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Muskogee’s Isaiah Burkhalter-Givens ICTC Spotlight

A missed assignment on one play during a football game can be the difference in winning and losing. It’s something that Isaiah Burkhalter-Givens understands as a member of the Muskogee Roughers and a student enrolled in the cosmetology program at Indian Capital Technology Center.

“You have to be thinking ahead, be precise in your assignments when playing football as well as when you’re cutting somebody’s hair,” agreed Isaiah, who wears number 25 for the Roughers. “You can’t make a mistake ‘cause it might cost your team the victory and when your cutting hair, one mistake and you’ll lose clients for sure.”

Burkhalter-Givens at the VYPE Top 100 photoshoot

The 2022 senior, a two-way performing running back and defensive back for the Roughers football team, is one of the students enrolled in the two-year Cosmetology program at ICTC that offers students a real life learning environment.

“A lot of people think that it’s just about makeup and having fun. We do a whole lot more,” confirmed program instructor Donna Simmons, a 30-year licensed cosmetologist who brings her experiences from the salon to the classroom curriculum. “Students learn anatomy, physiology, chemistry, and structure of the hair as well as structure of the bones. We have to learn everything that health sciences have to learn and more. To complete this program students will take their state boards, practical and hands on, and take the tests just like nurses and teachers in order to get their state license.”

Simmons confirms that the theory and learn by doing curriculum is tailored to meet the likes of her students.

“Every student is different. some like aesthetics – nails, facials and makeup while others enjoy learning the different cuts of hair or how to color it the right way,” smiled Simmons. “Just like Isaiah, most of the students have set their goals for life and will work hard to achieve their dreams that will result in a good paying job.

The cosmetology program is a perfect match for Isaiah’s personality and future career desires.

“I’m a creative person, someone who loves to draw and with cutting hair, I can make my artistic talents work to my client’s advantage,” he said with a big smile. “Perms were a challenge but curling and bleaching hair is lots of fun. There’s an open door for making a lot of money – men in this field can make a lot of cash. I love it and would do it even if I wasn’t getting paid.”

His mentor confirms that Isaiah is an all-star talent.

“Isaiah came into the class ready to work. He sets the example for how to do things the right way and he always does it with a smile,” said Simmons. “You can tell that he’s going to be a success.”

The Muskogee senior wants others to know that ICTC offers a championship environment for everyone.

“This program and all the others at ICTC offer a true learning advantage where you can invest your time learning something for free that will give you an opportunity for success for the rest of your life. So I’d tell everyone to spend your time wisely!

Discover the secrets to success for tomorrow at Indian Capital Technology Center, where students learn how to do the work and are ready to use their talents to their advantage for a lifetime. For more details, check it out for yourself at ictech.edu.

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