Nails 101: A Student Blog

Meet LaTia

by NAILS Magazine | September 28, 2011

Editor’s note: Marti is still blogging about her school experience, but since she’s going to be finishing up school in the next month or so, we wanted to get our next student blogger started now. Look for both of their posts each week to see what nail school is like for them.

My name is LaTia Wilson, and I am a 33-year-old native of the Washington DC Metro area. By day, I am a sign language interpreter coordinator, and by night (well… weekend) a makeup artist. I have always been an artsy person who longed for an outlet — singing from practically the moment I was born, which then led to studying vocal performance in college. During my high school years, I became fascinated with hair, nails, and makeup, and would get my nails done every two weeks like clockwork, complete with a full set of acrylic and airbrush designs on every nail! In college, I began to play around with my own nail art, and would practice on as many friends as possible.

After college, I entered the working world and held a variety of positions including: music teacher, camp director, conference support, and full-time makeup artist. But all the while, I held on to my dreams of becoming a nail tech. Until recently, it just hadn’t been possible for varying reasons for me to attend school. Either the schedules didn’t fit, or the school was too far away, or the schools that used to offer nail tech programs no longer did so.

So you can imagine how elated I was to finally discover a program that worked with my schedule, AND is located close to my home! Aesthetics Institute of Cosmetology is where I’ll be working hard and having fun! The program is Tuesday and Thursday evenings, 5 pm-9 pm, and 8 hours on Saturdays. The beauty (no pun intended) of the school is that it is open 7 days per week, which means that if something comes up where I’m not able to make 8 hours on a Saturday (as a makeup artist, I do lots of weddings on Saturdays), I can make up the time on Sunday or any other opportunity I have during the week. I think that’s a huge bonus, especially for me.

The state of Maryland requires 250 hours, so I will be plugging away through early January 2012 (about 16 weeks). My short-term goal is to complete my program and be licensed by February, working as a nail tech part-time until my clientele is built up, then go to full-time. My long-term goal is to not only be a successful nail tech “behind the table”, but to also be an educator. I think many of the difficulties I faced in trying to find a school/program was due to a lack of qualified teachers, and I would love to help fill that gap.

I’m so excited to soak up all of the knowledge I can and to travel this path. Of course there will be days when I think, “Why did I do this again…?”, but overall I’m so excited to see where this path takes me. I hope you’ll join me on my journey!

— LaTia Wilson

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