Feature Article: The Gordon Robertson Beauty Academy
Modern Beauty Academies
Most people do not take beauty seriously when it comes to careers. When thinking of beauty school many people will still conjure an image of Grease's "Beauty School Drop Out" song in their minds. This image needs to be reinvented because today's beauty schools provide the training for women and men alike to create a successful and respectable career. With vocational training becoming a popular choice for students here in
One of the best public beauty academies in
-Become an Aesthetics Professional
-Become a Hair Care Professional
-Become a Professional Electrologist
-Become a Body Care Professional
-Become an Entrepreneur in the Beauty Industry
On the Gordon Robertson website they provide 5 questions to ask yourself if you are thinking of joining their beauty academy:
1) Do you want a career in the beauty industry?
2) Do you want a career that is in high demand?
3) Are you a hands-on person?
4) Do you want to own your own business?
5) Do you want a fresh start in less than a year?
If you answered yes to most, or all of these questions, then The Gordon Robertson Beauty Academy is probably a good place for you to be. All of the courses are offered solely on a part-time basis except for the aesthetics and hair care courses which can be taken full-time or part-time full time for 12 or 24 months respectively. Gordon Robertson is an English school, so all of the courses are offered in English only.
Interview with a Gordon Robertson Graduate
(Photo of Amanda and I at the Interview: Amanda is on the right)
Amanda Carrier is a graduate of the aesthetics course at Gordon Robertson, and she offered to share some of her experience with me. We decide to meet for drinks so that I can ask her questions about the program that she completed.
Amanda is a 23 year old with a lot of drive and determination. She completed her aesthetics course a couple of years ago and is now halfway through the highly competitive professional photography program at
Stephanie: So, what course did you take at Gordon Robertson?
Amanda: I took the Aesthetics course.
S: What did the course cover exactly?
A: It covered makeup, waxing, facial treatments, body treatments, and a little bit of business and customer service skills.
S: How long was the course? When did it start and finish?
A: The course started at the end of August and went until mid-June. Just like high school or elementary school.
S: How did you find the teachers? Helpful?
A: The teachers were really nice and very passionate about what they taught. I was very impressed by them.
S: What kind of form did the course take? Was it mostly hands-on?
A: When we first started it was mostly theory, for about a month. Then at the end of the course we had to learn a little bit about business which was also mostly theory, but everything else in between was completely hands-on practice.
S: Who did you practice on?
A: For a month we practiced our skills on each other. Then we were allowed to bring people in to practice on, like friends and family members. Then we started getting real clients.
S: Yeah, I read about that on the website, apparently people can make appointments and receive spa quality treatments from the students for reduced prices? Is that right? Are those the clients that you're talking about?
A: Yes. It was mostly older women who came in. They were always really nice and patient with us. Every week one person would be manager. Basically you greeted the clients and assigned them to a student. We always had to tell the teacher what our facial treatment plan/makeup plan was before we started. The teacher would double check and ok our plan. We did facials, back facials (a facial for your back), makeup, waxing, manicures, and pedicures.
S: What did you spend the most time learning?
A: We spent the most time on facials. There was a lot to learn about skin types, skin condition, skin diseases, so on.
S: Did you have to complete a stage to graduate?
A: Yes we had to do a stage at the end of May. We had to work at a spa, for free, to see what the job was like.
S: What would you say the best and worst parts of the course were?
A: The best parts were the teachers, and learning about makeup. I love makeup so that was my favourite. We got so many makeup items that we were allowed to keep. Big palettes of all different colors, makeup brushes, almost everything that we would need for our kits. The worst part for me had to be the girls in my class. They were so lazy and never wanted to do anything, especially with the clients that came in. They would ask dumb questions in class, like why does the skin have three layers? There is no answer! It just does! I was taking the course very seriously. It is a career program! It seemed like the other girls weren't though. That's the only negative thing I can say though. Everything about the school itself was great.
S: Thanks for all the information! I'm sure it will help someone out to read about your experience!
