Academy LA Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I come see the school?
Absolutely! Contact our Admissions Department at, or call 818-701-5799 to schedule a tour. We are very proud of our campus, our instructors, and our students, so schedule an appointment at your convenience so we can give you a personal tour! (Don’t worry, there is no obligation – we just like showing our program to people interested in a Cosmetology career!)

Is the Academy accredited?
Yes, we are an accredited school. Our accreditation is through the National Accrediting Commission of Career Arts & Sciences, Inc. , (NACCAS). We are also approved to operate in California by the Bureau of Private Postsecondary Education (BPPE), and approved by the U.S. Department of Education (ED) to participate in Title IV Financial Aid programs.

What are the graduation requirements?
To earn your diploma, you must complete the 1600 program  hours, successfully pass (80% or better) your written and practical examinations, and complete the required number of practical procedures.

How do I obtain my license?
To get your license, you must be eligible for (have a valid Social Security number) and pass an examination by the State Board of Cosmetology and Barbering. These exams are offered throughout the year, and you can find more information about these tests at

Tell me about what to expect once I start.
Our classes are very small, so you will have a maximum amount of attention from your instructor. Our freshman class never exceeds 15 students. Your first eight weeks in class are primarily in the classroom. You will participate in lectures and in practical (on your manikins and fellow students) procedures. Once your pass your freshman exams, you start your clinic hours! While there continues to be some lecture and state board drills throughout your clinic hours (especially in the morning hours of class), you will start working on your live clients at this time.

When can I enroll?
Anytime! We start a new freshman class every four weeks (except in December). Please check our current Catalog  to see the next date of enrollment. You will want to contact our Admissions Department (818-701-5799 or to schedule a tour and spend some time with us so we can give you our catalog and answer all of your questions!

Is there a minimum age to enroll?
No. Academy for Salon Professionals requires a level diploma, GED, high school equivalency, college diploma or transcripts or high school diploma for admission into all programs. You must be 17 year old to take the stateboard exam in California. We do not administer an ATB (Ability to Benefit) test to prospective students. If you do not have a valid high-school diploma, we suggest that you look into obtaining your GED by accessing this link:

How is the Academy different?
The Academy has small class sizes. Our goal is to set you up for success and what is your reality in the salon. It isn’t about us here it is all about YOU. Helping you figure out what is your “BRAND” , what is going to set you apart from others. The students take their education seriously and want to learn here. You can feel the energy at the Academy.

Our local salons who have placed many of our graduates cosmetologists have said “your students are better than most 2 year hairdressers”. Our facilitators really care about the students and focus on advance cutting, coloring, and designing hair.

The Academy’s esthetics is more advanced with tools and products. The goal with both programs is to work on real clients for more real situations.

How do you choose your instructors?
We try to get people with experience but not set in their ways. Our way of teaching is different from other schools so it is important to have them open to change. We interview and have them come in for a second interview. If all if well after that interview then we bring them in for a hands on interview. Then we have a training process for them to go through to ensure they are a good fit for the Academy.

Do you have job placement?
It is the Academy’s goal to help every student find a job, we cannot guarantee but we will help as much as we can. However, if the student shows lack of passion and enthusiasm during their time here at the Academy it is difficult for us to write those letters of recommendation. In our letters we track all the clients students have had during their time here, how many add-on services, pre-booked clients, products sold, and requests and put all these totals in their letter. We also add GPA and attendance numbers. These are all things a salon or spa would want to know about their potential hire.

Do you offer financial aid?
We do have financial aid available for those who qualify. We offer both private and government financial aid in the form of grants and loans. We are happy to work with you to tailor a financial aid program specifically for you! Contact our Financial Aid Administrators at, or call them at 818-701-5799.

How much out of pocket will I have to pay?
Our students all pay at least a $250 registration deposit (this is applied to your tuition). Some students pay some or all of the remaining tuition in cash payments, others use grants, scholarships, and/or Federal Student loans to make up the difference.

Can I make payments while in school?
Of course. We do not charge interest nor loan fees if you wish to pay cash for some or all of your tuition while in school.

I live on my own, do I have to involve my parents to get Federal Aid (FSA)?
If you are single, under 24 years old, and have no dependents, then you will need to have your parents’ income/tax information included on your FAFSA. If your parents are unable or unwilling to participate in the FAFSA process, then you may still be eligible for some Unsubsidized loans, but you will probably not qualify for grants (there are some exceptions – talk with our Financial Aid office to learn about the specifics). Your parents’ participation does NOT mean that they must co-sign on your student loan (in fact, they do NOT co-sign on your loan); they must merely be willing to supply and attest to information on family income, family size, and taxes paid.

What if I am not an American Citizen?
You do not have to be an American citizen to qualify for Federal Student Aid. There are eligible non-citizens who do qualify for Federal Aid. Talk to our office to learn more!

