Bemis School of Art
818 Pelham Place, 475-2444
Affiliated with the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, Bemis School of Art offers year-round courses for all ages and skill levels. Choose from drawing, watercolor, acrylic and oil painting, printmaking, ceramics, sculpture, mosaic, jewelry-making and much more. Some programs are eligible for credit at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. In addition, according to communications director Charlie Snyder, Bemis has taken on a fairly new project, Military Creative Expressions, in which it teams up with an art therapy partner to help military members learn about and participate in creating art.
Cottonwood Center for the Arts
427 E. Colorado Ave., 520-1899
Cottonwood Center for the Arts has been in Colorado Springs since 1997 and offers a variety of classes in watercolor, pottery, clay, bead-making, painting and stained glass, to name a few. There are classes for beginners and experienced artists. The school is gearing up for its summer program, and this year is offering classes for children in June and July.
Sheppard Art Institute
4476 Seton Hall Road, 282-2706
According to founder Kang Lee Sheppard, Sheppard Art Institute is "giving our community professional art classes for low tuition." Sheppard is very proud of the fact that all the instructors are volunteers. Additionally, she says many of the professional artists in town have taken a class or two with the institute. SAI is now offering its classes at First Presbyterian Church in downtown Colorado Springs, and will provide week-long classes this summer.
International Salon and Spa Academy
5707 N. Academy Blvd., 597-1413
Independently owned and established in the Springs 41 years ago, the International Salon and Spa Academy offers full- and part-time programs in cosmetology, barbering, hairstyling, nail technology and esthetics. It's now also using "turn technology," which is a new way of interacting with students using TVs, computers and individual remote "clickers." According to admissions representative Heather Galbraith, it's a visual aid as well as a way to keep track of the answers that students provide in fun formats like Jeopardy.
Paul Mitchell The School
118 W. Colorado Ave., 636-1426
Paul Mitchell is a well-known brand in beauty, established 30 years ago, that now boasts more than 100,000 salons. Paul Mitchell The School offers full- and part-time programs in full cosmetology, design, cutting, coloring, makeup, fashion trends, manicure, pedicure, facials and hairdressing. The full-time program takes 13 months, and the part-time program takes two years. According to Dani Tonge, admissions leader, the students are currently in their fund-raising season (they call it "FUNraising"), in which they put together events such as cut-a-thons to raise money for charity.
Salon Professional Academy
4388 Austin Bluffs Pkwy., 266-9400
The academy offers courses in cosmetology, esthetics and nail technology. Some of its claims to fame are its small class sizes, state-of-the-art facilities and a Redken-supported cosmetology program.
332 Main St., 390-9898
Admissions contact Leah Lewis calls Toni&Guy an "education brand" because it's a company focused on learning. Toni&Guy offers two programs: cosmetology, which takes 12 months, and hairstyling, which takes eight. The Colorado Springs location is moving north this month and will be starting June classes at its new spot, 5125 N. Academy Blvd.
Collinson Massage School
2163 N. Academy Blvd., 310-9297
Director Karen Collinson is proud to say that the school has been around for more than 30 years and has instructors who have been with the school for 26 years. Classes begin in October and April, with 12 students each who complete 600 hours of coursework in Swedish massage, introduction to sports massage, hydrotherapy, licensing/registration, business, infant and prenatal massage, and national exam preparation. They also offer continuing-ed classes for massage therapists to earn certificates in additional specialties.
Colorado Institute of Massage Therapy
1490 W. Fillmore St., 634-7347
At Colorado Institute of Massage Therapy, choose the Advanced Neuromuscular Massage Therapy certification program with 850 diploma hours or the Essential Massage Therapy certification program with 550 diploma hours. Either way, you'll leave CIMT with courses in anatomy and physiology, massage theory and technique, and clinic hours doing massages for clients in the community.
1025 Garden of the Gods Road, Suite C, 265-8611; 623 N. Nevada Ave., 477-9642
With two CorePower locations in the Springs, you definitely have options when it comes to what kind of yoga you want to learn to teach. Power Yoga is taught at both locations, with classes beginning in June, plus Hot Yoga/Hot Power Fusion at the Garden of the Gods studio and Yoga Sculpt at the Nevada studio. At both Power Yoga programs, you learn how to communicate with students and how to correct yoga postures. Your understanding of how the body works will find enhancement in anatomy study and cadaver labs.
Pranava Yoga Center
718 N. Weber St., 444-8463
Pranava Yoga Center has only been in the Springs since January 2009, but is already expanding. By the beginning of July, the center is planning to move down a few feet to 802 N. Weber St., where it will still have three practice rooms, but more space. PYC's next 200-hour training begins at the end of May — they were still accepting applications at press time — and in March 2013 they'll debut a 500-hour training program that will be the only one of its kind in the Springs.
National Personal Training Institute of Colorado
4305 Beverly St., 877/215-2643
With two locations in Colorado since 2001, NPTI is prepared to offer students a six-month program with more than 1,000 hours of hands-on experience, including classroom instruction, muscle practicals, case studies, CPR/AED certification and more. Students will graduate with a certificate from this U.S. Department of Education-accredited institution that they could use to obtain jobs at fitness centers, personal training studios, assisted living centers, cruise ships or anywhere you can think of that might require personal trainers.