A: You're welcome!
There are many great vocational training schools that offer their courses in French, and there are also many private vocational training schools in Montreal, but this review will examine the top five English-language, public vocational training schools in Montreal. Let's get started!
5) Pearson Electrotechnology Centre (PEC):
This school belongs to the Lester B. Pearson School Board, and it is the only English public school of its kind in all of
Classes for all three programs are offered either during the day from 8:00 to 3:00, or in the evenings from 3:30-10:30. The school features state of the art equipment and all training involves hands-on experience with the highest safety standards. The school partners closely with many businesses including Videotron, Belden, Commission de la construction du
The West Island Career Centre belongs to the Lester B. Pearson School Board and offers training for a wide variety of skilled trades. They cover the fields of healthcare, automobile mechanics, interior decorating and visual display, residential and commercial drafting, and accounting and administration. The specific programs include: Accounting, Administrative Professional, Assistance in Healthcare Facilities, Automobile Mechanics, General building Maintenance, Health, Assistance and Nursing Care, Home Care Assistance, Hygiene and Sanitation in Health Care Settings, Interior Decorating and Visual Display, Medical Office Specialist, Medical Secretary, Residential and Commercial Drafting, and Starting a Business.
This school offers a "Student for a Day" program which pairs up potential students with current students. They are able to spend the day at the school, attending real classes before they decide if it is the right school and/or program for them.
3) PACC Vocational Centre (Pearson Adult and Career Centre):
The PACC Vocational Centre belongs to the Lester B. Pearson School Board. The school offers vocational programs in the fields of food services and tourism, administration, and health. The programs include: Retail Butchery, Food & Beverage Services, Professional Cooking, Pastry Making, Accounting Studies, Administrative Professional , Pharmacy Technical Assistance, Home Care Assistance, Health, Assistance and Nursing Care, Dental Assistance, Assistance in HealthCare Facilities. There is a great variety of programs available to students.
An interesting note is that PACC offers their students an amazing resource free of charge, the online use of the language learning software, Rosetta Stone!
2) Shadd Business Centre:
1000 Old Orchard
The Shadd Business Centre is part of the English Montreal School Board. The school has been around for over 15 years and their reputation is highly respected. The Shadd Business Centre boasts an impressive job placement rate for qualified graduates. The programs that they offer include: Accounting, Assistance in Healthcare, Pharmacy Technical Assistance, Secretarial Studies, and Starting a Business.
All programs are full-time, but students have the option to sign up for daytime or evening classes. The Shadd Business Centre is very aware that many students are going to be balancing full-time jobs with school, and their flexible scheduling options reflect that.
1) Rosemount Technology Centre (RTC):
The Rosemount Technology Centre is one of the largest English-language technical career training centres in all of
The school employs a work-study assignment within all of their programs which allows students to use their newly learned skills in real working environments. This often leads to job opportunities in the future.
Although Aboriginals attended residential schools during the late 19th to mid-20th century, their pain and suffering are still evident today. The children were sexually, physically, psychologically, and spiritually abused. These emotional scars are still in effect, either through the attendees themselves, or through their families.To further stipulate, the abuse that the attendees received were passed down knowingly and unknowingly to their family members, especially their children. As the attendees were children themselves, they grew up in an environment where abuse was habitual and seemed normal. Therefore, when they had children themselves, they often imitated the habits they learned at school, consciously or unconsciously. This created discord amongst the communities where drug abuse, alcohol abuse, and sexual abuse are still active today. The main focus is that not enough action has been done to provide treatment and closure to the victims and their families.
The positive development of any given society is borne by its members and the contributions which they are allowed to make continue to enhance its progression. This statement can be true, if all members are willing participants and are allowed to share in the enrichment of their respective society. The level and manner towards this participation must be defined and determined by each individual/group. For every person acquires his/her own experiences and perspectives of the world, which are unique unto themselves. Permitting the inclusion of these perceptions would not only add to the social flavor of that populace, it would also increase the likelihood of its members reaching their human potential. To stifle this reality would limit the richness that that society could potentially reach. The depth of this progression could be capitalized on if the society was comprised of an array of ethnic groups. For each cultural community possesses its own distinct language, art, literature, food, religion, traditions and history.
