The world we live in is full of signs. For centuries, they have been used to identify everything from doctors and hospitals to blacksmiths and barbers. Walk into the Tulsa Tech Barbering and Cosmetology lab on the Peoria Campus any night and you won’t see the iconic barber pole. Instead you will see Barbering instructor Chuck Jones, and within minutes you will witness his passion and hear his dream.
“My desire is to present a barbershop that will become as popular and celebrated as a salon,” Jones boasted. “I want to make sure my barbershop is a place where everybody feels welcome.”
For more than two decades, Jones has worked as a professional barber here in Tulsa. Now he works to pass his knowledge on to the next generation. Creating with each snip and buzz what he sees as limitless potential.
“I want to create an environment where the students have no limitations,” Jones remarked. “We want to make sure our barbers know the latest trends, and can help any customer that walks through the door.”
That is where the public comes in, every Monday through Thursday from 4:30 pm to 6:30 pm, students will cut your hair for a small fee. While the idea of a barber college cut can send chills down your spine, Jones say you have nothing to fear.
“As a barber college, you already have a bad image,” Jones said. “We want to make it so these students have enough work that they don’t know bad haircuts.”
The live work on customers helps students sharpen their skills, and practice the science of barbering. In less than two years, the program covers everything from the history of barbering to the science of hair anatomy and disorders.
“They are kind of like hair doctors,” Jones quipped “Students have to learn a lot more than what you think a barber would know. They are knowledgeable to help you beyond a simple trim.”
But he says the proudest moment for him is when he sees students graduate the program, take their state licensure test and move on to their own careers.
“My favorite part is when I can connect a student to their dream,” Jones said with pride. “The celebration for me begins with a student gaining skills they didn’t see themselves having.”