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Vanguard College of Slidell
A Paul Mitchell Partner School Team

Meet some of the team members who make Vanguard College of Slidell, A Paul Mitchell Partner School, so special.

Taylor Foster

Regional Marketing Leader

Experience in the beauty industry…

With a mother who was a part of the beauty industry my entire life and prior experience in retail management and cosmetics, I feels as though I found the perfect fit to combine all of my passions into one role. I’m also passionate about makeup; I have obtained incredible experience and knowledge in makeup & skincare with a work history from Sephora and Dior Cosmetics.

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

My mentor and inspiration is my Mother, Lisa. She has a huge heart, but she’s also incredibly strong. I think it’s great when someone can master having two qualities like kindness and strength. There’s often a line between the two, but she’s always known how to give a kind word when needed, but still push me to be the best version of myself at the same time. I love her for that. 

My favorite thing about working at Vanguard Slidell, A Paul Mitchell Partner School is…

As a Vanguard Team Member you have the ability to create opportunities for yourself. If you want reach a goal, you just push yourself and do what you have to do to get there. You will not only achieve what you set out to do, but you’ll do so with an entire team backing you. There is nothing more incredible than having a group of people that support you, genuinely care about you & want to celebrate your success, I think that sets us apart as a company.

To me, living beautifully means…

To me living beautifully means being a light for your peers. There’s a quote I absolutely love that says “Be somebody that makes everyone feel like somebody.” I think that’s really powerful. Of course living beautifully could be classified as wearing a beautiful lipstick or having really great hair, but I think creating positive energy and giving people a piece of that is truly living beautifully.

Melissa Tierney

Executive Director

Experience in education…

I have been involved in cosmetology school education for eight and a half years.

 

Experience in the beauty industry…

I attended Aveda for esthetics on a full scholarship. Upon graduating, I worked for the company in admissions and traveled to Alabama, Iowa, and Florida as a director of admissions and eventually as an assistant director. After deciding to move back to Louisiana, I decided there was no other option for me but to join the Vanguard/Paul Mitchell family. It has truly been life-changing!

 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

Steve Jobs. While I did not have pleasure of ever meeting him, I am intrigued by his innovation and constant commitment to excellence. He never accepted mediocrity and pushed boundaries in every aspect of his life.

 

My favorite thing about working at Vanguard College Slidell is…

I get to make a difference in the lives of other people daily by doing what I love! Our owners foster creativity and leadership, which has been a huge motivation for me to do the same with those I lead.

 

To me, living beautifully means…

Giving selflessly to others without expecting anything at all in return, and having integrity each and every day!

 

Carolyn Gai

State Board Specialist

Experience in education…

I’ve been a licensed educator in the state of Louisiana for 36 years. I have held positions such as cosmetology educator, nail tech educator, and esthetician educator, and have also taught all specialties within the school setting. 

Experience in the beauty industry…

I’ve been licensed as a cosmetologist for 37 years and have worked in three salons. I’ve served in the capacity of cosmetologist, nail technician, and esthetician. I became a Paul Mitchell Associate and National Educator in 2001. I’ve worked as a Vanguard Team member in many capacities since 2002. 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

I have more than one. As a stylist, it is Corin Koehl—a member of Hair America and owner of salons and beauty schools. She was a very talented stylist. The other two would have to be Mark and Lisa Palermo. Both of them have given me lessons on how to be a great person and business owner and how to treat others. I could go on and on! 

My favorite thing about working at Vanguard Baton Rouge, A Paul Mitchell Partner School is…

The team and teamwork! 

To me, living beautifully means…

Doing your best to help others achieve their goals. In doing so, you make dreams come true.

Crystal Argence

Financial Aid Leader

Experience in education…

I have taught Dollar Camp class, résumé/interview classes, and Tree of Opportunity classes.

 

Experience in the beauty industry…

I was admissions leader prior to my role now.

 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

Russell Argence. He has pushed me to be the person I am today.

 

My favorite thing about working at Vanguard College Slidell is…

The positive, creative, and energetic environment as well as the people I surround myself with every day.

 

To me, living beautifully means…

To be able to wake up and do what you love to do, not what you have to do.

