NMU Debuts Natural Hair Cultivation Program

Past cosmetology students (stock photo)

Northern Michigan University's School of Cosmetology is debuting a new natural hair cultivation certificate program this fall so that students will be prepared to provide services for all hair types when they start working in professional salons. The program aligns with NMU's commitment to diversity and inclusion.

Instructor Charmaine Goodlow, who owns Charmaine's Beauty Bar in Iron Mountain, told TV6 cultured hair is “usually textured hair, and we can manipulate the hair in a natural way” through techniques that put tension on hair strands. These include locking, twisting, wrapping, weaving, extensions, braiding by hand or wig-making.

“The community has been asking for it, the campus has been asking for it and students have been asking for it,” added instructor Michelle Whitaker. “It's something that has been around within the state as far as licensing is concerned for quite some time, so we are really excited to be able to bring this to NMU.”

The professionals in the field must understand human anatomy, physiology and nutrition as it pertains to the scalp and hair. They must also be familiar with a variety of hair types. Steve VandenAvond, associate provost and dean of the College of Technology and Occupational Sciences, addressed NMU's Board of Trustees at the May meeting when the program was approved.

“We think it's going to have an impact on our students and their ability to get jobs wherever they want to go,” said VandenAvond. "It's a 16-credit program."

Learn more about NMU's natural hair cultivation certificate program here. Watch the related TV6 story here.

Prepared By

Ian McCullough
Student Writer

Categories: Around NMU, Strategic Plan