Adult hairdressing student proof you can live the dream


A part time hairdressing course for adults changed the life and career of one former South Essex College student.

Vivienne Fetterplace, 47, from Orsett studied Level 2 Hairdressing at the college’s Grays town centre campus in the evenings while continuing her job in a primary school.

She now has a whole new career as a successful hairdresser with her own in-home salon business, Vivienne Fetterplace Hair, and a very long loyal client list.

Vivienne said: “I’ve wanted to be a hairdresser all my life. Prior to starting the course, I set up my own business alongside my full time job at a primary school, doing updos for weddings and proms. 

“Once qualified, I had built up a great relationship with so many clients that I had enough to leave my old job and work full time in my salon from home and follow my lifelong dream.

“I now have 120 clients with at least 10 new enquiries every week, I have had to close my books for a while because I cannot fit anyone else in during the working week. I’m living my dream daily.”

Vivienne would absolutely recommend the college’s hairdressing courses to any adults thinking of changing career. She added: “I waited 40 odd years to follow this dream career path, not a day goes by that I regret my decision.

“The course covers in-depth theory which helped tremendously when preparing for the practical lessons
“My group of classmates clicked from day one and helped each other out, offering lots of support – we all cried on our last day of lessons because we were so sad to say good bye to each other.”

Follow Vivienne Fetterplace hair on Instagram @v_f_hair

The college offers a variety of part time evening courses in hairdressing and beauty therapies at its Southend and Thurrock campuses. For more information, visit and