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Posted by Stephanie Fernandez on 8/14/2019 12:30:00 PM
Laura Malacarne graduated from Academy High School in 2013 and is now pursuing her passion as a Hair Stylist/ Educator at one of Denver's most popular salons, The Parlour Highlands.
Tell us about your history in Mapleton. What schools did you attend? What year did you graduate?
I am Laura Malacarne, a stylist/educator at The Parlour Highlands. I attended Mapleton from 2006 to 2013. I transferred to Valley View in 7th grade, then continued to Academy for high school. At the time, I was still in the old building. I watched the new Skyview Campus being built from my history classroom and moved to the new Academy High School building my senior year. Throughout my entire time at Mapleton, I was a tri-sport athlete and played volleyball, basketball, and track from 7th through 12th grade.
You work at easily one of Denver’s most popular salons, and how you got there is a great story about chasing your dreams. Tell us about it!
During my time at Mapleton, I always had people asking me to do their hair. I braided and styled teammates’ hair regularly for games and track meets. My friends and family were great supporters of my hobby and let me play with and color their hair. I highlighted my best friends’ hair the night before our senior graduation. I changed my hair multiple times and even started trimming it myself in high school.
Having many great coaches throughout my time in Mapleton taught me to be strong, fight through hard times, push my body and mind to the limits, and most of all, be a team player. After graduation, I went to Otero Junior College for basketball. I was planning to get my Associate of Science. I ended up being redshirted. I had never experienced time off, and that’s what being redshirted was to me, so I jumped into my next chapter. I was fortunate enough to play volleyball at Otero, instead. I loved every minute of being active and busy. I had a reason to keep my grades up. Yet, even in college people kept asking if I could do their hair! I like to think they saw the passion in me.
Junior college requires four semesters to get your Associate degree. After the third semester, volleyball was over and I had nothing else to keep me busy. I was bored and I knew I only did well in school because of volleyball.
I left Otero after the third semester and attended Regency Beauty Institute. I was in the full-time Cosmetology program for almost a year. I made some great friends that pushed me in the direction of the salon I am at now. I was comfortable, happy, and everything came so naturally to me. I enjoyed learning. From the day I enrolled in Cosmetology school I never regretted a thing about my career goals.
After graduating from Regency, I began an internship program at The Parlour in hopes of becoming a stylist. The advanced education the Parlour offers includes sitting in on classes one day a week and eventually taking clients and assisting educators the remainder of the week. It took me over a year to complete the courses needed to become a stylist, and in April of 2017 I finished the internship and became a full-time stylist at The Parlour Highlands! As of December 2018, I am now an educator working behind the chair with an assistant. Becoming an educator was a huge accomplishment for me!
What do you think your next adventure is?
Next, I hope to be teaching my own class within The Parlour’s advanced education program. I hope to learn and grow continuously within my salon and one day become a mentor for someone, just as I have many people I look up to within my salon’s family.
What words of wisdom would you share with high school students, especially seniors, getting ready to make big decisions about their next adventure?
For future graduates, some words of wisdom from me would be to consider things you are good at, consider things that make you happy, that doesn’t feel draining for you to do on a daily basis. If you could wake up every day and want to do something and not feel the need to have to do it, what might that be? You could probably get paid for it. And, if you get creative, maybe even get paid a whole lot!
There is a job for just about everything and everyone out there. I have met many successful people in the time I have spent behind the chair. I am always surprised at the kind of careers people have. Think outside the box. Does hiking through national forests sound fun? You can do that if you decide to draw maps. What about riding horseback miles into the backcountry? A client of mine has been doing that for the last couple weeks to shoot a short film. Do something that makes you happy. I promise it pays off.