Sault College: Doing more to ensure quality coifs for SaultitesFriday, October 19, 2012 by: Darren Taylor
Good news for those who love working with hair and those who want to love their hair!
The Sault College Board of Governors unanimously approved a motion to move forward with an application to the Ontario government to formally establish its Hairstylist program as an Ontario College Diploma program at their meeting Thursday.
Sault College Dean of Community Services and Interdisciplinary Studies Angelique Lemay told the Board that with the approval, the existing Sault College Hair Certificate program would be transformed into an accelerated, compressed diploma program.
Lemay told the Board the new program would consist of general education courses, to help Hair Stylist students gain a better knowledge of cultural and social understanding to assist them in their professional development.
Lemay said the proposed changes are something the Hair Stylist Advisory Committee, made up of local industry representatives, have recommended.
The program would keep its existing duration of 48 weeks of instruction, consisting of three semesters.
She added college officials are working on a name change for the program, from “Hair Stylist” to “Hair Styling.”
Lemay explained to Soo Today the hair stylist program has remained the same for a long time.
"Now we’re proposing that we move from an Ontario College Certificate credential to an Ontario College Diploma credential, and with that will be three general education courses, which will include communication courses embedded into the program, which will allow students to enhance their skills so that when they go out into the industry they will be better prepared to take on a variety of positions in hairstyling, in the business world,” she said. “What really was important for us is that the Hair Stylist advisory committee approved the proposal unanimously."
The advisory committee is made up of industry members such as salon owners, so the college's hair stylist faculty really wanted their feedback as to how they can assist their students moving into the industry.
Moving into a diploma program was something everyone agreed would only serve to increase the skill set and the professional development of the students when they graduate.
Lemay explained “after tonight’s meeting, we will submit (this proposal) to the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities for approval probably by the end of this week.”
Sault College anticipates that with Ministry approval, the Hair Styling program would be ready for launch in the fall of 2013.
Coordinator of the Sault College Hair Styling program Debbie Dunseath told Soo Today “these are exciting changes.”
“I was privileged to work on the new curriculum that was developed, so its’ implementation is something I’m looking forward to," said Dunseath. "Giving the students in hairstyling an opportunity to be in a true diploma program in a college is a step in the right direction for us.”
Dunseath said also pointed out another, less immediately apparent bonus to moving to a diploma program.
“Hairstyling students often have a different place in a college setting, so this would bring us right up to par with the rest of the students here at the college, and I think our students are ready for that," she said.
She said she believes the beauty industry is demanding that level of curriculum from program content.
"They’re really looking for that higher education in their staff, people being able to communicate effectively with their clientele, so I think the communications course and the inclusion of Sault College’s global studies will give our students cultural awareness, its going to strengthen their ability in the industry where they are serving the public.”
Dunseath said that staff, students and advisors are all glad the plan is moving forward.