The same is true for the Black community of Montreal, whose recorded history starts four hundred years ago with Mathieu DaCosta. DaCosta, a free Black African, who was the interpreter to the Native peoples for Samuel de Champlain and Pierre Dugua de Monts in 1608 and according to early documents he may have been present in the Port Royal Habitation in the Annapolis Basin in 1605.  Mathieu DaCosta was an experienced translator who had many interactions with the Europeans and spoke French, Portuguese and Dutch. It is assumed that his ability to communicate with the Aboriginal people stems from frequenting the Americas or learning "pidgin"a dialect used in the New World by the Basques of Spain, which the Natives understood.
In the year 2000, the Ministry of Education rang in the new millennium with a whole new way of educating Quebec children. In the mid-1990s, Pauline Marois, then the Education Minister, had noticed a high dropout rate and decided to see what could be done to improve that, so a series of studies were undertaken, and the Quebec Education Program, colloquially known as "the Reform," was born (Guimont). The Reform was implemented gradually, starting in preschool and elementary in 2000, Grades 7-8 in 2005 and Grades 9-11 between 2006 and 2009. Junior high school teachers began seeing children who had been educated exclusively under the Reform in 2005, senior high school teachers in 2007. The first cohort of students who were educated entirely under the Reform are now in their 2nd year of CEGEP (Branswell).
Last year I had the privilege of hearing a talk delivered by a young man at the secondary school where I teach. Shaun Perrier has Asperger Syndrome, and he gave the talk - on his own initiative - to his peers at the school, to let them know what it is like to have Asperger's. The syndrome is an autism spectrum disorder characterized by difficulties with social interaction due to an inability to catch nuances in others' words and body language, and a similar lack of nuance of their own - a lack of facial expression, and speaking in a monotonous or overly formal manner. It is also characterized by a need to have a highly controlled environment, with a fixation on repetitive routines or rituals, as well as clumsiness. I was teary-eyed listening to the struggles that Shaun had gone through in his life and deeply impressed by how much he had overcome, and my heart went out to him and others like him, who deserve every opportunity to succeed that society can give them.
Image source: Flickr.
Graduation can mean so many things. It means happiness and sadness, freedom and restriction, utter fear and absolute excitement, all at the same time. This is all due to the many decisions that must be taken as soon as graduation becomes a near event. Even the smallest decisions become big ones as all of us graduating students begin to think of what each decision could possibly translate into later on for us. Relocation is the biggest decision for international students who usually have to compare and contrast where they are now with their home. To help make their decision, they need to decide which important criteria they need to base their decision on to be able to make the best one possible. Personally, I have to make a decision on whether or not I should stay in Canada a few years after graduation or relocate back to the Emirates. I am Palestinian, which means in most countries I am considered a 'stateless' person which is what makes immigration laws and citizenship the most major decisive factors for my relocation. Canada and the UAE are both great countries that I have enjoyed and I honestly would not mind settling in either, but I need to compare and contrast immigration laws as well as employment ones for me to make a decision after graduation.
Image source: Flickr
Language remains a controversial
issue in Quebec, especially Montreal. The adequacy of Law 101 is at the core of
many discussions in and outside the province. People's understanding of this
law depends on whether they sit among the Francophones or Anglophones. Most
French speakers believe this law is very important and fair, while most English
speakers see the Charter of the French language as a totalitarian law. Thirty
five years after Bill 101 was passed, the government of Quebec still has to
defend some of its amendments in court.
