Former Students, Instructors at Local Cosmetology College Protest; School Responds

LUBBOCK, TX - A handful of former members of a cosmetology college in Lubbock picketed outside the school Thursday.

Many of them said they were unfairly let go by Vogue College of Cosmetology, while others complained about the quality of the education there.

Lubbock Police were called, but no arrests were made on site.

"The majority of problems have just been lack of quality of education," said former junior instructor Natasha Carglie, who said she was wrongfully terminated. "The curriculum has changed about three times in the amount of time that i was enrolled in the student instructor program."

"There was [sic] always promises to make it better, do it right, restructure, and then with that came a lot of consequences on the students. So, they were coming in expecting consistency and stability, and none of that was given to them," she explained.

Another former instructor, Mia White, said management did not properly train the students or instructors.

"I'm here because the students are not getting the proper education at all," White said. "...they're not doing their lessons, they're not studying for state board. They're not being educated at all."

The protesters said their concerns fell on deaf ears, even when they followed the protocol to file complaints.

"I was enrolled in the student instructor program, and I was asked to leave for speaking up on behalf of the students, in the way that I was told to do it," Cargile said.

"Whenever I voiced my concerns, I never got anything back from corporate," White explained.

"It's very important to make sure they're getting the proper education, because their money is being wasted," she added.

Vogue Colleges had an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau of the South Plains.

"I want the students who are here that are standing on this curb today (Thursday) to be absolutely protected, and for them to be allowed to finish their education," stated Cargile. "I also want them to get a quality of education. I want them to walk out here knowing that they are prepared for the industry."

Vogue Colleges CEO Teena Ball issued a written statement Thursday afternoon.

Please be aware that there are rumors and gossip out there that are untrue and harmful. It is important for a statement to be given on behalf of my staff and my school:
 
My number one focus has and always will be providing the best education for our students so that they graduate and become successful in their careers. Our reputation has proven to do just that over the past 9 years in the 5 schools I own in Texas and New Mexico. I am very proud of my Lubbock school and the progress it has made since we opened the doors in Sept. 2015. Anyone who visited the school knows the difference we have made in many lives and that our passion is to educate and graduate successful students. 
 
While I respect the right of others to peacefully and respectfully express  their opinion, I am saddened that anyone is or was unhappy with the education they received at Vogue College. We strive to meet the needs of all students at all times and for the most part are able to do so but we cannot make all the people happy all the time. Generally we have a very happy student body and I have spoken many of them this week and in the weeks past through surveys and in formal meetings. We address concerns as they arise in the school. It’s our job to listen to feedback and improve our education for our students.
 
I fully support my Director, AJ Whitaker, and my staff. They are the reason for the school’s success. It’s a fun and an exciting place to be filled with learning activities.  I strive to keep all my campuses a safe and positive environment
for students as many students want and need that positive place to learn successfully.  We participate in the community through service learning events and give back to our community. Last year Mr. Whitaker was invited to the Texas Tech Fashion Show with our students providing them the opportunity to experience the runaway fashion styling of hair and makeup on all of the models. This is just one example of extraordinary education we provide above and beyond the classroom and practical salon floor.
Ball added below her statement that she was "always willing to meet with any current student individually as to their educational needs and have been on campus all week to do so."
 
"We also have a formal grievance process if any student wishes to file a formal grievance," she stated.

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