Started with $1600 now worth $30 million!

- July 20, 2011 4 MIN READ

The Australasian College-Broadway (the College) was established by Maureen Houssein-Mustafa in 1994.  A wholly Australian owned company, it is now recognised as the benchmark College in Australia offering Nails, Beauty, Makeup, Hairdressing, and Business Management qualifications all under one roof.  Not one to rest on its laurels, this year the College is extending its offerings to include Aged Care, English and a number of other qualifications, each with a pathway to Higher Education.

Maureen commenced the College with a $1,600 outlay, and the school had only 6 students when it first opened its doors.  Nearly 17 years on and the College has now been independently valued at $30 million.  It has the capacity to accommodate 1500 domestic and international students, taking courses across different skill areas yearly. The recent expansion of the premises which spans over 8,500 sq metres, makes it the largest private hair and beauty college in Australia.

The College is a Registered Training Organisation (RTO) accredited by VETAB (NSW Vocational Education and Training Accreditation Board) and is able to deliver over 23 nationally endorsed qualifications.  Built on Maureen’s philosophy of industry excellence, the College was the first Private RTO to be awarded the prestigious Training Provider of the Year in 2000 by the NSW Department of Education and Training.  For two years running the College won the “Battle of the Colleges” as judged by the International Hairstylists Society.  In 2009 the College was also selected as a Finalist in the Telstra Business of the Year Awards in New South Wales, a proud moment for everyone.

With 98+ multicultural educators and staff, who among them speak 28 different languages, Maureen has selected the very best team of professionals and Industry achievers.  Many of the staff have worked internationally which allows them to provide students with innovative and extensive training backed by their years of Industry experience. The College prides itself on the accommodating work conditions offered to staff such as working remotely, flexible work hours, being able to bring children to work during school holidays, and offering equal opportunity to staff of all backgrounds and ages (which range from 18 to 75 years of age).

The College designs courses that range in cost from $950 to $29,500 to suit each student’s needs and career goals.  It also provides job placement assistance and works as a Free Placement Service to the Hair and Beauty Industries.  The College also mentors those with aspirations to start their own business.

With over 4,000 successful work placements to date, the College’s record of consistently providing highly trained staff to Industry reflects the emphasis placed on students being ‘Industry ready’ when they enter the workforce.  All courses are delivered using the principles of competency based training and the College is very focused in its role of taking responsibility for training tomorrow’s professionals.

The College was the first Hair and Beauty training facility to be approved by the Government as a VET FEE-HELP provider, joining a small handful of private Colleges in Australia with this status.  VET FEE-HELP, which is an income contingent loan scheme, allows students to study VET (vocational education and training) accredited Diploma, Advanced Diploma, Graduate Certificate and Graduate Diploma hair and beauty therapy courses and only pay their tuition loan once their income reaches the minimum threshold level for repayment.  All courses offered under the VET FEE-HELP scheme provide a pathway to University qualifications.

As such, the College is continuing its commitment to being the best in the business. From 2009 the College began offering specialised business management courses, and excitingly University pathways where courses studied at the College provide credits via Diploma courses that can articulate to Degree qualifications in Bachelor of Business (Small Business and Entrepreneurship) and Bachelor of Health Science (Dermal Therapies) through an alliance with Victoria University and Bachelors of Commerce or Accounting with Raffles School of Design and Commerce.

In order for students to acquire practical, workplace skills, the College opens its doors to the public for free treatments including haircuts, manicures, pedicures, artificial nails, waxing and tinting, with a nominal fee for product heavy treatments such as facials, massages, hair colouring, perms, hair straightening, sets, re-styling, make-up and makeovers.  On average, the College completes treatments on over 700 clients per week.

Coming from a challenging background herself, Maureen has instilled a culture of giving back at the College.  Staff and students get involved in raising funds, donating free hair and beauty services, hosting career days and providing VIP passes to beneficiaries from many non profit organisations.

Maureen has a particular interest in supporting the people of Glebe, Redfern and Broadway.  These are the people that have supported the College from day one and Maureen has sought to repay that support.  In 2010 the College formed a strong alliance with NASCA (National Aboriginal Sporting Chance Academy) and the Indigenous community to provide ongoing vocational scholarships to support NASCA’s Career Aspirations Program (CAP) as part of the College’s ‘giving back to community’ initiative.  The initial program which saw 13 Aboriginal girls qualify with Certificate II in Nail Technology was an overwhelming success and 8 participants have continued their studies at the College with one participant now working alongside her educator as a fulltime employee.

The College continues its lead role in Industry and this year has again raised funds and provided intensive training for our International representative for World Skills, a forum which develops awareness of and respect for trade skills excellence both nationally and internationally via highly competitive skill competence testing competitions.

For further information regarding The Australasian College-Broadway visit www.australasiancollege.com.au or call 02 9571 8288.