Keen to continue an ongoing home-grown pool of Dandy talent, founder, Shane O’Shaughnessy has launched a new scheme to give his student barbers a strong grounding and introduction to quality barbering ‘on the job’.
From Tuesday 13th October both Irongate and Nottingham branches of The Dandy Gent will be offering a limited number of free haircuts to the public, carried out by its students. This is an additional stage of learning serving as forerunner to the current Apprenticeship period where a small fee is charged for services by students who have successfully reached a standard approved by Shane.
The first Student Barber is 25 year old Dean (pictured below) who volunteered to help out at the Irongate branch in 2019 – in return for some valuable training. Whilst volunteering Dean was on a part-time NVQ intermediate barbering course earning his level 2.5 qualification.
“I’m thrilled to get this opportunity with Shane and the team. I’ve built up a lot of confidence in the shop over the past few months, but am eager to gain much more experience before I feel ready to go to the next level.” Said Dean.
Proving that student barbers come in all shapes, sizes – and ages, Sarah (aged considerably older than Dean!!), Manager of the Nottingham branch and Marketing Manager for The Dandy Gent, is also eager to build on her new-found knowledge following an intensive educational programme at Nottingham’s renowned Sid Sottung Academy. Sarah has worked in and around The Dandy Gent’s three barber shops building the brand for some 4 years now – and has certainly got the barbering bug following her post-lockdown ‘epiphany’.
Said Shane “The key to success for any barbershop is its people. We want to keep our students engaged and help them hone their skills and techniques quickly and confidently whilst learning to fit into our organisation and develop their talents to our high standards. Importantly too, the scheme helps us to provide a quality service to those who are struggling financially at this time.” Said Shane. “Our students will be monitored all the way and all haircuts will be inspected before clients leave our shops, to ensure they leave having had a professional service and with a great looking haircut or beard trim.”
Continued Dean, “Having someone you look up to on hand to check and advise during the service really helps give you confidence to work freely – I’m looking forward to giving a good service and just getting better and better. I hope customers will get behind us and trust us with their hair. We will take longer than a fully qualified barber – but we will never let them leave unhappy.”
Currently The Dandy Gent has one apprentice in its team, Tate O’Shaughnessy (pictured top), who is still in his first year in the role. Prior to Tate, Shane has educated successful Dandy barbers Lauren Pell, Stu Parker and Shaun Hoolan, through the apprenticeship scheme.
“It’s a great feeling to see absolute beginners of all ages taking up barbering and then earning a decent living at it.” Said Shane. “We’ll be advertising the new free student barber cuts and Tate’s apprentice service wherever possible now and hope local people will help us to invest in them. We also have our latest recruit, Erin in the early stages of training at Irongate too. All in all I’m pretty confident we now have four strong new Dandy Gent barbers in the making.” He concluded.
Anyone interested in a free student haircut or beard trim can book Dean at the Irongate, Derby branch or Sarah at the Nottingham branch on Tuesdays and Wednesdays via TheDandyGent.nearcut.com. Apprentice cuts and beard trims are available with Tate for £5 per service Monday to Saturday via the app too.