Profile: Zoe Hodgkiss

Zoe Hodgkiss, who is 25 and lives in Yeovil, trained at Strode to become a qualified hairdresser and make-up and nail technician. She is a great example of how good training, hard work and enthusiasm can lead to a varied, interesting and exciting career in the hair and beauty industry. 

After leaving Strode, Zoe worked in a local salon for two years gaining confidence and experience. She then joined P&O Cruise ships for four years of hair and beauty on the high seas in the Caribbean, Mediterranean and America. And now, Zoe is heading off to Australia for a couple of years to gain international work experience.  

"I always wanted to work on cruise ships, and the two years in the local salon gave me the confidence and skills I needed to go for it. My time on the ships was amazing - wonderful people and fantastic experiences and opportunities for work, travel and social life. I even got chosen to do hair and beauty for celebrities when GMTV filmed on my ship.  

"Work on the cruise ships is hard as the hours are long and you don't have a lot of time to work with each client. But, I learnt to work quickly without reducing the quality of my work and this will be valuable in my career, as the more clients I see the more money I will make.   

"The training I received at Strode has really helped my career. I learnt so much and the training was so thorough that I have been able to adapt easily to different situations. On the ships the American clients always ask for English stylists because they know how well they are trained.

"I'm excited about working in Australia and my future career, as I know that hair and beauty can lead to so many opportunities both abroad and at home." 

Zoe previously attended Westfield School. She gained a Level 2 NVQ Certificate in Hairdressing at Strode College that included additional training in nails and make-up.