6551 N. Academy Blvd., 578-5777
This flexible 40-hour course is great for those who want to learn how to bartend as a career or just as an extra source of income. You can get hands-on training in four-hour increments for two weeks, or eight-hour increments for one week, with classes on the weekends, in the afternoon or in the evening. There are five to six students per week at the Bartending Academy. On top of the perks of learning to mix your favorite drinks, the Bartending Academy boasts 80 percent job placement.
Paragon Culinary School
505 Popes Bluff Trail, 578-5740
This three-year culinary program was founded by chef Victor Matthews, owner of the Black Bear Restaurant in Green Mountain Falls. Paragon runs on a trimester schedule with classes beginning in August, November and March. It offers classes in world cuisine, baking and pastry and more, and boasts small class sizes and hands-on hours. The school has been around for eight years; this June, its fifth class graduates.
Air Academy Associates
1650 Telstar Drive #110, 531-0777
Air Academy Associates has been in Colorado Springs for more than 20 years and offers multiple training sessions for "those in this world who love training for training's sake." Methodologies taught in training sessions include Lean, Six Sigma, Lean Six Sigma, Innovation, Design for Six Sigma, Reliability and Systems Engineering.
Center for Creative Leadership
850 Leader Way, 633-3891
The Center for Creative Leadership was founded in 1970 in North Carolina and has since expanded across the country and even internationally, in countries including Belgium and Singapore. The Colorado Springs facility sits on 66 acres of land at the foot of Pikes Peak and offers trainings and programs in leadership and specialized skills for the workplace.
7222 Commerce Center Drive #235, 596-4545
LeaderQuest offers training for business leaders including courses in Adobe, Citrix and Cisco, as well as career certifications and more. They have provided learning solutions for major companies such as ADT, University of Colorado at Denver, Western Union and the Department of Veterans Affairs, to name a few.
1947 Aviation Way, 573-2236
FAA-certified instructors at this family-owned flying school offer training — FAR parts 61 (a less structured program) and 141 (standardized FAA training) — for those seeking pilot certification. Part 141 training can qualify for VA reimbursement. According to A-Cent's website, 98 percent of their students pass their FAA written test on the first attempt and 95 percent pass their flight checks on the first try. A-Cent is also a CATS FAA testing center.
New Life School of Worship
11025 Voyager Pkwy., 268-8201
New Life Church is one of the most well-known churches in Colorado Springs, but relatively few people know how it trains future worship leaders. This nine-month program offers both full-time and part-time classes in music theory, ministry leadership, worship songwriting and more, as well as private lessons. After the nine months are over, students are evaluated and have the opportunity to post their résumé on the New Life School of Worship website. They also receive an endorsement from the school.
Springs Truck Driving School and CDL Testing
890 Dublin Blvd., Suite B, 338-1550
Springs Truck Driving School says its hands-on approach to teaching "meets or exceeds" Professional Truck Driving Institute standards. Here you'll get one-on-one instruction toward earning a Class A commercial driver's license. The school also offers job placement assistance to graduates.
5026 N. Academy Blvd., 528-5596
Voelker Research is an Apple specialist and authorized service provider. Its trainings are designed around Apple products, and aim to help you "get to know your Mac a little better." Voelker presents daytime, evening and weekend courses in OS X Basics, Adobe Photoshop, and Microsoft Office, to name a few.
LearningRx Training Center
1130 Lake Plaza Drive, #100; 7075 Campus Drive, 550-8263
Ever heard of brain training? According to LearningRx's website, it's a research-backed way to enhance your ability to "learn faster, easier and better." This program is used by students with ADHD and learning problems, as well as by college students, seniors, career-building adults and preschool students to gain a competitive edge and just better brain capacity.
Pikes Peak Library District
Various locations, 531-6333
The Pikes Peak Library District offers free classes ranging from computer basics and skills for 55-plus to yoga and tai chi classes. There's even a class on how to use your Kindle to search the library's CyberShelf. Check the website for a calendar of classes, and to see what each branch offers. Space is limited so don't forget to register.
PILLAR Institute for Lifelong Learning
202 E. Cheyenne Mountain Blvd., Suite I, 633-4991
PILLAR is a nonprofit organization that's all about "learning for the fun of it." It offers seminars, adventures and inexpensive classes on all sorts of topics, such as arts, literature, history, legal and financial affairs and philosophy.
School District 11 Continuing Education
Multiple locations, 520-2384
Are you one of those people who stand on the sidelines at weddings, wishing you could dance? Then District 11 Continuing Ed has a class for you. At the new Wedding Dance Sampler class, you'll learn to waltz, foxtrot, rumba and swing. District 11 also offers inexpensive classes for those interested in learning about Adobe Photoshop, playing guitar, beginning sign language, country line dancing and knitting, just to name a few.
University of Colorado at Colorado Springs Academy of Lifelong Learning
1861 Austin Bluffs Pkwy., #100, 255-3498
Run by the Extended Studies program across the street from the main campus, UCCS' Academy of Lifelong Learning (ALL) caters to knowledge-hungry students who are 55 and older. Programs include Listening In, where you can choose from more than 100 regular-session classes each semester (on a space-available basis). It's non-credit, so don't worry about homework! There's also ed2go (see below), which provides a base of more than 250 online classes.
Distance Learning Resources
With CCCOnline, you can register for one of 13 community colleges in Colorado (plus Dawson Community College in Glendive, Mont.).
ed2go offers online classes from its network of more than 1,800 top colleges and universities.
As a volunteer Coach and Mentor in my third year at The First Tee of…