In February, we announced a new partnership with the Hays Academy of Hair Design that will offer hairdressing academy students the opportunity to take four business courses while preparing for a Business Essentials certificate from Fort Hays State University.
This partnership is similar to the Gateway program through FHSU and North Central Kansas Technical College. Through this program, NCK Tech students can enjoy many of the benefits available to Fort Hays State students, including access to campus services, participation in student activities and organizations, and on-campus student housing. .
Our first eight-week certificate course, Understanding Personal Finance, was a huge success. The second, Management Practices, will end at the end of this semester. The third and fourth classes – Basics of Accounting and Taxes, and Social Media Marketing – will be taught in the Fall 2022 semester.
Hays native Reece Leiker, who will be graduating from Hays High School in May, plans to enroll in all of those classes next year.
I have known Reece for several years as a client of her makeup and skincare company. I have always been fascinated by his business acumen. I am thrilled that she is one of the students benefiting from the FHSU-Hays Academy partnership.
Reece said she knew from the first time she heard about the partnership that it was something she wanted to check out.
“I love school for the social aspect and I love surrounding myself with like-minded peers,” she said. “I knew living on campus was for me because I want to meet new people and stay in touch with my friends who will be attending FHSU this fall. I think living alone will teach me a lot about myself, and I’m looking forward to it.
Reece said his goal is to enjoy the college experience while being able to attend the school of his choice – the hairdressing academy.
“My goal is to have the college experience but receive the training of my choice through the hairdressing academy,” she said. “Business courses follow the same logic for me, and I think learning more is very beneficial.”
One of the things I really admire about Reece is his entrepreneurial spirit. She said she didn’t imagine herself as an entrepreneur when she was younger. However, when she was 11 and her younger brother, Channing, was 7, their mother asked them, “What could you do to change the world?”
Soon after, the Leiker siblings created Pure Roots, a homemade laundry detergent.
They identified and acquired a corporate sponsor for the materials so that 100% of the money from detergent sales would go directly towards their philanthropic goal of building five homes for the extremely poor in Nicaragua.
They estimated the total cost of these five houses at $26,000 and they set a deadline of one year to raise this amount. However, Reece and Channing achieved their goal in just seven months. They then set a new fundraising goal of 20 homes and also reached that goal by raising $104,000.
Inspired by her early successes and guided by her family’s motto, “Leave it better than you found it”, Reece embarked on a new adventure: to make the world more beautiful, inside and out. outside, inspiring confidence and self-esteem.
At the age of 14, Reece became an affiliate of a cosmetics brand. Later, she and her family created Fancy That Boutique for her business. The Hays storefront offers additional products such as magazines and jewelry.
It was then that Reece realized that the beauty industry was something she wanted to pursue as a career.
“I chose Hays Academy of Hair Design because after being affiliated with a cosmetics brand I realized it was something I really enjoyed,” she said. “I love helping women become the best version of themselves and reflect their inner beauty outward.”
“While attending Hays Academy and FHSU, I plan to launch my brand and focus on growing my business. After graduation, I plan to expand my brand and take over Fancy That Boutique.
“I love Hays and want to do my part in growing the business sector,” she said, “so I’m sure there will be more entrepreneurial opportunities that I will pursue.”
Reece’s role model is his mother, Taryn.
“I really look up to my mom when it comes to business because she leads with humility and compassion,” Reece said. “She makes others feel loved and heard. She pushes through her struggles and comes out stronger each time. She takes time to grow and takes her priorities seriously.
I have seen Reece develop his understanding of business practices such as inventory, supply chain, marketing, website development, financial management and business planning. In all of my encounters with Reece, I have found her to be extremely knowledgeable about her products and among the best in customer service and relationships. Every order she prepares for her customers includes a handwritten note to encourage a smile and positive thinking. She constantly thinks about her goal of inspiring positive change in our world.
Even at a young age, Reece has already made a significant impact in the lives and hearts of many people while simultaneously developing his business acumen, entrepreneurial skills and heart. I can’t wait to see how her journey continues to ignite people, communities and our world with love. And I’m thrilled with how our partnership with Hays Academy of Hair Design will continue to bring students like Reece to our campus.