THE NEXT LEVEL OF SALON PROFESSIONAL™ At The Salon Professional Academy (TSPA) we believe that pursuing an education in the professional beauty industry is the first step to discovering a career filled with creativity and endless opportunity. Our goal is to maximize your artistic potential through a program that teaches not only the latest techniques, but also proven business and marketing strategies. TSPA’s quality education can significantly improve your earning potential and prepare you for a long-term future in the industry.
- Our curriculum and training has been co-developed and continually updated with help from REDKEN 5th Avenue NYC. This ongoing collaboration translates to education that is some of the most relevant, trending and compelling in the industry.
- Our approach to personal, hands-on training includes smaller class-sizes that enable more interaction and one-on-one time with educators.
- We continually train and support the educators who instruct you in the skills you’ll need for a successful and rewarding career.
- Our beautiful, innovative Academy locations provide a positive, real-world learning environment.
- In addition to technical skills, TSPA develops your ability to grow clientele and bookings, increase retail sales, and build lasting guest relationships – abilities that put you in high demand with top salons.
- We make the privately-held salons and spas, where incomes are highest, a target for placement. Area salon and spa owners serve on our advisory boards and recruit from our school. Additionally, we have relationships for placement with more than 6,000 Redken Club 5th Avenue salons across all 50 states.
The Team at The Salon Professional Academy brings many talents to our Academy. Our team has participated in training with Michael Cole, Chris Baran Principal Based Design, Symposium, RAC and many other Redken artists to achieve the highest level of training to keep up to date and progressive in our training for you!
Our Administrative Staff is here to assist in making your enrollment process an easy and comfortable experience. From assistance with filling out your FAFSA, to your first day of school, we hope you will feel like our knowledgeable team can provide you with all the information you need to make your enjoyable!
Marla Knapp - Owner and Academy Director
Marla Knapp has been the proud owner of A Total New You Salon & Day Spa for 26 years. Marla, along with partners Greg Chavez and Kitty Victor, opened The Salon Professional Academy-Colorado Springs in March 2006. Since then, hundreds of cosmetologists, estheticians, and nail technicians have graduated. At The Salon Professional Academy students are taught the Summit Salon Systems--the business side of being a successful beauty industry professional, as well as the technical skills that are required. Marla believes this puts the graduating students in high demand for salon placement.
Pat Parenty, the president of Redken, nominated Marla in 2008 as Global Salon Business Awards Entrepreneur of the Year. She stays active in all aspects of the academy--always with an open door.
Jessica Obert - Director of Admissions
Jessica Obert began her career with The Salon Professional Academy in September of 2016 as Director of Admissions. Her love for the industry combined with her desire to help others recognize their value and strength to achieve their dreams has been the driving force behind her position.
Jessica brings over 15 years of Admissions experience to The Salon Professional Academy as well as 8 years experience serving her country in The United States Army. She understands the importance of listening to students and assisting them in reaching there goals to become successful graduates.
Misty Highstead - Financial Aid Administrator
Misty Highstead has worked at The Salon Professional Academy since March of 2012 in the position of Financial Aid Administrator. During this time, she also became The Academy’s Veteran’s Assistance Certifying Official, Financial Aid Director, Campus Safety Coordinator, and Compliance officer. Misty currently handles our social networking forums. She is also currently pursuing a BSW in Social Work through Colorado State University in Pueblo, CO.
Misty has a passion to see people in our community grow and thrive, utilizing student grants and loans to enable equal access to education for students of all socioeconomic backgrounds.
Heather Holder - Lead Educator
“My job is exciting and rewarding I love sharing my knowledge and watching our students succeed”
Heather Holder dedicated herself to keeping the educational quality of Cosmetology at its highest level. In 2004 she became an Educator. Heather has been employed at The Salon Professional Academy in Colorado Springs since 2011 and is currently the Lead Educator and assists the Director in the Academy’s day to day operations.
Heather is an active member of the AACS (American Association of Cosmetology Schools) and has current training with NACCAS (National Accrediting Commission of Career Arts and Science). She consistently attends a wide scope of continuing education classes, many of which include Redken Color, Haircutting and Styling to stay updated and abreast of our changing industry. Heather is extremely passionate for excellence in education and has high expectations for all our students.
Over a decade ago, The Salon Professional Academy joined forces with Redken 5th Avenue NYC to develop a salon and cosmetology franchise that has changed the industry. Redken and TSPA collaborated to redesign what a “beauty school” was from the ground up – revisiting everything from the way things were taught to how the student salon area looked and functioned. The result was a ultra-modern training facility providing students with skills beyond what they do behind the chair; skills that prepare them for a professional, successful career.
This exclusive award is earned for the commitment to, and delivery of, Redken’s advanced education protocols and standards. This recognition can only be earned by successfully completing a rigorous examination of the Academy’s facility, systems, curriculum, and staff.
With a commitment to industry-leading education, business skills that prepare students for more than passing state boards, and a desire to see our students surpass all expectations for this profession, Redken has provided The Salon Professional Academy franchise locations the exclusive designation of “Recognized by Redken for Excellence in Education.”
