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Kenia Benjamin

Kenia Benjamin

Teacher of Cosmetology

Kenia Benjamin can’t believe she is teaching at the Academy Cosmetology Program at Brentwood High School. She originally attended the Cosmetology class at Milliken Tech during her junior and senior years at Brentwood. Fate brought her full circle as she is now an Academy Cosmetology teacher for Brentwood’s first in-district CTE Program, which launched at the beginning of the 2022-23 school year.

As Benjamin explains it, her time in the program opened up her eyes to multiple career pathways. Immediately after high school, she earned both her nail technician and cosmetology licenses, worked in various salons on Long Island, and started managing salons after gaining more experience.

Benjamin came back to ESBOCES as a bilingual interpreter for their Adult Education Program, and then as a teacher assistant in the Cosmetology Program. All the while, she was still working in the industry and simultaneously going to school to earn her Bachelor’s degree before she changed the direction of her education to become a certified teacher of CTE. “Teaching a bilingual class made me realize that I love to teach,” she said.

When the need arose to select a teacher for the new in-district program, Benjamin embraced the opportunity. Today, she is excited to be at the front of her own Cosmetology classroom and is busy making plans to participate in regional student leadership events and industry extravaganzas to provide her students with every experience possible. Said Benjamin, “I want to be someone who opens doors for my students and lets them know that they can accomplish anything.”

Click here to read about our Cosmetology Program