Somerset Vo-Tech cosmetology rooms get make-over thanks to a salon owner’s donation

October 15th, 2013

Over the summer, Somerset County Vocational & Technical High School in Bridgewater underwent a number of “face lifts” prior to the return of the students.  Topping the list of “make-overs” was the cosmetology program’s two classrooms.

The high school was recipient of a large donation, made possible by Joseph Tran, owner of Paradigm Salon, in Newtown, Pa.

Tran was looking to renovate and relocate his salon and spa, but rather than phasing out his “like-new” existing equipment or selling it, he wanted to donate the entire salon to those interested in learning and working in the field.

Somerset County was able to capitalize on this opportunity, with school administrators retrieving the equipment and planning for the future retrofit.  The total donation was estimated to exceed $200,000 and included styling, coloring and manicure stations plus a myriad of items such as chairs, lighting and shelving.

The timing of the donation could not have been better, as Somerset County Vocational & Technical High School’s salon equipment was showing signs of age, and budgetary restraints would not support the needed improvements, according to a school news release.  The donation helped the school leverage other county and federal grant funds to complete the much needed project.

The school’s buildings and grounds staff worked to finish the project by the start of school and their efforts were rewarded when the teachers and students witnessed the transformation.

“Mr. Tran’s generous and altruistic gift will benefit the field for many years to come, as the cosmetology program is one of our most desirable and, sought after programs of study,” Superintendent Chrys Harttraft said.  “Somerset County Vocational & Technical High School is deeply grateful to Mr. Tran for his much appreciated donation.”

Upon completion of the project, the remaining equipment was donated to other schools, expanding the benefits to Burlington, Camden and Hunterdon County vocational technical schools.

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