“The quality of education that a TSPA academy provides is beyond any beauty school I have ever experienced. What I value as a salon owner is when a TSPA student comes in for a position at our salon they are trained on the level system, understand the importance of retail, and most importantly, their skill level is exceptional. Here is the reality, it is important a graduating TSPA student understands the importance of not only how to sell retail but also how to sell themselves. The added benefit of the business-building education that TSPAs bring to the student is financial security.” Leah FreemanInternational Redken Artist, Salon Owner
“To have a passion in life is one of the strongest emotions we can have, to experience it every day is a gift, and to earn our living doing it is the blessing only few of us discover… hairdressing for me is all of the above. If being a salon professional is your dream then realize it in the capable hands of the Educators at The Salon Professional Academy, recognized by Redken 5th Avenue NYC. It’s the place to be to learn what you need to enable you to live better and earn better. You will leave school with intense enthusiasm, continued support and a stronger passion for one of the best professions that can take you to where you want to be.” Kris SorbieRedken Education Artistic Director and President Kris Sorbie LLC, NYC
“Being that the TSPA academy is a Redken recognized academy, I believe that the principles that make Redken a huge success in education are easy to recognize when you’re experiencing the academy. I'm excited to see what we will witness in our profession in the near future because I know that the principles I've learned have changed my career and life. Now, seeing our youth start with these skills is very exciting to see unfold. The quality that a TSPA academy creates is a salon professional that is more technically skilled and is more career-focused, over all a better professional ready out of school.” Hugo UriasRedken Artist, FUEL Facilitator, Hairdresser for 20 years
“I have been working with the educators at TSPA for many years. The difference is in the educators. They say… ‘the bigger the party, the more people show up.’ TSPA schools attract passionate, committed professionals who love teaching others what they've learned. You can feel their commitment in everything they do and that translates to the TSPA graduate in more confidence, better skill retention, and at the end of the day - more earning power.” Scot ShermanFormer Redken Artist, Salon Owner
“The combination of strong technical skills and unique business building essentials make TSPA one of the top education facilities in the country. Students are provided the opportunity to gain skill excellence from amazing instructors as well as internationally recognized guest artists from across the country. When students graduate from TSPA they are fueled with a skill set to build a solid foundation behind the chair.” Ryan MorganRedken Artist, Redken Exchange Facilitator
“Exclusive training and unforgettable moments are in store for the student that attends The Salon Professional Academy. [They] offer top-notch education that will create healthy habits early on in your career behind the chair, as well as, more money in your wallet for the rest of your life. The point of difference with TSPA is this: While you are building your technical skill, you aren’t just learning to pass the State Board exams, you are learning how to build, run and grow a business.” Jayson MorganRedken Certified Designer & Colorist, Salon Owner
“Beauty schools are a great way for students to learn practical cosmetology skills while simultaneously preparing themselves for a rewarding career path and there is only one that I recommend and that is The Salon Professional Academy. In today’s world of cosmetology schools there is no better school that trains a student for the salon community then TSPA. TSPA schools teach technical skills, as well as solid business skills to support any salon, as the school atmosphere is professional and conducive to the achievement of excellence by student and faculty alike based on learner-focused education. The educators at TSPA find the knowledge and guidance to prepare a cosmetology student for a long successful future in the cosmetology field. The staff and management of TSPA schools instill the student with confidence to succeed in the professional salon industry.” Sam VillaRedken Education Artistic Director, Platform Artist
“I am thoroughly impressed by the well-rounded skills of the students that The Salon Professional Academy provides our industry. And as an owner, it is refreshing to hire students that are so well prepared.” Phil LeeRedken Educator, Salon Owner
“TSPA is undoubtedly the finest and most thorough academy for coaching and grooming the hairdressers of tomorrow! By not only learning your new hair skills from the industry's best, most experienced instructors, but also how to combine them with essential business strategies, you will be fully prepared for success!” Kenny BerkRedken Artist, 35 years industry experience
“I believe the Salon Professional Academies are some of the finest schools available in our industry. They have an excellent education philosophy and [their] curriculum stands out; providing their students with a complete cosmetology experience and prepares them for a great career in this industry.” Patrick ParentyPresident L’Oréal Professional Products Division, USA
The decision on choosing the correct academy to fast track your hairdressing career can be ominous. I think that means hard! LOL. Seriously, as the Artistic Director for Redken, President of Fuel Education and hairdresser for 47 years, I’ve traveled the world, taught and performed in 27 different countries. There is one common thing in the hairdressing industry… your “Learning to Earning” ratio. Simply put, the more you learn and the higher the quality of your learning – the more you earn.
TSPA is affiliated with education-centric companies like Redken and Fuel Education Systems that train and help to produce the finest TSPA educators with the highest standards of education in the industry – bar none. How does that affect you? The best educators produce the best students. Salon owners want graduates who are salon-area ready with minimal post-academy training.
TSPA understands your need to be grounded in the Principles of Design, Finish and Color upon entering your first salon. They help ground you in those principles and ready you for that position behind the chair; and TSPA has one of the highest rates of job placement …and after all that is the point, isn’t it Chris BaranEducation Artistic Director - Redken
As an educator for Redken (and as a working hairdresser), I have trained and worked with thousands of hairdressers in salons and schools all over the nation. No matter where I am, I can always tell a "TSPA" graduate because they are consistently one step ahead of their peers - in skills, professionalism, and customer service. Jesse LinaresRedken Artist, Artistic Director - The Studio by Studio Gaven