Sixteen year-old St Columba College student, Antonio Miceli, handles a cut throat razor with skill.
Antonio has an energetic passion for the trade and recently started his barbering apprenticeship with Barber Boys, Munno Para.
In the lead-up to commencing his Certificate III in Barbering, Antonio has dedicated many volunteer hours in the shop, developing his skills and learning from one of the best in the field, his shop manager Anwar Al Hassanieh, a barber with over 14 years industry experience.
By his own efforts, for a whole year Antonio worked every Saturday at the store and took part in workshops on Tuesday nights at the Barbery Academy training centre until his was old enough to apply for an apprenticeship.
“I initially contacted the boss of Barber Boys and the Barbery Academy. I had an interview at the training centre, but because I was only 15, I was too young at the time for an apprenticeship,” Antonio said.
His year of dedication and commitment to working in the store and learning the craft has ultimately secured him his apprenticeship now that he has turned 16 years of age.
Officially commencing in April, Antonio’s school-based apprenticeship sees him juggling barbering with his Year 11 school studies.
“An apprenticeship takes three and a half years but at this time mine will take me seven years,” Antonio said.
“I currently work 25 hours a weeks, plus school, but when I finish Year 12 I can do more hours and the length of my apprenticeship will go down.”
Antonio aims to finish Year 12 with the support of his parents and the encouragement from St Columba College and the Futures Counsellor, Mr Shane Dowling.
“Mr Dowling really encouraged me to pursue this career. He helped me get in contact with Barber Boys to start an apprenticeship,” Antonio said.
“To get an apprenticeship you have to complete Year 10 and be 16. It’s expected you quit school and do it full-time,” he said. “My parents also want me to finish school.”
As the Futures Counsellor at St Columba College, Mr Dowling works in partnership with organisations, such as Business SA, to ensure there are agreements and an understanding of the school-based apprenticeship between the student, the family, the employer and the College.
“The College is able to support the student balance both work and school commitments,” Mr Dowling said.
“This promotes excellent outcomes for the student as they can successfully complete their SACE as well as reduce the number of years to complete the apprenticeship, post school.”
As a Futures Counsellor, Mr Dowling provides professional advice to students on careers and future pathways.
“In Year 10, we teach the Personal Learning Plan (PLP) as part of the SACE. This is a valuable opportunity for students to work on their career development and begin to look at Vocational Pathways,” Mr Dowling said.
Antonio chose Barbering as part of his PLP last year, helping him to plan for his future and assisting him in choosing subjects to study for Years 11 and 12.
His subsequent planning and his first hair cutting experience on his best friend at the age of 14, has turned his dream into a passion, enthusiasm and dedication to the real culture of barbering.
Advancing his techniques while working in the store, Antonio has created his own barber room at home while promoting his services through social media.
“I made a table last year at school in Design and I’ve also got a mirror along with all my tools such as clippers, scissors, cut throat and trimmers,” he said.
“Ultimately, I would like my own store and have someone run that with me and something else like maybe a pub or maybe a tattoo parlour,” Antonio said.
Thinking even bigger, Antonio said he would eventually like to open up his own business all over the world and cut hair for the rich and famous.