The role of educator is vital. It’s they who set the standards, and it’s they whom students depend for a first-class education. That’s why we go through a meticulous process to hire only those with prodigious talent and zeal. The educator who taught the first graduating class at ARROJO cosmetology school has these qualities in abundance….
Gina is a former ARROJO studio colorist, and an award-winning cosmetology educator with an encyclopedic knowledge of the curriculum. Charmingly described by a client of the school as akin to a mother hen with her chicks, she has fierce passion for the growth and development of her students.
After moving from Michigan to Manhattan, Gina followed family footsteps (her Grandfather, at 97, was the nations eldest working barber) into the cosmetology industry.
She was an ARROJO studio colorist before her desire to teach and to share took over. It led her to Aveda Institute as a cosmetology educator, where, in three years, she drew a plethora of credits, including winning the Best Educator Competition. “At Aveda I quickly discovered teaching cosmetology was my true calling. I embraced my new occupation wholeheartedly; I became the hair cutting coach for all the teachers; I led curriculum improvement and development; and I was Chair of the Student Council. It proved perfect preparation for my role at ARROJO, where each educator is expected to be heavily involved in keeping the curriculum fresh and inspiring,” she says.
From the outside looking in, it seems the ARROJO school, with small class sizes and a boutique environment, is different from any other. But how does it look from the inside? “It’s true, it’s very different here. Everything is done to ensure the environment is the best possible place to teach and to learn. We are revolutionizing the standards of beauty school education; in this way I see ARROJO as the Ivy League of beauty schools. We set our own standards of excellence. Clearly we have great respect for State Board stipulations, and we use every moment of the seven-month course to teach all State requirements––and lots of advanced techniques besides. Our goal is to give each student the focused, disciplined technique in cut, color, and styling that is world-renowned at ARROJO studio; and, of course, provide the best preparation for students to pass their licensing exam,” she says.
There’s a great story of how Gina helped one particular student. Lacking in confidence the student was wary about trying anything too ‘advanced’. In response, Gina said that the technique she was asking the student to perform was actually very simple. And so the student went on to expertly carry out the technique, only to be told at the end it was one of the most advanced things a student could do. “I’m always looking for the most effective, efficient way to teach. Sometimes it means gentle encouragement, sometimes it means a little trickery, other times you have to push and push and push. But I’m fortunate to have the best job in the industry. I get fresh, pliable minds, ready and willing to learn. Watching them grow into tomorrow’s leaders of the hairdressing craft is my reward.”