Wednesday, July 23, 2014
PLACERVILLE, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Open for business

DSC_7050

ROP COSMETOLOGY student Jayla Stout, left works with Sarah Garrison from El Dorado Hills, seated while instructors Lauren Blaze, center, and Jennifer Fitzgerald look on Wednesday April 30 at the new ROP cosmetology facility at Shenandoh High School in El Dorado. Democrat photo by Pat Dollins

By
From page A1 | May 05, 2014 |

“Sometimes when things are falling apart, they may actually be falling into place.” This is a quotation from a video made by Lauren Blaze, director of Central Sierra Regional Occupation Program School of Cosmetology. The three-minute video shows the aftermath of the October 29, 2013 fire that destroyed the Cosmetology building — blackened rubble, melted doll heads with fried hair, total destruction.

“We had only been on the floor for a couple of months,” said Larae Haddis, one of the adult students in the year-long cosmetology program. “We didn’t know if we would be able to continue in the program or what would happen.”

“I was here the morning that it happened,” said Alceson Wallace, a home-schooled senior. “About a half-hour before class started, we saw the smoke. It was so sad.”

Today, standing in the middle of a high-tech, professional building on the Shenandoah High School campus, there is little to remind one of the old building.

“We weren’t able to salvage anything, so everything is new,” said Blaze. “Our equipment is updated — no more knobs on the dryers. We’re open for business and we want all our clients to know.”

Many of the ROP Cosmetology clients are elderly and on a fixed income. In the six months of rebuilding, the program couldn’t serve clients, so students practiced on each other or on doll heads. Client files were destroyed in the fire and the program had no way of contacting clients or their caregivers to let them know when it would reopen.

Although Blaze and Fitzgerald worked with EDUHSD to find a new classroom to continue the program and got students back to work in a week, the interim building was crowded. A double-classroom portable was adapted to house more than 50 students, equipment and instructors.

“We had one dryer so we just set the doll heads outside in the sun to dry and we would run out of hot water about halfway through the day, but we didn’t complain because we were so grateful that the district kept our students enrolled for those five months and we had a place to teach,” said Blaze. “They (EDUHSD) were committed to completing the work as fast as they could.”

The school district reimbursed students for personal equipment and supplies they had lost in the fire and Blaze and Fitzgerald figured out a way to work around their January and July class cycles.

“We still graduated students from the program, but we couldn’t start a new class in January, so we started those students in April when we reopened,” said Blaze. “In July, we’ll start the next group, so it will be a little busy, but it will work.”

The popular program usually has about 60 students and a waiting list. Students must be seniors to apply and their program lasts 16 months, with partial days and then full-time after high school graduation. Adult students have a one year full-time course.

Without being able to work on clients, students spent more time learning theory. “They really got in-depth theory and that inspired us to make a few changes for the better,” said Blaze.

The program also used the rebuilding time to give back. “We volunteered our services at First Covenant Church in Rancho Cordova over Christmas because we had no place to go,” said Blaze. “It’s wonderful when something tragic happens but we could still give back.”

The rebuild allowed Blaze and fellow teacher Jennifer Fitzgerald the opportunity to update the equipment, style and colors of the ROP program.

“We didn’t have much time to make decisions, but it all works well together — a lot of  things were things we had been talking about,” said Fitzgerald.

The most noticeable changes are the understated, professional look in neutral gray, white and  black and the open look to the floor area. “The old building had dividers everywhere, separating the freshmen and the adult students and it was orange and purple,” said Fitzgerald. “We wanted a professional look that would hold up for the next 30 years and we wanted to open things up.”

The new Theory Room where classes are held boasts a Smart Board and two new computers, the floor area is set up in clean, uncluttered lines with a separate station for each student stylist, doubling the previous 30 stations to 60. The Facial Room was moved to the front of the building allowing for a student Break Room for them to eat lunch and store their personal items. There is a front desk area.

“Before, they had to eat outside on the picnic benches,” said Blaze. “This gives them a place of their own to go.”