Image source: Flickr
Immigration is a recurrent issue in countries around the world. The meeting of the host country's and the immigrant's cultures and languages can sometimes cause conflict as nationalisms flare up and cultural and linguistic protectionisms kicks in. An interesting phenomenon is that of the more recently founded nations like those of the Americas. For some countries, like the United States, there is less emphasis on official multiculturalism and more of a tendency to regard the ensemble of citizens as being simply American. For other countries, like Canada, there is an emphasis on multiculturalism and on encouraging cultural diversity... that is, officially.
Our society is constantly changing, and its evolution seems to be affecting people's values and morals at every age. For example, today it is not uncommon to turn on the TV in the middle of the day and see scenes of violence or sexual content that should be reserved to adult viewers. In addition, some rap music, or even video-games, also add to the problem by promoting use of violence or sexist behaviour that in the long run tend to desensitize us. All of these factors, at various levels, contribute to the decline of moral values in modern society. In fact, they are valid examples of the lack of respect shown to our youth's normal psychological development, or to the dignity of those we call minorities because of their gender, race or sexual orientation.
The issue of educational integration for immigrant youth in Quebec is a complicated one. To best explore the subject, I have chosen two articles that examine the problem through studies. The first is Who's in and who's out? Language and the integration of new immigrant youth in Quebec by Dawn Allen, which focuses on the government of Quebec's definition of integration and argues for more inclusive policy. She argues that "...in Quebec's current policy documents, integration is conceptualized in such a way that immigrants are the objects rather than the subjects of integration." (Allen, 2). The second article is by Marilyn Steinbach and is based on findings from a study drawing on interviews with a number of immigrant youth navigating Quebec's "Accueil" system. Its title Quand je sors d'accueil: linguistic integration of immigrant adolescents in Quebec secondary schools refers to the isolation experienced by immigrant youth both socially and academically due to their status. As the issue is a complex one and both papers are quite long, I have chosen to focus on outlining the Accueil (meaning "welcome") system that immigrant youth are required to go through in Quebec before joining regular classes.
- Alexander von Humboldt Schule Baie d'Urfé, Quebec PK to 12(Coed)
- Athol Murray College of Notre Dame Wilcox, Saskatchewan 9 to 12(Coed)
- Bishop's College School Sherbrooke, Quebec 7 to 12(Coed)
- Centennial Academy Montreal, Quebec 7 to 11(Coed)
- Collège Jean-de-Brébeuf Montréal, Québec 1 to 4(All Boys)/5 to 5(All Boys & All Girls)
- College Prep International Montreal, Quebec 5 to 11(Coed)
- The Gow School South Wales, New York 7 to 12(All Boys)
- Kells Academy Montreal, Quebec K to 11(Coed)
- King's-Edgehill School Windsor, Nova Scotia 7 to 12(Coed)
- Kuper Academy Kirkland, Quebec PS to 11(Coed)
- Maplebrook School Amenia, New York UE to UE(Coed)
- Villa Sainte-Marcellines & College International des Marcellines Westmount, Quebec K to 11(All Girls)/12 to UE(Coed)
- Miss Edgar's & Miss Cramp's School Westmount, Quebec K to 11(All Girls)
- Selwyn House School Westmount, Quebec K to 11(All Boys)
- Stanstead College Stanstead, Quebec 7 to 12(Coed)
- The Storm King School Cornwall on Hudson, New York 8 to 12(Coed)
- The Study Westmount, Quebec K to 11(All Girls)
- The Sacred Heart School of Montreal Montreal, Quebec 7 to 11(All Girls)
- Trafalgar School For Girls Montreal, Quebec 7 to 11(All Girls)
- Venta Preparatory School Ottawa, Ontario SK to 10(Coed)
- Villa Maria Montreal, Quebec 7 to 11(All Girls)
Quebec parents have the right to educate their children in the language of their choice, in primary and secondary schools. These rights are immutable. Every child who attends English school will continue the rights for generations to come. Choosing an English school will stop the declining number of English schools in Quebec and ensure the survival of this important linguistic heritage.
Canada is a multi-cultural country where minority language rights instruction in education (English in Quebec and French in the rest of Canada) have been guaranteed under the law since the British North America Act.