New Beauty Apprenticeship to Allow Incoming Therapists to Train While They Work

Roll out of the Diploma of Beauty Therapy as an apprenticeship has officially kicked off in Queensland. 

News of the impending educational offering was first reported by Professional Beauty last year, however details on the course have only now been released. Professional Beauty can confirm funding for this apprenticeship will be provided by The Queensland Department of Employment, Small Business and Training (DESBT).

The DESBT has agreed to fund 100 percent of the apprenticeship, to the value of up to $AU11,050. This funding will be allocated to the training provider.

The first training provider of the course has been announced as Katrina’s School of Hair and Beauty.

On speaking with Dominique Lamb, Chief Executive of The National Retail Association, PB learns that the Diploma of Beauty Therapy as an apprenticeship is aimed at widening the pool of beauty therapy applicants in line with the current employment shortage affecting aesthetic businesses. 

“Beauty practitioners are a very sought-after profession, and the apprenticeship is a solution to the employment shortage by allowing businesses to employ people with a keen interest in the industry who are not yet trained or qualified,” Dominique said.

By combining off-site training with on-the-job experience, employment in the sector will become more appealing. “Apprentices learn the interpersonal skills of consulting with clients to provide tailored services and advice, make recommendations on treatments and sell retail products. They are also afforded opportunities to apply theory in the clinical environment, and under the guidance of their employer, become equipped in the technical and business operations of the salon.”

The program also aims to standardise training, and to further regulate an increasingly unregulated beauty industry. “Accredited training is crucial,” says Dominique. “The apprenticeship creates a benchmark for a high standard and consistent quality of services delivered throughout the team. Upskilling staff with a comprehensive training approach increases the value of the skills gained not just in a business, but the industry as whole. This works to make salons more reputable, well-regarded and sought-after.”

Recognising the increase in demand for more “advanced, technical and invasive treatments”, Dominique believes “it is vital, with the technical and scientific level of knowledge and skill required to diagnose and treat skin disorders and to prescribe clinical grade skincare and treatments safely, that an employee is fully skilled and trained.”

“It is also an expectation of consumers that Beauty Services workers have high skill levels with technical and theoretical knowledge. There is a great amount of education and expertise required to work in the industry. The Beauty Services Industry Reference Group (IRG), who made this program possible, recognised this need and acknowledged that the best pathway for training and employment would be the implementation of an apprenticeship at Diploma level.”

The Diploma of Beauty as an apprenticeship as a formal training pathway will help secure and safeguard the industry’s integrity. [It] will give the employee an opportunity to learn on the job, grow with the business and have support from other team members who already have experience. It bridges the gap between study and the level of skill needed for real-life work scenarios.

The Diploma of Beauty as an Apprenticeship as a formal training pathway will help secure and safeguard the industry’s integrity.”

Dominique shares details on what to expect and how staff can register:

Who can sign up?

“The apprenticeship is offered to anyone with an interest in becoming a fully trained beauty therapist. This includes students, current practitioners and people looking for a career change.

For school students, they need to be employed at a salon and be working a minimum of 7.5 hours per week (averaged over a 3-month period). Typically, this involves working one day per week during the schooling week, but they can also work evenings, weekends and school holidays (all paid of course!).

Part time and full time apprentices are employed as per any other part time or full time employee (casual employees are not eligible for the apprenticeship).”

Is the course running throughout Australia?

“The apprenticeship is currently only on offer in Queensland. To register the applicant must be employed in a salon or clinic environment that operates within the state.

Once undertaking the apprenticeship, the apprentice needs to be signed under a national training contract through the Australian Apprenticeship Support Network (AASN).”

How long does the course run for?

“It is delivered over a course of three years – an increase from one year that is currently offered with the Diploma of Beauty Therapy (excluding the apprenticeship component). Assessment for both the Diploma and the Diploma as an Apprenticeship is the same across the board.”

What can students expect from the course?

“The apprenticeship offered through Katrina’s School of Hair and Beauty is a mix of 60% workplace training and 40% online theory modules.”

What is the cost of the course to students?

“The outright cost for apprentices is $270 per 3 month term, which funds the administrative components of the course*.”

*This cost for students is subject to change through time and will vary depending on the training provider. The amount above is the current student fee charged by Katrina’s School of Hair and Beauty.

What is the cost of the course to employers?

Nothing. “The employer pays the apprentice a wage as per usual regulations.”

What is the cut-off date for enrolment?

“There are no cut-off dates for enrolment with Katrina’s – apprentices may enroll at any time throughout the year.”

How can individuals register?

To register for the apprenticeship, contact:

Jennifer Champion

Industry Skills Advisor, National Retail Association

P: 1800 738 245 | 0431 062 293



Michelle Lobban

School Principal, Katrina’s School of Hair and Beauty

P: 07 5428 1110


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