Jennifer Cowan, a cosmetology student at Olympian University in Albuquerque made hair-raising history when she captured 1st place in the Fantasy Hair category of the Student Hair competition at the regional Educational Forum in Fort Worth, Texas.

Not only is it the first time an Albuquerque student has placed in the competition, Cowan had only been attending the school two months when she decided to compete.

"Jennifer came to me and asked if she could enter," said Sheridan Jobe, the Phase II instructor at the Albuquerque cosmetology school. "Most students are a lot further along in their training when they compete, but I told her as long as she was willing to work, I was willing to work with her."

Cowan is the first student Jobe has trained for the competition since he left the award-winning Olympian University school in Roswell. The Roswell cosmetology school has consistently placed in all three areas of competition for several years. Now that Cowan has brought home a first-place trophy and hundreds of dollars of merchandise for winning the competition, Jobe said expects more students from Albuquerque will compete and win.

"Jennifer's hard work and dedication showed the sky is the limit in the exciting and creative profession of beauty," said Jobe. "By winning this competition she helped put our Olympian University in Albuquerque on the map!"

The contestants in the fantasy category are encouraged to pull out the stops on their themed entry to create a hair and makeup idea on a mannequin that would wow the judges, spectators and fellow students. Each entry was judged based on creativity, originality, innovation, color and theme.

Cowan created an "Under the Water" theme. On one side of the mannequin Cowan fashioned colorful curls that simulated undulating waves. Once the curls were in place, Cowan placed seashells, fish and other marine decorations to complete the nautical-inspired tresses, as well as hide the bobby pins to keep the curls in place. To add more texture and variety she incorporated seaweed and seaweed-inspired lace on the opposite side of the mannequin.

For skin makeup Cowan meticulously blended more than seven shades of colors from chartreuse to magenta to capture the iridescent hues of the sea. The mannequin's light brown eyes were accented with aquamarine lashes and the lips were splashed with sparkling shades of crimson. A bubbly-looking cerulean necklace also added to the nautically-inspired creation.

Jobe said the judges were not only impressed with Cowan's creativity, determination and meticulous blending techniques for makeup, but for her strict adherence to the competition's guidelines.
"Being able to follow directions is not only important at cosmetology school, but in the real world when you are working on clients," said Jobe. "We are very proud of Jennifer and the winning trend she has created for us in Albuquerque."

Olympian University is a cosmetology school that provides students with a distinguished environment that mirrors many of the upscale salons that will employ Olympian University students after they graduate and earn their cosmetology license.

In addition to the Albuquerque school the company owns and operates schools in Alamogordo, Las Cruces and Roswell in New Mexico, ITS Academy of Beauty schools in Texas and Oklahoma, International Academy of Hair Design in Arizona and Hair Benders Academy in Longwood, Florida.

For more information visit www.beautyschoolrocks.com or call 505-765-1044.