Students offer free haircuts on Mondays and Wednesdays from 2:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. so they can practice their skills.
MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Memphis-Shelby County Schools offers several industry certification programs for your child to enroll in this school year.
Cosmetology, Hairdressing, STEM, Culinary Arts, Veterinary Medicine, and Health Sciences are just a few of the dual credit options available to students.
At Whitehaven High School, a group of boys are on their way to earning barber certification. And this school year, these students are offering free haircuts on Mondays and Wednesdays from 2:30-5:30 p.m. so they can practice their skills.
Free haircuts are done on the WHS campus.
For about six years now, Eric Massey has been Whitehaven’s barber instructor, although that wasn’t always his plan.
“I said no! I don’t teach kids,'” he said.
Massey was already an adult instructor and runs his own barber shop called E. Massey’s Barber Shop in Whitehaven. However, he said he changed his mind once he realized he had the opportunity to change children’s lives.
“It’s such a blessing for children, it’s scary,” he said. “It’s just such a blessing because they come here, they run their business, they learn a trade and they’re not out on the streets doing stupid things because you know how it is.”
In addition to being mentored, these students can begin their careers immediately after graduating from high school. The program has been available to students for years during school hours, but now it is also an after-school program.
When students begin the program in the second year and stay until they graduate from high school, they will have all the hours and knowledge needed to pass a test and earn their license.
“You can’t beat him,” Massey said. “It costs up to $10,000 to $20,000 to get your barber’s license, but now these kids are getting it for free. You can’t do better.”
Massey students also have the opportunity to land jobs at its store after graduation. He said he has already hired six former Whitehaven High School students who have completed his program.