Mosaic, a commercial salon based at Redcar & Cleveland College, enables beauty therapy and hairdressing students to learn their trade under the watch of experienced tutors.
Open to the public, the salon allows students to trade in the same way a business would and hundreds of customers have passed through its doors since its launch in 2013.
In the last year alone, 26 of Mosaic graduates have either found employment or started their own business after completing their studies. Of the 20 beauty therapy students who found work, three are plying the trade in five-star hotels and one is working on board a luxury cruise ship. Other beauty therapy and hairdressing students are employed in Teesside salons or have launched their own ventures.
Twenty year-old Abbie Smith from Redcar is currently the youngest person to start her own business at Mosaic. The former Level 3 beauty therapy student, who completed her course in May 2015, now offers treatments including manicures, massages, facials and waxing within the salon.
She said: “I set up on my own in November 2015 after completing two extra nail courses alongside my Level 3 in Beauty Therapy.
“I’m really grateful that I was given the opportunity to launch my venture at Mosaic as I’ve always wanted to run my own business. I’m still building up my client base and I’ve been getting fantastic support from my former tutors who have always encouraged me to aim high.
“Age is just a number and I’d encourage anybody looking to start their own business to have a go. The first year will be the hardest as you build your client base but it will be worth it in the end!”
Debbie Wilson, beauty therapy course leader at Redcar & Cleveland College, said: “Abbie was always a model student and I’m thrilled she decided to set up within Mosaic.
“She fits in so well with the rest of the team and it’s great to see her build her client base and customer service skills.
“I’m proud that we’ve managed to help so many of our former students gain employment or launch their own business. It’s a significant milestone at Mosaic and one that we’ll look to build on in the future.”
For further information on Redcar & Cleveland College, please call 01642 473 132 or visit http://www.cleveland.ac.uk.