Going from politics to prosthetics is not a normal career change for a girl under 21, but when her love of art and building up people’s confidence called her, she knew she had to take it.
At the age of 18, Cleland lass Jennifer Pike did just that – and is now winning national make-up artistry competitions just two years on.
Joining New College Lanarkshire’s HNC Make-up Artistry course in the Kirkintilloch Campus in 2016, Jennifer was nervous about the jump from BA Politics and Law at Strathclyde University, but upon seeing the dedication of her lecturers and the opportunities that would be rewarded to those who work hard enough, she knew she had made the right decision.
“I’ve always been infatuated with anything ‘artsy’ but was always unsure about pursuing it as a full-time career.
“When I left school at 18 I went straight to University to study politics and law, and as much I loved it, I knew I needed to do something to feed my passion for art.
“It was at this point I started working part-time in a salon doing make-up and found myself more engaged with learning the latest looks and techniques than studying.
“One day it just clicked and I decided that I need to do what makes me happy and not just what will pay the bills when older!
“I now study at New College Lanarkshire in the Coatbridge Campus doing HND Make-up Artistry and I know I am following the right path for me.
“I still work in a salon but also do photo shoots and make-up for events during the week surrounded by people that inspire and help me grow in this industry.
“I recently attended my first competition, the Association of Hairdressers and Therapists National competition, and was delighted to have won Gold in the Bridal category – naming me the top trainee make-up artist in the UK for bridal make-up! It’s so nice to see your hard work paying off and I couldn’t believe when I witnessed the amazing standards of work I was up against!
“The opportunities I have received since being at college have been fantastic, and I have learned so much from being here. My salon job is now booked up weeks and even months in advance thanks to the amazing experience I have gained and I am so glad that instead of being in the debating chambers, I am making people feel great about themselves.
“I would recommend the College to anyone looking for follow their dreams and make their passion a reality!”
Follow Jennifer on Facebook @jenniferpikemakeup or Instagram @jenfapikemakeup