Where Are They Now? 5 Questions for MSC Graduate Brooke Reardon

Written by Mindy Meyer, career services coordinator 

Minnesota School of Cosmetology’s (MSC) primary mission is to produce employable graduates into the cosmetology industry. Since we are a career college, our number one goal is for all graduates to be successful in their field!

We were happy to interview our MSC-Woodbury alumni Brooke Reardon who graduated in 2012 and works at Regis Salon. We love hearing graduate success stories!

Describe your career path before graduation from MSC?

I was in my senior year of high school when I decided to attend MSC. I had been accepted to a few different colleges but wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with my life. I guess you could say cosmetology chose me!

Why did you choose to attend MSC?

I chose MSC because of the people that I met while I was touring. My admissions representative and the instructors seemed like great people with an excitement and passion for the industry. It was also a smaller campus, so the training was more individualized than other schools. MSC was also one of the more affordable schools I was looking at.

How did your education enhance or change your current career path?

MSC taught me the basic knowledge I needed to know before I got out into the field. The instructors really “hammered home” color theory for me, which I am extremely grateful for. Knowledge is key. The more knowledge you possess, the more you can rightfully raise your prices in the salon. You have to be able to grow your skills along with the industry.

What piece of advice would you give to students considering a career in cosmetology?

Ask to go and observe for a day. When I was considering cosmetology school, I asked to sit in on a class that was being held. That class made my decision pretty simple. A good way to learn something is to just jump right in and experience it! You have to be willing to go with the flow and learn on the fly in this business.

What do you enjoy most about the cosmetology industry?

What I enjoy most in this business are the people I get to work with, both stylists and clients alike. There isn’t a day that goes by where I’m not laughing or smiling because of the people that have been brought into my life. Not only am I changing their life with a new style or color, but sometimes they’re changing mine. I also enjoy not doing the same thing every day. There’s always a new client, a new cut or a new color formulation. Each day brings a new and exciting challenge. I love my career more and more as time passes!

Faculty Spotlight: Angie Durkee

One of the many reasons that Minnesota School of Cosmetology (MSC) stands out from the rest is the amazing instructors we have on campus. We’ll introduce you to one of them here. Angie Durkee teaches a wide variety of courses at MSC-Plymouth, and we thought you should get to know her. 

What made you decide to start a career in the cosmetology industry?

I chose cosmetology because a cousin of mine took me under her wing and taught me how to do my makeup and style my hair. It really boosted my low self-esteem, and I wanted to be able to help others feel good about themselves, like she had helped me feel good about myself!

Salon Manger Angie Durkee
What was your career path before teaching at the Minnesota School of Cosmetology?

I worked the first 10 years out of cosmetology school behind the chair for City Looks, formally The Barbers Hairstyling for Men and Women. After that I catered with my husband for a little while, but eventually got back into hair with Great Clips. I’ve worked at Beauty Supply and that is what opened the doors for me to get my instructor’s license.

Why did you choose to teach at MSC?

I was back in the salon after finishing my first teaching position, and I realized I wasn’t happy being in the salon, and that teaching was my passion. One afternoon I was driving around and stopped by the school. I noticed my Basics instructor teaching on the clinic floor, and knew I had come full circle and was finally home. I still keep in touch with Ms. Jeannine to this day.

Describe your role as an educator.

As MSC’s school manager, I am responsible for overseeing the team of educators as well as ensuring the students are receiving the best education and having fun while learning. I have been in the salon manager role for a little over five years and have loved every minute of every day. I get to get up, come to work and see growth and learning progress for each and every student at MSC-Plymouth.

What’s your favorite part about being an instructor at MSC?

My favorite part of instructing is getting to be there when the students have their “ah-ha” moments. There’s nothing like watching your students understand what you’ve been asking them to do all this time.

What piece of advice would you give to students considering a career in cosmetology?

Don’t let others make your choices for you, if you want it, go for it! I pushed myself when I didn’t want to and when I couldn’t push myself any further, others were there to help me through the rough spots. Don’t give up, it’s so worth it in the end! I’ve never worked a day in my life, because I love what I do.

