Paul Mitchell School of Fresno grooming the next generation of barbers

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- "Barbering has been around forever, we were the original physicians and dentists," said Paul Mitchell School of Fresno barber learning director Paul G'Froerer.

It is those age-old skills of cutting and grooming men's hair, the Paul Mitchell School of Fresno is trying to pass on to the next generation of barbers. They are doing this through their Barbering program, which started a little over a year ago. School Director Erik Pedersen said it is in high demand.

"We were having so many barbers that we were turning away because we did not have that barber course and we needed to serve that market and serve that portion of our community," he said.

Cutting men's hair is not so cut and dry. Clippers are still a staple, but Barber learning director Paul G'Froerer said more and more men are opting for longer haircuts. These means more work with sheers.

"I noticed that the young kids now are growing their hair longer, it is a trend it is sort of like they don't want fades anymore because that is what their dads had," he said.

Students become skilled with a comb and scissors, but also learn how to groom beards. This includes contouring and steam towel and razor shaves. All this and more, taught in the span of 10 months. Luis Soto is four months in and knows this is where his passion lies.

"Whenever I get a cut I feel happy and I am in a great mood if I have a date coming up or a job interview anything," said Soto. "It is the joy of giving, seeing other people expressions and how they feel when you are done with their clean and cut."

Part of the program also involves giving back to the community, through free haircuts. Sometimes for veterans, the homeless or at events. Carrie Reed has a giving heart and when she is done, she wants to donate her skills to non-profits.

"So many people when they are down and out, maybe you have a single mom and she's working and stressed out and if I can just have her sit down in my chair and say, "you know what? Just talk to me, let it all out, I am going to make you feel like a queen."," she said.

The barbering program is a 15-hundred hour course and the school is currently accepting applicants.
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