Stimulus Aid for Beauty Schools, Cosmetology Students

Stimulus Aid for Beauty Schools, Cosmetology Students
Susan Dutca-Lovell

A month ago, it may have felt that the only thing in deficit at the store were toilet paper rolls. Now, as people's routine grooming schedules have been put on hold, many are taking matters into their own hands by becoming at-home stylists. With clippers being one of the newer hot items, it brings a newfound appreciation and begs the question: How has the coronavirus impacted beauty schools and its cosmetology students? Fortunately, they're all in for a financial makeover.

Of the $12 billion in higher education stimulus dollars provided via the CARES Act, beauty schools are slated to receive $164 million from Congress in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Half of the funds will go to students in the form of emergency grants.

The stimulus dollars will be allocated to both nonprofit and for-profit institutions as well as a variety of accredited beauty academies and institutes nation-wide. While some institutions will receive aid on the lower end of $68,240, larger chains such as the for-profit John Paul Mitchell Systems will receive upwards $26 million in aid.

How exactly are students conducting their beauty practicum - painting nails, cutting and coloring hair, or applying makeup - during a time in which you must maintain a minimum 6 feet distance from everyone? Like other higher education institutions at this time, cosmetology schools have moved to online learning. Instead of working directly with mannequins, they're learning the theory behind styling hair and doing makeup. Students are virtually learning the differences between a 90-degree haircut and a 180-degree haircut, and when to use a fine-tooth comb or wide-tooth comb. In an effort to maintain some normalcy, certain administrators have considered the option of working from behind Plexiglas - such as those seen at many grocery store checkouts. Unfortunately, that would be a large expenditure for many beauty schools.

Today, as people look in the mirror and swipe away the overgrown strands of hair that fall across their faces, perhaps there's a realization of the value in the basic and essential services provided by beauticians. Fortunately, there'll be stimulus dollars that will go towards supporting these careers; overall, "the $160 million going to beauty schools is a relatively small amount, making up about 9 percent of the $1.1 billion in higher education stimulus funds..." according to Inside Higher Ed. If you are a student pursuing a career in the beauty industry, don't forget to check out these cosmetology scholarships to help pay for your beauty school education.

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