What’s your area of expertise or your favorite technique to teach?

I love cutting hair, and hair color is a fun and exciting avenue, too. When I had my “ah-ha” moment, I colored everyone in sight.

This is a great industry. I guarantee you won’t ever be bored!

Minnesota School of Cosmetology Partners with Great Clips to Support Children’s Hospital

College to donate proceeds from Cut-a-thon to hospital’s School Re-entry Program

MINNEAPOLIS (Sept. 24, 2014) – Minnesota School of Cosmetology will partner with Great Clips for its annual Cut-a-thon to offer donation haircuts Sept. 26-27 at its Woodbury and Plymouth campuses. All proceeds from haircuts on those days will be donated to the School Re-entry Program at Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota. The program, which is funded by Great Clips, was established in 1983 and helps children and teens with challenging medical problems address issues of returning to school. Specialists help decrease classmates’ fears, model appropriate, respectful language to describe a health problem, and help decrease the likelihood of rumors or teasing.

What: Minnesota School of Cosmetology raises money for Children’s Hospital

When: Friday, Sept. 26, 2014
               9:30 a.m. – 4:15 p.m.

Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014
               8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Where: Minnesota School of Cosmetology-Woodbury campus
1750 Weir Drive
Suite 3
Woodbury, MN 55125

Minnesota School of Cosmetology-Plymouth campus
1425 County Road 101 North
Plymouth, MN 55447

For media inquiries contact Naomi McDonald, Director of Communications at 651-332-8269 or nmdonald@msbcollege.edu.


The Minnesota School of Cosmetology (MSC) provides hands-on training for careers in beauty and fashion. Working under the direct supervision of licensed instructors, students apply their skill and talent—providing high-quality, affordable services to the public. MSC has two locations: Woodbury (651-287-2180) or Plymouth (763-404-4800). MSC is part of the Globe network, a premier, family-managed system of career colleges, universities and training centers based in Woodbury, Minn. These specialty skills colleges prepare work-ready professionals for successful careers in a wide range of high-demand fields. Through its mission, We Care, the organization integrates hands-on and career-focused education with service- and applied-learning experiences that expose students to their communities and real-world situations. For more information about Minnesota School of Cosmetology go to www.msccollege.edu.

What You Need to Know as a Minnesota School of Cosmetology Student

If you’ve enrolled at the Minnesota School of Cosmetology, this is an exciting time for you! And there are plenty of things to know as you prepare for school.What You Need to Know as a Minnesota School of Cosmetology Student

The first thing you can expect and anticipate is a welcoming environment. The MSC community, including students, instructors and staff, get excited to see other creative and motivated people on campus.

So, let’s rundown what we have in store for you.  


Your first experience as a new student will be New Student Orientation.

The overall goal of New Student Orientation is to take care of the details as much as possible so you will be more comfortable and ready for classes on your first day.

During the session, you will:

  • Meet fellow classmates
  • Meet MSC instructors and staff
  • Meet the academic support team

These are the people you will be spending most of your time with while completing your program. We’re here to encourage and help each other so it’s a great opportunity to get know each other.

          Related: What to Do Between Now and Your First Day at MSC


Other important topics that we’ll cover to help you be successful include:

  • Student policies and procedures
  • Positive learning models and practices
  • Acquainting you with technology based learning tools
  • Establishing a foundation for development of professional and academic experiences

All departments are staffed that day so you can:

  • Review your class schedules
  • Make tuition payments (if necessary)
  • Complete and submit final forms for your academic file
  • Get fitted for your smock, which is part of your daily attire
  • Get your picture taken for your student ID card

Did you know that your family and friends are invited to New Student Orientation? So bring them along. We allow enough time for you to show them around your What You Need to Know as a Minnesota School of Cosmetology Studentcampus.

Be sure to mark New Student Orientation on your calendar and make plans to attend.

Your First Day at MSC

On your first day of class, we will meet you in the front lobby and welcome you to MSC. There you will find a representative ready to greet you and provide you with:

  • Your ID card
  • Help locating classrooms if you need it
  • A breakfast treat
  • A heartwarming smile!

