Wingate Faces

Wingate alum uses hair cutting skills to give back to the community

Nicole McCracken ’04 always knew she would own her own business, but didn’t know what type of business. She came to Wingate after receiving an associate degree from a beauty school in Brunswick County. Throughout her years at Wingate, she worked part time cutting hair. So after graduating with a business administration and management degree, she decided to go into business with a partner and open a hair salon.

Rather than return to the Wilmington, N.C. area, she stayed in Union County. “I made up my business plan,” she said. “It just made sense to stay here.” She had already built up a client base since she had continued cutting hair throughout college.

A few years later, she went out on her own with Kym Neco’s Salon. “Wingate helped prepare me for all the back end responsibilities of running my own business,” Nicole said. Dr. Jeff von Freymann’s marketing class helped her with business plans, advertising ideas and social networking. “They helped me with revamping my website and my whole advertising avenue,” she said.

She likes to give back to the community by periodically offering free haircuts on various college campuses and has plans to offer the same in area nursing homes. Recently, she cut hair for free in the Dickson Palmer Center on Wingate’s campus. Jeannie Thomas, who works at Wingate, was a recipient of one of the haircuts. “I really like the way she cut it,” Jeannie said. “She wants to give back and that very much impresses me.” Nicole also helps cancer patients with hair pieces and styling.

The salon has a full range of services including haircut, chemical services, braids and hair extensions. Visit the salon website at Kym Neco’s Salon is located at 1969 Old Charlotte Highway in Monroe.