Senior Edwin Orellana has grown up his whole life surrounded by family businesses. During his junior year, Orellana decided to take the next step into his future career. His passion for cosmetology has allowed him to learn new skills and be prepared for what’s to come out of high school.
“To be honest, since my mom is a cosmetologist I’ve been seeing her do it ever since I was little so I’ve always been around it and I’ve always liked it,” Orellana said.
Orellana’s parents own a clothing store, a beauty salon, and a body shop all in Springdale. Beginning junior year, Orellana set out to learn how to do nails. Orellana has learned a variety of skills such as how to do gel manicures and applying acrylic nails.
“I took a private course with one of my mom’s friends and then my friend Kaitlynn and I are enrolling to Paul Mitchell so we’ve been doing all the paperwork for that,” Orellana said. “Before COVID-19 we were supposed to go to Paul Mitchell and do some volunteering since they won’t take us in until we graduate but that’s where we both want to go after high school.”
School has also been a vital part of Orellana’s journey. His high school career has helped him gain vital skills to help in his future career. Orellana has been in EAST for the past 7 years where he has had the opportunity to help lead, manage, and learn from not only students within our school district but also with community partners.
“School has definitely helped me get more leadership because before I was in high school, I didn’t really step up at all,” Orellana said. “One of the classes that have helped me the most is EAST. EAST gives me a lot of leadership opportunities and then I can come back and use those skills in the family business.”
Senior Kaitlynn Gollnick has also picked up an interest in cosmetology. Both Orellana and Gollnick have been close friends for several years and are currently going through the same journey to get their cosmetology license.
“I’ve always been interested in nails and I’ve always liked having my nails done,” Gollnick said. “It makes me feel confident, so I feel that if by doing someone else’s nails and boosting their confidence, that would make me feel good as well.”
Until Orellana gets his cosmetology license, he can not work on actual clients. Meanwhile, he practices on close friends as well as mannequin hands to help him gain more experience. Junior Elle Reed is also a close friend of Orellana. She’s allowed Orellana to practice on her nails in order to let Orellana flourish his artistic skills.
“I think it’s awesome that he is going after something he is so passionate about,” Reed said. “I like going to Edwin because I believe that this is a form of art and I get to have my own personal art piece each time.”
Orellana plans to continue working alongside his parents in their businesses after high school while pursuing his cosmetology career. This journey has allowed Orellana to express himself in a creative way and look forward to life after school.
“My favorite part of doing nails is definitely the artistic side of it,” Orellana said. “Whenever I’m about to do a design or something that people ask me for I just have fun getting creative with it.”