Heather Rene Cantrell

Admissions Leader

Experience in education…

I have many years of experience as an educator. I am a former educator with The Aveda Institute, The Salon Professional Academy, and Sephora.

 

Experience in the beauty industry…

I have 20+ years of experience. I've been behind the chair, worked as a freelance makeup artist, have served on several education teams, and now I am with admissions!

 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

My father. He taught me integrity, morals, and helped me to become the person I am today! He believed in me when no one else did, and for that I will be forever grateful. 

 

My favorite thing about working at Vanguard College Slidell is…

Working with such amazing Future Professionals. They make my job so rewarding!

 

To me, living beautifully means…

To be happy. Happiness is the key to anything, especially success!

Renee Barrios

Financial Aid Leader

Experience in education…

I teach Dollar Camp, marketing, social media, résumé, and interviewing classes to our Future Professionals.

 

Experience in the beauty industry…

I have been working for Vanguard College of Cosmetology since July 2012.  I shared my love of Paul Mitchell by recruiting Future Professionals as an Admissions Leader, and am now able to showcase our amazing culture and education as the Regional Marketing Leader.

 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

I am inspired by everyone I meet. I love learning and take in everything I can from everyone around me!

My favorite thing about working at Vanguard College Slidell is…

I love working at Vanguard because it provides me the opportunity to make a positive difference in someone else's life. I enjoy working with Future Professionals and believe that "teamwork makes the dream work."

 

To me, living beautifully means…

Living beautifully is about being happy. A happy person sees the beauty in everything and understands that you have to be happy with yourself before you can be happy with the world around you.  

Alex Andrade

Regional Admissions Leader

Experience in education…

I have over nine years of experience working in college admissions.

 

Experience in the beauty industry…

I have recently worked with a local college, helping them to open their cosmetology program. With that, I have guided over 100 students reaching toward their cosmetology career goals.

 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

My mother has always been the person who has most inspired me. She is a strong woman who raised four boys on her own and did whatever she could to make sure we had the best; giving up was never an option.

 

My favorite thing about working at Vanguard College Slidell is…

Seeing students grow creatively and professionally and change their life for the better.

 

To me, living beautifully means…

Taking advantage of the beautiful places, things, people, and ideas around us and utilizing that beauty in our lives to create tomorrow.

Erin Michelle Tracey

Regional Sales Leader, Paul Mitchell The School graduate

Experience in education…

I joined Paul Mitchell Schools in 2010 as a Core Learning Leader, and after teaching two amazing Core classes, I became the Phase Two Learning Leader. 

 

Experience in the beauty industry…

I loved inspiring and motivating Future Professionals, leading them to become professionals in this industry. I drew from my experience as a hairstylist to guide and lead an amazing Phase Two program. I had the privilege of learning under a wonderful educator, Thomas Cousins, at A Thomas Cousins Salon; he gave me the tools to become a motivated and inspired educator.

 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

I cannot say that I have a particular mentor; I would say I have so many. I never take an opportunity for granted to learn from someone else. I have had the honor of meeting and interacting with so many empowering and impactful people in my career and have taken so many lessons along the way that has molded the person I am.

 

My favorite thing about working at Vanguard College Slidell is…

The acceptance I feel from just being me and the opportunity I have to make a difference in so many people's lives.

 

To me, living beautifully means…

To me, living beautifully starts from the inside of us all. I started cosmetology school with the mindset that I will fall in love with myself, and throughout my journey and tremendous growth, I can honestly say there is no one else I would rather be and no where else I would rather be. I live life beautifully daily.

Marlo Gavin-Carter

Regional Education Leader, Paul Mitchell The School graduate

Experience in education…

I've been a cosmetology instructor for nine years, and have held the titles of Core leader, cutting specialist, Future Professional adviser, education leader, and school director.

 

Experience in the beauty industry…

I've been a licensed hairdresser for 20 years, and a salon owner for seven years.

 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

I am personally inspired by Viola Hills Williams Moses, my grandmother. Professionally, I am inspired by Stephanie Kocielski, VP of Education for JPMS.

 

My favorite thing about working at Vanguard College Slidell is…
The opportunity offered to those who are passionate about the beauty industry.

 

To me, living beautifully means…

Allowing God's light to shine through you in everything you do.

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