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Student Career Resource

Everything You Need to Know About Becoming a Barber With Blaine R. Harris

In 2019, we are highlighting certain occupations as part of our Social Media Education Platform. We are doing this as an effort to bring awareness to grade 11, 12 and college students so they can think ahead and do research on various career options available.

To date, we have interviewed: a Pharmacist,  Respiratory Therapist, Optometrist, Speech Language Pathologist, Bike Shop Manager, Correctional Officer, Social Worker, 911 Operator, Police Officer, Nurse, Teacher, Educational Support Staff, Radiation Therapist, Lifeguard, Firefighter, Music Professional, Paramedic, Engineer, Medical Laboratory Professional, Actor, Non-Profit Organizations, Dental Hygienist, and a Marketing professional.

We discussed the reality of their day to day work and asked them for advice on succeeding in their respective fields. Check out these interviews by visiting our “Student Career Resource” section.

Today we are proud to interview Blaine R. Harris, a Master Barber www.lancaster-barber.com  


What made you want to work as Barber?

When I was a teenager I had a hard time finding someone who could cut my hair the way “I” wanted it, then I found an Italian barber who could do just that, I started to hang around his shop and watch him inter-act with his customers and seen the friendships that he formed within the shop, he knew his customers by name, he knew their families, and greeted them by name. It was then at that point that I knew I wanted to be a barber, a barber is a beacon to the community and knows and is part of the community. 

Briefly describe the educational background you need to be a Barber?

There are 2 ways to become a barber, the first way is to apprentice in a barber shop and when you have accumulated enough hours apply to challenge the barber examinations and if successful, you would be licensed, the other is to attend a licensed barber school and when finished school, challenge the exam if successful you will be licensed as a barber.

Both methods have pros and cons, 

Apprentice Pros and Cons


  • Able to work in a barbershop from day 1     
  • Able to receive compensation for work        
  • No Student Loans                                                       


  • Must do 3000 hours over a minimum of 2 years
  • Must be under direct supervision at all times (Cannot work alone)
  • Must do own study of textbook no teacher to help

Barber School Pros and Cons


  • Able to complete in 860 hours 22 weeks      
  • Study theory in class and have teacher          
  • No apprenticeship required                                 


  • Student Loan
  • Theory and practical are in class room, so clients are limited
  • Shorter period to learn information overload limited ability to learn current trends

Why do you love being a Barber?

The people and the community, I love being able to interact with people of all walks of like, rich, poor, young, old, and everything in between. When a customer leaves the shop and they are happy I feel fulfilled that I have done my job. I love that I know about 90% of my customers by name.

Leave us with a fun fact about your occupation?

Barbers were the original medical practitioners, they were the doctors and dentists as well as the surgeons, a fact that is still held in our symbol of the trade the “Barber Pole” that represents our old days, the RED was for Blood, The WHITE was for Bandages and the BLUE was for Veins.

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