TUCSON, Ariz. — Along with everything else during the COVID-19 pandemic, trade schools are at a halt.
Kylee Hourscht, a student with Pima JTED’s Cosmetology Cutting Class, was ready to graduate and obtain her cosmetology license before the pandemic hit.
"We were all just shocked and pretty upset about it. It was just all a shock. I mean, we didn't didn't really know what to do. We were all really upset about it because, you know, we've been looking forward to graduating and getting our ceremony for our license and going to take out test for our license,” said Hourscht.
An executive order from Governor Doug Ducey allowed cosmetology schools to extend the out-of-seat time hours to online portals. Hourscht and her classmates are meeting online twice a week.
"We are working with the state board of cosmetology in regards to that order and we will be bringing students back to out school at some point at some point, in order to prepare them for the state board test,” said Kathleen Atman with Pima JTED.
A solution: cosmetology students are getting a temporary six-month license under its board.
"We'll be able to go into work right away, but we'll still end up having to take our test after the six months,” said Hourscht.
Hourscht does have a job lined up. She is unsure, though, if her start date has been postponed especially since salons aren’t open.
But despite all of the uncertainty, Hourscht has kept a positive attitude about her situation and is trying to finish her year at Pima JTED.
Her advice to every class of 2020 student, "Just keep in mind that the fact that we're still getting our diplomas, we're just not getting a graduation ceremony. And it sucks, it really does, but I think we just need to keep busy and stay calm.”
Keeping calm and stepping up, in what Asman said, was a rapidly moving transition.
“We are definitely supportive of our students and they'll really transitioned well. Of course, this is just new territory for everyone and they have been so resilient and we're proud of each and everyone of them,” said Asman.