Day 1: Education

Considering coming into the Spa Industry? Diane Hey shares advice for school years 11-13 and individuals over 19.

The below text gives a summary of an interview with Diane Hey, an employer, education provider and board advisor. For the full interview, please click above to watch the video.

If anyone's considering working in the Spa industry, what course titles do they need to be looking at?

There are a number of entry points in regard to becoming qualified within the sector. If we're predominantly looking at year 11, and year 13, candidates, my advice would be to actually think about what is the job that you think you might want to go into at this stage, and talk to some employers, attend the careers road shows, and speak to people to find out how they got, where they got to, and what journeys they’ve had. 

If you are going to do a qualification to entry, quite often in our sector, it will start with a beauty therapy qualification or a related qualification within the beauty industry. You also have an apprenticeship pathway, which is obviously employment with an apprenticeship embedded, undertaking new knowledge, skills and behaviours that you require for competency on the job role. 

Equally you have access to university programs if you're not wanting to be a practitioner focused individual but you want to work in the broader sector so then you would be looking at UCAS for applications to university. The qualification provider will be able to give a progression pathway. 

So the two points of entry would be UCAS, which is University, the National Apprenticeship Service will hold all the vacancies for an apprenticeship access in England, and there are other application processes in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales.

If somebody is 19+ and trying to choose an industry qualification, what do they need to be aware of?

Choose wisely and if you are paying for provision, check what you are paying for. There's a lot of confusion about the difference between accredited programs and regulated provision. And you what you really need to make sure of is that you have a base-line regulated qualification. Any certificate that is regulated and issued by an awarding body of a regulated pathway will have those stamps of approval on the certificate (e.g. Ofstead). 

We have four National regulators in the UK. In England, we have Ofqual regulator, qualification Wales in Wales, the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) in Scotland and the CCEA in Northern Ireland. 

If we've got any students that are wanting to come into industry, but perhaps their parents are nervous about them coming into the industry, what would you say to the parents?

I absolutely hear them. I'm a parent myself. We have got a bit of a stereotypical journey that we've had in the sector, that it's possibly not the best career pathway. I think COVID has helped that because it's raised the profile and the professionalism of the sector, and the earning capacity within that.

There is a career progression into higher levels of both academia, but also in management and other activities within the myriad of job opportunities that there are within the sector and lots of people, you know, pathway on to other things, they they will, they will progress into other areas as they move up above that sort of career progression pathway.

We work in beautiful places. And we're very privileged and actually we're one of the happiest people in our job roles.

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