Top knot win for young hairdresser

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Shelley resident Claudia Cole has won Challenger Institute of Technology’s prestigious Student of the Year Award.

Claudia (19) received the coveted prize, together with the Apprentice of the Year Award, at Challenger Institute’s Student Awards Ceremony in Fremantle on 9 April.

The ceremony recognised the achievements of more than 70 students from across the institute, as well as five major award winners in the categories Apprentice of the Year, Trainee of the Year, Vocational Student of the Year, VET in Schools Student of the Year and Aboriginal Student of the Year.

After completing a two year apprenticeship with Challenger Institute and Definitions for Hair in Myaree, Claudia graduated last year with a Certificate III in Hairdressing.

No stranger to success, Claudia recently won a gold medal at the WorldSkills Australia 2013 regional competition in hairdressing, which will enable her to represent Western Australia in the WorldSkills national team in 2015.

Claudia also achieved high accolades at Challenger Institute’s Hairdressing Excellence Awards last year, winning first place in the ladies fashion cut and colour category and second place in the long hair design category.

Claudia, who wanted to be a hairdresser from an early age, said her passion for this exciting industry had grown over the years.

“As I grew up I watched my role model, my mum, pursue her career path as a hairdresser which involved working in prestigious salons in London and now owning her own salon in Perth,” Claudia said.

My calling to hairdressing was initially the desire to cut hair, but now I understand there are many different aspects to hairdressing and so much more to learn to be able to succeed in this industry.

“The trends within the hairdressing industry are forever changing, which is exciting and motivating. I always make sure I’m up with the latest developments in technology, products and techniques by attending workshops, and reading hair and fashion magazines.

“One of the favourite aspects of my work as a hairdresser is the customer satisfaction I receive from doing something that can truly change a client’s appearance and make them feel confident, as they always should.”

Claudia’s career goals include building up her hairdressing skills to an international level and eventually pursuing her dream to participate at high-end fashion events.

Challenger Institute hairdressing lecturer Sue Welsh said Claudia was an outstanding student who demonstrated great talent and enthusiasm for hairdressing.

“Claudia has excellent customer service skills and an exceptional rapport with staff, fellow students and clients alike,” Sue said.

Her client base has grown due to her strong creativity and work practices.”

The 2013 Student of the Year Award was sponsored by Challenger Institute and the 2013 Apprentice of the Year Award was proudly sponsored by the Rotary Club of Cockburn.

PHOTO CAPTION: Challenger Institute’s 2013 Student of the Year and Apprentice of the Year Claudia Cole

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