Hoover City Schools opens new RC3 academy for cosmetology and barbering

Published: Sep. 18, 2023 at 7:57 PM CDT
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HOOVER, Ala. (WBRC) - Another career path is being added for students in the Hoover city schools’ system. Hoover City Schools is offering a cosmetology and barbering academy through the Riverchase Career Connection Center (RC3) to provide students with real-world experience in the field.

The hands-on learning environment at RC3 gives students an inside look into all parts of the cosmetology industry.

Leneka Smith, one of the instructors said, “It’s like walking into my salon.”

The new state of the art facility will allow students to learn from two master stylists with a combined 40 years of experience.

“They have the opportunity to literally feel like they are going into work when come to RC3,” Smith said.

Kareemah Saadig, another instructor, said this academy is a three-year program for sophomores, juniors and seniors who will eventually start taking real clients.

“We have already had industry people reaching out saying we’ve heard you’re offering this service and that’s a way for the kids to come in here and create a pathway into the actual field,” Saadig said.

Dr. Debra Smith, Executive Director of Career and Technical Education, said they knew there was a big need for this particular academy.

“There’s a population that’s aging out of the work force so it’s so good to have people’s interest and their skills meet in order to prepare them for what’s next after secondary school,” Smith said.

So far, almost 100 students are enrolled in the course and those who complete the full three-year program will be able to take the state test and begin working very soon.

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