THE BEST THING I EVER DID

I quit my high-stress executive job and went to beauty school!

Gina Marinelli, of Mahoning Matters, publishes this incredible article that highlights the Beauty & Wellness sector, an industry that welcomes everybody who is passionate about cosmetology. This includes indivudals who may need a second or third job, single mothers and fathers, and perhaps indivudals who are transitioning career-paths entirely.

It was 1998 and Jennifer Bodnar of Youngstown had it all: A high-profile, fast-paced job as an assistant ad director and graphic designer for a local company with a national reputation for excellence. She was on the fast track. Jennifer was ambitious and loved her burgeoning career. But she was also balancing that career with her role as a wife and new mother, and helping her mom care for her elderly grandmother. But things started to change rapidly after the premature birth of her second child, who had special needs.

She was on the fast track. Jennifer was ambitious and loved her burgeoning career. But she was also balancing that career with her role as a wife and new mother, and helping her mom care for her elderly grandmother. But things started to change rapidly after the premature birth of her second child, who had special needs.

“I had some decisions to make. Who was I going to trust to take care of two babies? My son was 14 weeks premature and needed a lot of care, and my daughter was only 9 months old,” she said. “My husband was working shifts. I knew I couldn’t go back to work like before.” But she had to work. So, Jennifer took that old adage, “Find a way to make a living by doing what you love,” and made it work for her.

But she had to work. So, Jennifer took that old adage, “Find a way to make a living by doing what you love,” and made it work for her.

Since childhood, Jennifer was artistic. She loved makeup, glitter and nail polish. A lot. For her, nails were her canvas to create art. She decided to change course and go back to school. Beauty school. The decision came as a surprise to many, including her dad.

“I told my dad I was going to nail school. He said,; What? You have a college degree!’ I said, ‘It’s just for now until things calm down. I’ll go back to work when the kids get a little older.’ But things just blossomed and I never did go back.”

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