To add to the professional atmosphere, students are now required to wear a black scrub uniform. “It’s more structured now and students seem to love it,” said Blaze. “Their skills and attitude are so much better.”

The Cosmetology ROP reopened in its new building on April 22 and from the smiles on the faces of both staff and students, it’s been a big success.

Larae Haddis, 29, is part of the 2013 July class and is close to graduating. “This new building is amazing — very professional and modern. It’s been like a blessing in disguise and it’s nice to see our clients coming back.”

Eighteen-year-old Alceson Wallace said, “Before, we had to share stations, but now we can each have a client. I really like it.”

Central Sierra ROP School of Cosmetology at 6540 Koki Lane  in El Dorado is open for business Tuesdays through Friday, 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Students provide a variety of services including hair styling, hair cuts, color, permanents, facials, waxing, make-up application, manicures and pedicures. The program will be closed for summer break June 20 to July 13 and back in business again on July 14. Call 530-344-8939 for appointments.

Contact Wendy Schultz at 530 344-5069 or wschultz@mtdemocrat.net. Follow @wschultzMtDemo on Twitter.

Comments

comments

.

News

Six file for Dist. 2

By Dawn Hodson | From Page: A1

 
District 2 candidates forum Aug. 14

By News Release | From Page: B1

EID ditch customers get relief

By Michael Raffety | From Page: A1

 
Veterans receive wildland fire training

By News Release | From Page: B1

Market data open for local biz

By Ross Branch | From Page: B1

 
Heard over the back fence: Attorney to warn about scams

By Bob Billingsley | From Page: B1

 
Road zone of benefit protester reaches dead end

By Dawn Hodson | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Volunteers clean up national forest

By News Release | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
.

Opinion

My turn: Special interests at EID

By Special to the Democrat | From Page: A4

 
Russian metastasis

By Mountain Democrat | From Page: A4

The Democratic-Chronicles: Not invented here

By Gene Altshuler | From Page: A4

 
.

Letters

DA hogging Main St. parking

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

 
CAO and staff hiring friends

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

Altshuler’s hypocrisy

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5Comments are off for this post

 
Small Farm compromise

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5Comments are off for this post

EID and Dale Coco

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5Comments are off for this post

 
.

Sports

Roundup: July 22, 2014

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6

 
Dolphins ring up another title

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6 | Gallery

Sharks defeat Loomis Basin in season finale

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6 | Gallery

 
Celebrity golf at Tahoe

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6 | Gallery

Dodgeball: Not the national pastime but …

By Shane Theodore | From Page: A7 | Gallery

 
.

Prospecting

At a glance: Comets to meteors

By Mimi Escabar | From Page: B2

 
Taste the best at the State Fair

By Democrat Staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Tractor Supply Store recognized

By Uc Cooperative | From Page: B3

 
Amador Fair honors cowboys

By Amador County Fair | From Page: B3

 
Arbor Day book helps to identify trees

By Arbor Day | From Page: B4

Learn about lavender and its many benefits

By Christian Women's Connection | From Page: B4

 
Lee’s Feed appreciates customers

By Democrat Staff | From Page: B5

 
My Time meeting in August

By Senior Day | From Page: B5

Builders’ Exchange honors scholars

By El Dorado Builders' Exchange | From Page: B5

 
En garde at Silver Screen Classic

By Auburn Silver Screen | From Page: B5

.

Essentials

Weather stats 7-22-14

By Michael Raffety | From Page: A2

 
Crime Log: July 8-10

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A2

.

Obituaries

Walter Vali

By Contributor | From Page: A2

 
Jean Lachelle Taylor

By Contributor | From Page: A2

Arthur J. Funston

By Contributor | From Page: A2

 
.

Real Estate

.

Comics

Shoe

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Sudoku

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Rubes

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
New York Times Crossword

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Flying McCoys

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Speed Bump

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Tundra

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Horoscope, Thursday, July 24, 2014

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Horoscope, Wednesday, July 23, 2014

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Working It Out

By Contributor | From Page: A8

TV Listings

By Contributor | From Page: A8