I know I will not qualify for FAFSA, so why should I fill it out
“FAFSA” stands for Free Application for Student Aid. The FAFSA will qualify you for grants and/or Subsidized loans from the government if your family income is low enough. But even if your income is too high for grants and Subsidized loans, the FAFSA also allows you to qualify for low-interest Unsubsidized loans. If your income is too high and you don’t want loans, then no need for the FAFSA. But if cash payments for your tuition are too high to complete before you graduate, then a Federal Student Loan may be just the help you need!

What if I am still in high school; can I enroll in the Academy?
We do require a high school diploma, GED, AA/S, or BA/S to attend the Academy. We are happy to talk to you and help you plan for your future before you graduate high school, but to start the course, you must have completed one of the diploma/GED programs.

I have an online high-school diploma. Will that do?
There are some online highschools that do issue genuine diplomas, but it is our experience that a great number of online highschools are not legitimate. Be sure to check out the online program, make sure that the high school is legitimate and accredited by a REAL accrediting company. If you paid $250 for an ‘online’ diploma without really taking substantial classes, then you have wasted your money. Our best advice is to go through the California GED program at . You must be comfortable with studying and testing to succeed in the Cosmetology and Esthetics courses offered at the Academy. Success with a genuine diploma or GED program will help you prepare for our classes as well.

What if I cannot find my diploma?
We are happy to accept your high school transcripts in lieu of your diploma. Just contact your high school to get your official transcript that indicates that you graduated and we are back on track!

I never graduated high school, but I have gone to college before and I received FSA. Can I attend the Academy?
While having received FSA before would make you eligible to continue receiving FSA for future programs even without a highschool diploma, the Academy’s Entrance Rules have always and will always require a diploma or GED.

I had a Federal Student Loan a while back, but I did not pay it off. Does that mean that I cannot have more aid?
Previous loans do not disqualify you from borrowing for one of our programs unless you are in default or have borrowed more than is allowed over your lifetime. If you are in default, you can call our office and we can tell you how to resolve the default. If you are unwilling to resolve the default, then you will no longer be eligible for FSA.

Do you take transfer credits?
Yes, we will take up to 300 hours for Cosmetology and up to 120 hours towards an Esthetics class, as long as the credits (hours) were earned at an accredited Cosmetology school that is accepted by the State Board of California. A transcript and Proof of Training from the former school would be required at enrollment to qualify for the transfer credits.

Will you help me find a job once I get my license?
It is our belief at the Academy that we are successful only when our graduates are successful.  During your tenure at the Academy, we offer training in job-seeking skills, portfolio management, resume counseling, client retention, and reception skills. We do offer placement assistance, though we do not guarantee every graduate a job. We offer our students and alumni opportunities to build their portfolios during and after their tenure here; we are very proud of our Alumni and we are honored that they continue to benefit through their association with the Academy.

Are we allowed the freedom to get our own color formula or is there a dispensary?
The students at the Academy consult with the client first, come up with the formula, call over their facilitator to reiterate the conversation and the color formula. Once all this is complete the student and the facilitator move over to our open color bar to mix up their formula. Our goal is to always empower the students.

Are we allowed the freedom to get our own facial products or is there a dispensary?
The students consult their clients, discuss issues based on the skin consultation form, reiterate the conversation and suggestions of the products to use. Once all is signed off then the student moves to the open dispensary to choose what they need for their operations. Our goal is to always empower the students.



Do you learn well by flying under the radar in a large crowd? or do you prefer to learn hands on in an intimate setting?
Smaller schools have higher expectations from their students because their teachers know more about each student’s capabilities. Studies have shown that larger schools have higher rates of absenteeism, & discipline problems which affect student achievement & drop-out rates.

Does the school provide job placement?
The Academy is very interested in helping you find a place to call home. We post jobs on social media along with communicating directly with the students when they let us know they are looking.

Do you want to graduate from a Mega School (where you might be one of a possible 300), or do you want to graduate from a boutique training program (where you would be one of less than 100)?
The Academy has very small class sizes up to 15 for cosmetology and 16 in our esthetics program all together.

How important is a branded school for my future career?
In the last ten years many beauty brands have gotten into the career school business. Companies like Redken, Paul Mitchell, Aveda, L’Oreal, Wella, Toni & Guy, all see that opening schools and graduating students who are pre-sold on their brand is the easiest way to obtain market share for sales of their products. This works out great for the large companies but might not be the best choice for a new stylist entering the field. In effect, the schools mission becomes to train acolytes for the brand, not to give them the most well-rounded education. While they can deliver a good training, a student considering a school should examine each brand realize that if you are trained with a brand that is predominantly sold in “budget salons”, you will be well trained to work in a “budget” salon. The Academy works with L’Oreal color, a standard in the industry, as well as other brands (Redken,Privana, Ayur-Medic, Skin Fitness, Dermalogica) but we are privately and locally owned and not beholden to, or controlled by, any corporate philosophy.

Why would I tour more schools?
Every school has its own culture & feel. It is important to find what fits you best and how you feel when you are there. An Academy tour will give you a first-hand experience inside our culture. No student goes unnoticed, and every student’s true potential is maximized. We don’t have or allow the cattiness of students, we coach professionalism at all times. You may not like someone but you must show respect for one another here while attending school.

If you have additional questions, please feel free to call or email!