Partners in education

Today I phoned up a delightful human and fellow student in my cohort, Ms Megan Penner. We engaged in discussion about our professions, adult education, and how the two come together in the classroom as well as in real world, professional practice.  

Megan has been successful working as a professional hairdresser for 13 years. She is inspired by how other hairdressers mentored her and helped develop her career. This inspiration is her motivation to share her knowledge and in doing so give back to her community. 

Ms Penner takes note of both the trends in the hairdressing industry, as well as the phases they go through. Some of her customers hold on to a style for years while others adopt a new style as soon as it come out. It is critical that her students learn to “adapt to any request their customer may inquire about.” (Penner M., Hair Trends of 2019, Hair Therapy)  

Megan is actively engaged with how emotions play a role in learning. First in the salon, she finds herself educating customers on intimate details of hair and scalp care. Carefully reading a customer’s emotions helps her decide how to approach delicate topics and when and how to discuss needs and desires. Second, in the classroom, Megan recognizes the importance of teaching students about the importance of consulting with their customers. Part of her instructional focus will be on how to form emotional connections by positioning oneself empathetically and asking the right questions. 


Penner M (2019) Hair Trends of 2019. Hair Therapy. Retrieved from

VCC - School of Instructor Education (n.d.) Retrieved from