Four Emerging NextGen Hairstylists Awarded BCL│Leo Passage Scholarships

December 13, 2016 | 1:48 PM
Alaska Gaxiola, Beau Monde Academy of Cosmetology, Portland, Oregon
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Matthew Stradling, Bellus Academy, Poway, California
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Latasha Coy, Bellus Academy, Manhattan, Kansas
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Holly Moretti, Penrose Academy, Scottsdale, Arizona.
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Four talented beauty and wellness students from across the U.S. have been awarded a Leo Passage Scholarship and will participate in the NextGen Project during the Beauty Changes Lives Experience at America’s Beauty Show, on March 26, 2017. The Leo Passage Scholarship provides a platform for NextGen talent to showcase their creativity and artistic passion before some of the world’s leading beauty brands and industry icons while they are still in beauty school.

The 2016 Leo Passage Scholarship winners will travel to Chicago March 22-27 for an immersive six-day, five-night experience led by Pivot Point International. Throughout the week, the winning teams will partner with Pivot Point mentors to create a fashion hairstyle collection inspired by emerging global trends.

These mentors will challenge each winner to contribute to developing a collection using mood and storyboard creation techniques, assist in model selection and finally complete their looks with on-set fashion styling and finishing. Additionally, winners will participate in a photo shoot and may use the images in their future portfolios. The NextGen Project experience will culminate in a runway fashion presentation celebrating the theme of the 2017 Beauty Changes Lives Experience: The Art of Prediction. Each winner’s experience is valued at $7,500.

The Leo Passage Scholarship winners participating in the NextGen Project, and their respective schools, are:

  • Matthew Stradling, Bellus Academy, Poway, California
  • Alaska Gaxiola, Beau Monde Academy of Cosmetology, Portland, Oregon
  • Holly Moretti, Penrose Academy, Scottsdale, Arizona.
  • Latasha Coy, Bellus Academy, Manhattan, Kansas

Applicants in the annual scholarship competition submitted videos responding to the question, “What do you want to SHOUT through beauty?” Applicants’ videos were reviewed by an accomplished team of nationally recognized judges. Remarking on the winners, Robert Passage, CEO of Pivot Point International, stated, “The individuals selected to receive this honor represent the spirit of the beauty industry and Pivot Point. Their applications reflect a keen passion for education, creative curiosity and pride in our amazing industry.” 

 Passage added that the opportunity to engage with many of the beauty industry’s most respected brands and personalities will provide emerging talent with exposure and networking possibilities. “The 2016 Leo Passage Scholarship winners possess an interesting mix of NextGen attitude towards beauty and fashion, coupled with personal enthusiasm. These individuals have great careers ahead of them and we are thrilled to award scholarships to these talented and promising future professionals,” concluded Passage.

Beauty Changes Lives Foundation President Lynelle Lynch said the theme “The Art of Prediction” complements the symbiotic relationship that exists between youth and global beauty and fashion trends. “Young people have always been at the forefront of emerging fashion and beauty trends. We are excited to see how the Leo Passage Scholarship winners will integrate inspiration derived from data on emerging trends with creative insights that arise in the moment through the process of collaboration,” Lynch said.

BCL/Leo Passage Scholarship winners’ application videos may be viewed at The Beauty Changes Lives Experience on March 26, 2017 in Chicago is open to the public as well as industry professionals. Online ticket sales will begin January 4, 2017. Additional information on the BCL Experience is available at

About the Beauty Changes Lives Foundation: With a mission to elevate, educate and empower, Beauty Changes Lives is uniting the industry and building awareness of the extraordinary career opportunities in the beauty, wellness and massage therapy industries. Learn more at or find us on Facebook

About Cosmetologists Chicago: Cosmetologists Chicago is an association of more than 15,000 salon and spa owners, professionals, and students that provides education, legislative support, advanced certification and more. Cosmetologists Chicago owns and produces the annual America’s Beauty Show.

 About Pivot Point International: Pivot Point International delivers exceptional beauty education designed to help students, educators and owners excel. With deep industry knowledge, Pivot Point offers fully integrated content, products and tools available in six continents, and is translated into multiple languages. Founded by Leo Passage in 1962, Pivot Point remains committed to his legacy of providing sustainable careers. Visit us at or find us on Facebook and Instagram.

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