The first thing you’ll get to do is open your cosmetology kit that will supply you with everything you need to be successful at MSC!

After opening your kit you’ll receive your iPad® and we’ll provide hands-on training for getting everything set up and downloaded. Now that you have your iPad® in hand, you are ready to go to your first class.

Your First Week at MSC

During the first week of classes you will meet instructors and review the course outline so you know how to plan for assignments.

At this time we encourage you to meet other students in your class, arrange times to meet and study, or just hang out together for lunch.

You’ll find other students who share similar interests and perspectives. Jump in and start networking with fellow students; most likely you’ll be collaborating on projects and assignments inside and outside of the classroom.

If you have questions, admissions representatives, front desk officials or any MSC staff member are here to help.

Congratulations! You are now part of the MSC community and we’re glad you joined us!



*Apple, the Apple logo, iPad, Mac, MacBook, and MacBook Air are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. iBookstore is a service mark of Apple Inc. Programs may vary by campus. 

What to Do Between Enrollment and Your First Day at Minnesota School of Cosmetology

If you’ve enrolled at Minnesota School of Cosmetology (MSC), you might have a few days or a few weeks before your first day.

Either way, there are plenty of things you can do to better prepare yourself for success.

Here, we’ll run down a few opportunities you have to get ready for cosmetology school and hit the ground running!

Research the Industry

Before you get started at MSC, it makes sense to do some industry research.

Check out fashion magazines for the latest trends. Read up on hair, nail and skin techniques. Search for beauty blogs on the internet. “Like” your favorite industry magazines on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram. Check out the MSC blog.

Research can give you a leg up before you even begin your classes, so that you will feel more prepared for your coursework. This simple step can give you a better grasp of the beauty industry.

Hit the Salon

Speaking of salons, the next time you go in for a manicure, a haircut or a facial treatment, keep a close eye on how they do things. You might be able to pick up on tips that will help you during your time at MSC.

In addition to seeing how they cut, color and style hair, perform manicures and pedicures, provide spa treatments such as facials, you should take note of the atmosphere and how they treat their customers. The work of a cosmetologist involves more than the beauty techniques themselves—it’s also about customer service and creating a warm and inviting atmosphere.

You are probably planning to hit the salon anyway. Make it a productive trip while you’re at it.

Talk to Friends

Your friends can be a great resource for what’s trendy in the world of beauty today.

They can also share with you why they stick with their stylist, go to a certain salon or opt for a professional manicure twice a month.

Maybe you can practice on your friends and find out your strengths and weaknesses before you begin your formal training.

You are passionate about cosmetology, so it’s probably something you’re thinking about often. Bounce ideas off your friends and try to broaden your knowledge base (and maybe even pick up future customers).

Research Career Possibilities

Graduation might be a ways away, but you can begin looking into your career possibilities today.

Look for openings on major career websites and chat with your stylist about the work. Another good resource is the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, which runs Minnesota School of Cosmetology, getting ready, first day, what to do, beauty schooldown many aspects of the cosmetology profession, including:

  • What they do
  • The work environment
  • Job outlook
  • Pay
  • Job growth
  • Similar occupations

The more you know before you earn your diploma, the better prepared you will be once you graduate.

Check Out the City

Since you will be spending plenty of time at school, you will want to become familiar with the city.

Whether you’re attending the Woodbury or Plymouth campus, you should take some time to check out the restaurants, stores and attractions in town. You might want to find a quiet coffee shop where you can study, or figure out a good place to shop after class.

Another benefit of looking around town is figuring out the best way to get to school. You might have to take the bus sometimes or find alternate routes to avoid traffic

By familiarizing yourself with the city, you’ll feel more comfortable with your surroundings and be more able to focus your attention on class.

Plan Your Work; Work Your Plan

Before you start cosmetology school, you need to make arrangements for the major parts of your life:Minnesota School of Cosmetology, getting ready, first day, what to do, beauty school

  • Will you need daycare?
  • What’s your plan for saving money?
  • Do you plan on finding out if you qualify for financial aid?
  • Do you have transportation?
  • How will you arrange your study time?

