Do You Need a High School Diploma/GED to Get Into Beauty School?
While admissions criteria for beauty schools can vary significantly, as with other types of schools, a high school diploma or general equivalency diploma (GED) is often required to get in. Some beauty schools may admit people without one, but this ultimately depends on the particular beauty or cosmetology school and the state in which they're located. Some states require that beauty school graduates have either a high school diploma or GED in order to become licensed cosmetologists. So with this in mind, let's take a look at the options that are available to you if you don't have one:
Full Admission and Requirements
The beauty schools that don't require completion of high school or a GED often still have some stipulations in place for admissions. Usually, these schools require their applicants to pass an exam at the beauty college, like the Ability to Benefit test, to prove that they meet the minimum required levels needed to succeed in the program. However, all of the actual hoops necessary to jump through in order to enroll without a high school diploma varies by the beauty or cosmetology school.
Some beauty schools and cosmetology schools may also offer conditional admission to the program. Basically, this means that the student has technically been admitted into the program but has a specified period of time to take the GED exam or obtain a high school diploma. Depending on the school's policies, the student may or may not be allowed to actually start attending beauty classes.
Although there are schools that will admit applicants without a GED or high school diploma, there are several other factors to consider. As previously mentioned, some states require the cosmetologist to have this prior to becoming licensed. Even if the state the person resides or attends beauty school in does not require this, transferring the license may be problematic if the individual moves or changes jobs. In addition to this, some employers will not hire a cosmetologist who lacks a high school diploma or GED.
Contact the Beauty School
The best course of action is to contact the beauty or cosmetology school you are interested in to discuss their admissions requirements. The beauty school representatives can often provide further information about the state requirements and school-specific requirements that you need to be aware of. If you are still completing high school, the beauty school admissions representative may even have suggested classes you can take in high school that can help prepare you for the beauty or cosmetology classes you take during the program. This can help give you a jump start on training for a career in the beauty industry.