Celebrity Barber demonstrates cut for NFA Main Cosmetology
Students can earn a 6th month license when they graduate from NFA Main if they meet all the criteria. The state requires 1,000-hours of approved course of study and that students pass both the New York State written and practical examinations to get a license to operate in New York State. Students enrolled in Cosmetology at NFA Main typically complete the required 1,000 hours in a course of two years.
Ms. Lastowski, a Cosmetology teacher at NFA Main scores the state board exam, but doesn’t score her own students. “I'm a product from the Newburgh School District. When I left here, I had a job! It was such a secure feeling. Then I got my education and now I'm teaching what I loved. It’s great to be able to pass this on. If my students do their work, they should be very confident that they're going to pass the state board exam.”
Jose Venacio was a special guest in the Cosmetology class this week. Mr. Venacio competes in barbering competition and has built his brand on hard work, detail in his craft, and networking. He owns a business called Gifted Hands in Warwick, has traveled the country competing and teaching barbering, and has cut hair for the Texas Rangers MLB team and Jay Z’s bodyguard.
"I consider every haircut as an illusion and I'm like a magician. I start with a line and then I work to make sure no one can see that line. I'm creating a line and then I'm going to take that line out. I'm also trying to maximize my energy. If I stay in one place all day, I don't have any of my blood flowing and that makes me too tired throughout the day.”
Jose spoke with Cosmetology students about his experience and then demonstrated his approach to cutting hair. Throughout his demonstration, he was speaking with students about his approach and his experiences. “The consultation is the most important part of the appointment. Sometimes people aren't clear and sometimes there's not much to do, but you can just tell they're in there to talk. Maybe they're lonely, maybe they just need to talk, but that's a big part of your job too.”
Mr. Venacio directed students to observe his hand placement, the type of machine or tool beingi used, and the placement and angle of tool. Throughout, he kept quizzing students as to which part of the razor was being used (front, middle, or back) or which angle they anticipated his holding his instrument.
Mr. Venacio always offered advice to the young scholars. "Your teachers can give you a solid foundation, but your success is going to come from you. Your teachers can’t do that for you. That self-motivation - that's all from within you."
“Also, make sure you save your money. I once heard that 60-80% of barber and cosmo people retire broke. This is a tough industry on your body, you can do it for a while, but you can't do it forever, so make sure you save your money.”
Mr. Venacio also described the business and entrepreneurial aspect of owning his own business.
“I make sure to develop an ambiance. Customers will pay for the total experience. I also really focus on, the quality of work that I do. What type of products I use. I'm trying to create a ‘wow’ experience for my clients. I want them to come back, but I also want them to bring their grandfather, their kids, and their friends.”
The Cosmetology students have an open clinic every Friday from 7:15am – 10:00am at NFA Main, Room 120. Call 845-563-5557 to make an appointment.