After a successful run of Mentor Me in 2019, Matrix and Matrix Global Business Ambassador Tabatha Coffey returned in 2021 to reward five stylists with a year-long journey of education, growth, and mentorship alongside Coffey.
Mentor Me, which debuted as the brainchild of Coffey and the Matrix Education team, was created for recent beauty school graduates to develop and expand their skills. Mentees receive a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to receive one-on-one coaching and mentoring from Coffey in cutting, color, styling, business, and personal growth.
After a challenging year for the beauty industry with temporary salon closures in 2021, the industry needed uplifting. Matrix opened the Mentor Me program to all licensed hair professionals who were looking to grow and better their skills. Though the program looked different this year, as the mentees were unable to experience in-person training, they were able to proceed with extensive virtual training.
In March 2021, Matrix received hundreds of virtual applications and five mentees were selected: Annelise "Babs" Busch, Mark Amponin, Gabriel Urbina, Chavaun DeVore, and Georgia Tournai. The mentees began the program in May when they met Coffey for the first time and took their first skills assessment with training from Matrix artists including Nick Stenson, Eric Vaughn and Michelle O'Connor, with more to come in 2022.
“Everyone needed support, not just recent grads, so we needed to give stylists this opportunity, says Mentor Me Director Kiera Doyle. “With the first integration of the program, we knew the goal was for the mentees to be present at Matrix Destination 2020 in front of 2,000 hairdressers. This year, we were unsure if we would be able to meet in person and had to adapt virtually. With the uncertainty of the beauty industry in the wake of the pandemic, Matrix saw the importance of this program now more than ever.”
“Mentor Me shows the possibilities of what is available to you,” Coffey says. “We did not let obstacles get in the way. Instead, we turned them into opportunities. Every mentee took virtual learning in stride with invaluable, hands-on training from the Matrix education team, Artistic Directors and Creative Directors.”
Currently halfway through the program, the mentees have the opportunity to meet each other in person for the first time. Matrix will bring the group together for three days of hands-on education in New York City in December. After overcoming the obstacles of virtual education, bonding over text threads, and only seeing each other virtually, it's going to be a big moment for all.
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