Business Management

Students Master Spa Fundamentals

School owner teaches her students to add the "spa" touches to their skills. 

In 250 hours nail students at the Long Island Nail & Skin Care institute get an education like nowhere else. Not only are they fully prepared for the New York state board, they’re prepared for the real word – specifically the spa world – as well. Graduates are flooded with job offers, says school owner Dana Caruso.

Caruso, a nail tech, opened the school in a small location in 1997, at first teaching only the basic state-required curriculum. But she felt more was needed to enhance the reputation of the industry and attract quality individuals. Convinced that in-depth, hands-on spa training could give students the skills they needed to open their own say spa and build large devoted clienteles, she moved the school to a 5,000 square foot facility with classroom space, treatment rooms, and even a Vichy shower.

With the tranquil, spa-like environment students practice an array of soothing natural nail and hand treatments, complete with music and candies “Of course they are fully trained in all artificial nail techniques and nail art as well,” says Caruso To foster a professional attitude, student are required to wear lab jackets over black attire and keep their hair pulled back.

‘We place a heavy emphasis on each tech developing her own style,” says Caruso. To that end, they require each student to develop a detailed business plan for her own day spa “Everyone has to build a 3-Dmakeup of an actual salon and create a comprehensive service menu, mission statement and budget. They must also research permits, insurance and licensing requirements as well as line up distributors for the product lines they intend to use and retail, says Caruso. “They usually groan and moan at first but they do it."

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