can apply for the same through their respective schools.
To be eligible for this grant, the students should have extreme financial need and other monetary assistance the student receives will also be considered.
FSL – Federal Stafford Loan
This was earlier issued as Guaranteed Student Loan. This is a low interest loan that students can avail through external lending institutions and agencies with a guaranteed repayment by the government. Stafford Loans come in two forms – subsidized and unsubsidized. Under the subsidized scheme, the interest on the loan availed is paid by the government while the student is still in school and for 6 months after course completion.
FPLUS – Federal Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students
This is an alternative loan and aims at helping parents provide for the educational expense of their children. This fund is aimed at helping parents secure themselves against borrowing on their assets and properties.
People who have been in the military can avail their G.I. Bill to fund their cosmetology education. This bill is designed to meet the expenses of vocational and education training. However these grants are school and state specific and cannot be availed at all places.
What you do need to be careful is about the grant you are applying for. Some grants need to be paid back immediately (after the completion of your course) while some are given as gifts and don’t need to be repaid. Apart from grants and scholarships, the cosmetology industry is also brimming with sponsorships, contests and similar financial-aid opportunities mostly supported by corporate companies that can be availed of with proper planning, research and timely application.
The other thing you will need to remember is these grants and scholarships, as many as you win, will still not be able to pay off all the expenses of your tuition fees, food and lodging expenses.
After due consideration of the amounts you have won through grants, you may need to apply for loans from other sources. Your school counselor will be able to help you in this regard and guide you to low interest loans with flexible repayment terms. Some good examples of these are loans from Salle Mae and the Student Loan option from Citibank Student Loan Division.
These lending institutions give a grace period of up to six months after completion to start the loan repayment program.
However these loans should only be a last option after all the grants and federal loan options have been exhausted.
After due completion of a course in cosmetology, there are various places the student can be employed in. The most lucrative field for cosmetologists is undoubtedly the fashion and film industry.
Apart from this cosmetologists depending on the course they have specialized can be employed as hair-dresser and hair-stylist, barbers, skin care specialists, manicurists and pedicurists, shampooers etc. Advanced courses in cosmetology help you get employed as aroma therapist, cosmetician, makeup artist, massage therapist, film and theatre hair specialist as well as a career in Electrology.
You can find a job almost as soon as you are out of the cosmetology school, and some schools even have placement options. If you are really good at your work, you can even get a corporate to finance your business proposition with specific product and branding support.