In this S•R Spotlight on Education I'm excited to introduce you all to the lovely ladies of Foundation Hair Academy. Located on beautiful Vancouver Island, BC, Foundation Hair Academy is the brainchild of Courtenay Girard, Megan Griffiths, and Staysea Brown (pictured L-R above).
I first met these three talented women when they took my Women's Comprehensive Cutting Class in Vancouver back in 2014. From the very beginning their passion was clear. It's been such a privilege to mentor them and see their growth in both skill and confidence in their craft. I can't wait to see what they do next!
A big thank you to Courtenay, Megan, and Stays for taking the time to chat with us!
MEET THE LADIES OF FOUNDATION HAIR ACADEMY
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background.
We are a dynamic trio with varying backgrounds and combined hair experience of over 30 years. All three of us were raised in small remote towns across British Columbia, Canada. Hairstyling has given us the opportunity to travel and has pushed us to search out high-caliber education in larger metropolitan cities around the globe. Over the course of our careers, collectively we have participated in advanced education workshops and programs with Aveda, TIGI, Goldwell, Davines, Kevin Murphy, Arrojo & S•R Education traveling to Vancouver, Montreal, New York, Dallas, Las Vegas, California & Australia.
We share very similar core values focused around integrity, kindness, and community which has given us a wonderful platform for our new education brand. It's important for us to connect in business with other professionals that share those same principles. This is why we feel so fortunate to be working with S•R education. Our main goal, in this venture, is to elevate the craft we care so much about and to foster a growing group of like-minded stylists that are comfortable sharing information and supporting each other in their work.
Tell us about Foundation Hair Academy and the services you provide.
Currently, we are teaching advanced hair color and styling workshops to hairstylists in our local area on Vancouver Island. As we move towards our goal of opening a full curriculum Hair Academy we are undergoing a year-long teacher training program through S•R Education. This will enable us to use Sally’s cutting methods in our future academy that is destined to open it’s doors in 2018.
What do you like best about what you do?
First of all, we all LOVE being behind the chair doing hair. It has always been a passion that we share as a group. But since training with Sally, new interests have started to grow. While we are still just as excited about constantly evolving and bringing new trends and techniques into our individual work, we all have fallen in love with teaching. As we gain experience and confidence through our training and practice, our passion for instruction is developing steadily. The presentation aspect is both challenging and fun. But, to be honest, the connections we are making with stylists who come to our workshops is really our favorite part. Now that we have opened this new chapter in our careers, it is clear there will be no turning back.
What do you like about working in the hair industry?
It's a constant challenge to stay current and on trend. That is what keeps us from getting bored or losing interest in the workplace. As stylists, we feel incredibly lucky to have a platform to make our clients feel good about themselves. The world we live in can get crazy sometimes, but it's human connections that matter most. We have such an incredible opportunity in this career to impact others in a really positive way.
What are some of the trends you see happening in the industry right now?
The global trend towards micro-education has been really well adopted by the hair industry. This is very exciting, especially for stylists working in smaller communities like ourselves. Technology is making education much more accessible to stylists in every part of the world. It gives us a constant connection to fashion and what trends are in style. Until recently, there had been a disconnect between education being promoted by larger hair companies and the more mainstream looks seen on the covers of magazines. Now stylists can find education more easily either online or in classes that cater more to client-focused trends.
How did you first meet Sally and begin working with S•R Education?
Courtenay was introduced to Sally through her first Kickstarter Campaign when she contributed to her vision by purchasing one of the first waves of S•R Education DVDs. Staysea and Megan attended the Women’s Comprehensive Cutting class in Vancouver in 2014 and then all three of us returned to take the Men’s class in the spring of 2015. Our long term relationship with Sally was solidified following that class when we had an opportunity to spend the day in a private class in S•R Education Salon Advocate training. We were fortunate to have Sally all to ourselves. It was then that we decided to go ahead with the academy knowing that we would have such a strong supportive mentor in Sally.
What do you think differentiates S•R Education from other education programs you've seen?
It is both more comprehensive and simple at the same time. Although we have all been doing hair for 10+ years, there were so many “ah ha” moments during our training. The material is extremely thorough, but is so well laid out and easy to follow. We have all learned a lot about haircutting ourselves and have had great success teaching it to our apprentices.
What's it like working with Sally?
She’s the coolest! Her energy is fantastic and as women in the industry we look up to her as a strong female coach. She also has such a depth of knowledge regarding both hair and education and is always willing to share it. She doesn't hold anything back as an educator so the scope of knowledge she has imparted to us is incredible!