These are big aspects of your time in cosmetology school that you will need to figure out. Once you have a plan in place, continue to refine it as the excitement for your first day at MSC builds.

If you have a handle on the big picture, the details will fall into place that much easier and you will be able to concentrate on pursuing your passion at MSC!

You have what it takes. Now it’s time to put your plan into action

Woodbury Royal Family Visits MSC

During the Woodbury Days summer festival, Minnesota School of Cosmetology (MSC) students were privileged to perform hairstyles for members of Woodbury Ambassadors Royal Family prior to the coronation. To form the perfect updo hair styles, the cosmetology students created cascades of curls and stylish braids, and neatly positioned the hair with bobby pins.

According to the Woodbury Days website, The mission of the Ambassadors is to make a difference in the community in which they live, encouraging the development and education of young women, and relationships with all ages. Along with the Woodbury Days Council, they represent a community of dedicated people striving to make the city a more friendly and wonderful place to live.”

Terri Steigauf, Woodbury ambassador coordinator, thanked the MSC students by saying, “The girls loved their hair! Once again your students did a wonderful job. Thank you so much for supporting our girls and the Ambassador program.”

5 Things You Need to Know About Life at Cosmetology School

You’re probably getting excited to begin your time at Minnesota School of Cosmetology (MSC). It’s a big step in your journey toward a career in the beauty industry.Cosmetology school, Minnesota School, Beauty School, things you need to know, life

Sure, you’ll learn how to cut, color and style hair, do manicures and pedicures, provide spa treatments and much, much more! But as you prepare for your first day at MSC, there are a few things you should know about life at cosmetology school.

1. Friends are important

A very exciting part of cosmetology school is making new friends. You’ll be working together in the salon studio, experiencing the same things and learning together.

Friendships are vital. In addition to making class more fun, your school friends can help you in a number of ways.

First off, you will have someone to study with as well as exchange technical skills with.

Second, you will develop connections that could prove valuable after graduation. Remember, networking doesn’t begin after you earn your diploma.

Networking includes your instructors, too. They have plenty of experience in the field and can become resources as you begin your job hunt.

Be sure to reach out on your first day.

2. Student discounts

Yes! As a student at MSC, you can get new hairstyles, gel nails and skin treatments for a fraction of the cost you would normally pay at a salon.

It’s a nice perk. Plus, you’ll have the chance to try out new or retro styles, see how your fellow students are learning and treat yourself to the spa experience.

3. Learn to lean on your support team

Cosmetology school is kind of a big deal. You’ll be focused on your work, and that means you might need some help elsewhere.Cosmetology school, Minnesota School, Beauty School, things you need to know, life

You have to learn to lean on your support network. That means your friends (see above), but also your family and MSC staff.

Before you begin your first day, you may need to look into daycare or find alternative ways to get to school. Reach out to people—most will be happy to help you as you work toward your diploma.

At MSC, you can count on your instructors being supportive, and if you’re having trouble in class, there are tutors available.

If you ever feel overwhelmed, remember your support team. They are there to help you reach your goals.

4. Always be preparing for your career

This is what cosmetology school is all about, right?

As you learn the techniques of the trade, you might find yourself gravitating toward one particular aspect of the cosmetology world. You can use your classes to figure out what interests you and where you see yourself after graduation.

MSC will give you plenty of chances to see what your future has in store. We often host career fairs where you’ll be able to interact with industry pros and get insider tips about the business.

As you continue your journey at MSC, you should take advantage of our career services department, which will help you with your resume, cover letters and interviewing, as well as locating job openings. These are ongoing things MSC does to assist students, even after they graduate or go through a transition period later in life.

Cosmetology school is about learning, but it’s also about preparing you for life after graduation. Keep your eyes on the prize!

5. Success: It’s up to you

At the end of the day, you’ll get out of cosmetology school what you put into it.

You should certainly take advantage of the resources available to you, and utilize your friends and family for support. But really, your success depends on you.

