As students inside Westfield High School began their fourth period class on Tuesday, Spring ISD officials gathered right outside the school to celebrate the opening of a brand-new facility that will serve as the home for the Barbering Program and its students.
With a red ribbon at the ready to be cut, Superintendent Rodney Watson spoke to the gathered crowd about the excitement surrounding the new Career and Technical Education program.
“It has long been our mission in Spring ISD to shape, mold and support students who are ready to make the leap into the workforce,” Dr. Watson said. “In just the second year of this program, it is completely full. The students asked for it, and they are using it.”
The program is a product of a partnership between Spring ISD and Eros Shaw, a local barber (and Westfield graduate), as well as the entrepreneur behind Mystros Barber Academy.
The program began last year, with a cohort of 14 students participating. This year, the program is full, with 25 students entering into the academy. For the start of the school year, students attended classes at Mystros Barbering Academy, but with the opening of the custom-built barbering academy and laboratory at Westfield, the students will no longer have to travel away from campus.
“This is an exciting development for our students in Westfield High School for many reasons,” Cynthia Williams, Career and Technical Education Director, said. “We are able to offer these students the chance to jumpstart a meaningful career, with zero cost to them, all in a state-of-the-art facility that is beautiful and ready to go.”
Students will take part in a four-year program, which centers around a trio of year-long courses: a customer service class for freshmen, Barbering 1 for sophomores, and Barbering 2 for juniors.
Once those students have completed the required amount of hours and received their barbering license, they can participate in career prep programs their senior year, allowing them to attend classes and work professionally as a fully licensed barber through the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation.
As Chief of Innovation and Equity Dr. Lupita Hinojosa points out, the opening is a result of the cooperation and hard work of many people over the past several years.
“It has taken a lot of work from our CTE Department, along with many other people and organizations, to get this program up and running,” Dr. Hinojosa said. “I firmly believe that we have created something unique and dynamic that will serve generations of Spring ISD students, and I cannot wait to see where this barbering program goes in the future.”