River Bend Career and Technical Center is very proud of one of the youngest business owners in the Upper Valley! We salute Courtney Derrington, who has recently opened her hair salon, “TEASE”, on Central Street in Woodsville, New Hampshire! Courtney is a 2017 graduate of the Cosmetology program at River Bend and Woodsville High School. Now she is able to share her artistic abilities, skills and techniques with the world!
It is an interesting story as to how Courtney made the decision to pursue her love of cosmetology. In high school, initially, this was not the direction that she was first headed in for a career choice. Her older sister, Brittany, was excited to be studying health careers while in high school. Brittany attended River Bend Career and Technical Center(RBCTC) in the Health Sciences program and was an outstanding student in that program, as well as a student leader throughout the Center. Courtney hoped to follow in her sister’s footsteps as she became eligible to take classes at RBCTC. As the time to start approached, she started to think about what really excited her about different careers. She also listened to her mom, who had always been interested in the field of cosmetology, but never followed up on the interest, other than for her own use. As she thought back to earlier experiences, she remembered the satisfaction she got by getting other girls ready for school dances and special events by doing their hair styles. One memory in particular was of the Haverhill Middle School Winter Carnival Dance at Alumni Hall in 8th grade. As a high school basketball player, she found herself enjoying braiding the other girls’ hair before games. Others came to her for help and advice on styles, make-up, and color. As she put all of these events together, she knew she had found her passion for the future!
During her two years at RBCTC, she learned so much about the field of cosmetology, and knew she was on the right track! Nails, hair-cutting, color, fashion, business management, science of the skin and scalp, effective communications, face shapes, product chemistry, basic massage, and pedicures were just some of the topics in the program. During her second year, Courtney was required to develop a comprehensive business plan for starting her own shop, complete with a scale model diorama of her design. The name of her salon in this assignment was “TEASE”! She spent most of the whole senior year developing her plan. Her cosmetology teacher, Patti Eaton, remarked that Courtney was one of those true naturals in this field, who really understood what she was doing and had a great personality and caring for others to go along with it. She graduated from River Bend with almost 200 transferable hours toward her license, and was an outstanding student in the program, as well as her positive involvement around the Center. This experience gave Courtney a solid foundation in the field for her next step.
Courtney started her next chapter in September 2017 when she entered The New England School of Hair Design in Lebanon, New Hampshire. This program ran from Tuesday through Saturday each week and Courtney “hit the ground running”! Each course was structured in competency-based modules with rubrics, allowing her to progress rapidly because of her experience at River Bend. By December, she had completed what was required to be actually cutting hair and working with clients in the New England Salon, which was ahead of schedule compared with many of her fellow students. Her time at the New England School of Hair Design really helped her with effective communications, learning to work with all types of personalities, and to love what she was doing!
She completed her program in August 2018, and about a month later her grandfather, a business person by nature, called and made her aware of a salon that was available to rent in Woodsville. His encouragement, plus the great moral support of her family, prompted her to look into all aspects of starting her own business. She called the owner and found out more details, and the next thing she knew, her mom, dad, and grandparents were all pitching in to help paint, put down a new floor and add all of the touches that make “TEASE” the bright and stylish salon that it is today!
Courtney opened the doors to “TEASE” on December 8th, and already business is great! She is open from Monday through Saturday from 9 to 5, and she takes appointments, (603) 243-0606, as well as walk-ins. She has even been known to open up on a Sunday for a special need! At the present time, she is offering cuts, colors and up-styles for women and men. You can follow the growth of “TEASE” on Facebook. River Bend Career and Technical Center is proud to salute Courtney Derrington, and wish her continued success!