A Teesside mum-of-two is launching a new career for herself thanks to a retrain course at Middlesbrough College.
Joanne Hayes decided to retrain for a career in beauty after being made redundant from Halifax in 2014.
The 45-year-old from Norton had been a Financial Advisor over 25 years, but has since set up a thriving beauty business.
Joanne initially enrolled on the Retrain to Beauty Therapy Level 2 course with 20 other learners after attending a College Open Event and being impressed with the beauty team and on-site spa facilities.
She explained: “I’ve always had an interest in beauty and keep up-to-date with the latest trends and techniques.
“Being made redundant gave me an opportunity to pursue a career in an industry I was passionate about.
“I was apprehensive about returning to education after so long but the course really helped me to hit the ground running and the staff were so supportive.”
Joanne enjoyed her time so much at the College that she enrolled onto the Level 3 Beauty and Spa Retrain course the following year.
Initially using family and friends to practice treatments on for course assessments, Joanne found that she was building up a large clientele base through word of mouth recommendations – all of which were willing to pay for her services.
Using Facebook to showcase her wide range of treatments to an ever-growing client base, it wasn’t long until Joanne needed a permanent base to carry out her work.
What was once an unused spare bedroom in the family home was converted into ‘Jo’s Beauty Room’, a relaxed home environment offering a wide range of treatments including massages, facials and manicures.
Jo said: “When I first enrolled on the retrain course, I never imagined I would be in a position where I would have my own business.
“I’m currently finishing my training three days a week in College, and the other two I am fully booked up with clients.
“I’m hoping to pursue this as a full-time career on completion of my course!
“It’s fantastic being able to work from home as it means I get to spend more time with my children and manage my workload around family commitments.”
Sandie Owens, Beauty Therapy Lecturer said: “It’s amazing to hear how well Jo’s business is doing.
“Our retrain courses are very popular with adult learners who are looking for a career change and it’s great to see Jo succeeding in something she is so passionate about.”