It’s time to focus on your training and future career. It’s time to go to class and work hard. It’s time to start a new and exciting chapter in your life.

Channel your passion for beauty into a cosmetology diploma. Let’s go! 

5 Reasons to Check Out Minnesota School of Cosmetology

Looking for a fun and exciting place to help you take your career to new places?Minnesota School of Cosmetology, beauty school, reasons, why, check out

Check out Minnesota School of Cosmetology, which has a long tradition of giving students the training they need to land a job in the beauty industry. We offer a comprehensive program in which you will be trained in the areas of hair, skin, nails and makeup.

With convenient locations in Woodbury and Plymouth, MSC can give you the skills you need to help people look and feel their best! Plus, students can complete the program in as few as 10 months with full-time, year-round enrollment.

Here are five reasons why you should consider MSC.

1. Practice What You’re Learning

During your classes at MSC, you’ll get hands-on training that will help prepare you for work in the beauty industry.

Our program prepares students for entry-level careers as stylists, hair color technicians, estheticians and more.

MSC also offers services for actual clients, giving students the chance to practice their skills and get real-time feedback from customers.

2. Technological Edge

As part of MSC’s program, each student receives an iPad®, making us the first cosmetology school in Minnesota to incorporate the tablet into the curriculum. Our Educational User Experience Scholarship was created to help full-time students fund the cost of the tablet.

The iPad allows students to utilize cosmetology-specific applications and learn how the devices can be used in the industry. With the iPad, MSC students can:

  • Record and replay lessons
  • Share possible hairstyles, makeup choices, nail designs, etc., with clients before beginningMinnesota School of Cosmetology, beauty school, reasons, why, check out
  • Go over “virtual makeovers”
  • Capture images for your portfolio
  • Prepare for state boards
  • Study on the go

The tablet eliminates the need for textbooks and paper handouts, enhances the salon experience for guests, and helps students become familiar with the latest technology.

“We believe the iPad and its engaging content will improve learning, ignite creativity and add to the overall effectiveness of the cosmetology teaching and learning processes,” says Jill Hocking, campus director at MSC’s Woodbury campus.

3. Prepare for Variety

No matter what area of the beauty industry excites you, MSC has you covered.

Our students say the variety of the program offerings is a big draw, and illuminates parts of the beauty industry you may not have even known you’d enjoy.

At MSC, you’ll learn how to:

  • Cut, color and style hair
  • Give manicures and pedicures
  • Provide spa treatments
  • Do waxing services
  • Apply facials, masks and enzyme peels
  • Apply makeup

In addition to beauty basics, our program instills the importance of professionalism and shows how a commercial salon operates.

It’s all part of the multifaceted aspect of MSC’s learning environment.

4. Student Support

Our instructors work hard to provide students with the necessary skills and knowledge to find a job in the cosmetology industry.

MSC’s career services representatives are here to help you. Even if you find yourself in a transition period later down the road, you can always come back for guidance and help.

We assist students in a number of ways, including:

  • Finding current job openings
  • Helping with resumes and cover letters
  • Conducting mock interviews
  • Teaming with potential employers for demos, career fairs and panel discussions

MSC also offers financial aid for those who qualify. Our financial aid representatives will work with you to identify any potential scholarship or grant opportunities you may qualify for.

We work to empower our students and help them reach their goals.Minnesota School of Cosmetology, beauty school, reasons, why, check out

5. Have Fun at School!

Cosmetology training at MSC isn’t like a traditional classroom. Just check out our campuses—you’ll see how different things are.

We try to make the learning experience fun for students, whether that means helping high school students get ready for prom, volunteering in the community or participating in fashion competitions. You’ll never feel like school is the “same old, same old.”

These are just a few of the reasons why you should check out Minnesota School of Cosmetology. Feel free to come in and look around, contact an admissions representative or read our blog.

You’ll soon see that MSC is right for you!


*Apple, the Apple logo, iPad, Mac, MacBook, and MacBook Air are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. iBookstore is a service mark of Apple Inc. Programs may vary by campus.