When we were kids the only thing better than a snow day was a field trip. We got out of the building and into the real world. We broke from routine and experienced the world of education beyond the walls of our school. When we got back we had to do some work or a project to tie it all together, to make the field trip fit into the overall curriculum.
Nothing has changed. Field trips are still fun. Field trips are still needed. Field trips are still a great way to expand the learning and make sense of the curriculum, to see how it fits into the real world.
A cosmetology school field trip is a great idea. It should be required of the program. It is never too soon in your cosmetology education to start going on field trips.
Visit hair salons and barber shops in your area. Explore a distributor store. Go on a tour at a manufacturer’s facility. Help out at a fashion show. Provide services in a nursing home. The opportunities for beauty exploration and education outside of the school building are endless.
Serious haircutting is best learned standing 1 and ½ feet over the right shoulder of a serious hair cutter.
Here are my top tips for going on a cosmetology field trip:
Fly solo or small – Go alone or in a small group of just two, max three. This will minimally impact the place you are visiting. More importantly you will be able to focus your time and your attention on the things you came to see. The hosts will be able to focus on you, too.
Have a service – Treat yourself to a service. First-hand experience from the client perspective is powerful. Once in school we do each other’s hair for FREE. Pay up and ramp up your learning.
Visit someplace new – Avoid salons you know well. Experience other aspects of the business. Visit a shop in an unfamiliar neighborhood that services clients unlike you.
Take notes and pictures – Ask permission for pictures. Bring back business cards, service menus and other materials. Begin to amass a collection of beauty business information.
Send thank you notes – Show appreciation for people’s time and energy to introduce you to our industry. Leave a positive impression of yourself and your school. Perhaps one day one of these contacts may become an employer. Open doors and wedge them open for your next visit.
Share – Upon returning to school share what you have learned with other students. If every student in your class does this you will experience every trip taken by everyone else, too.