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Graduate Profile : Denise Romero

Milan Graduate Shares Her Journey To A Rewarding Career

Milan Graduate Shares Her Journey To A Rewarding Career: Denise Romero

Milan Graduate Shares Her Journey To A Rewarding Career: Denise Romero

To listen to Denise Romero talk, you would never guess the level of despair and hardship she has faced. However, adverse circumstances are not always a limiter of success. Denise has been able to rise above her troubles, and today, she exudes happiness, confidence, and a spirit of determination.

At one point, after her husband lost his job of over 30 years and experienced tragedy in the death of his 14-year-old daughter, Denise and her husband found themselves in Central California without a home and not knowing where they were going to turn. “The first year here in Fresno was horrible. We sold everything just to get by,” Denise remembers.

There happened to be a Milan Institute campus just down the street from where they were staying. Denise had seen the Milan Institute commercials on TV and recalls: “Something kept telling me ‘do it, just do it.’ I had to believe that something good would come out of it.”

Despite not even having enough money for gas to drive, Denise was determined to find a way, even if she had to walk to class. With that resolve, she went to the campus to enroll. “After that, everything just got better,” Denise says. Being a military veteran’s spouse, she found out that she was eligible for military spouse’s financial assistance to help offset her tuition. Things were finally looking up.
“The very first day of class when I walked in and saw my name up on the board saying ‘Welcome Denise,’ I knew I’d made the right decision by choosing Milan.” Denise was so excited about becoming a massage therapist that she never failed to complete any homework assignment and never missed a single day of class. Even a fear of taking tests didn’t deter her. Denise credits her fellow students for their teamwork, help and support in getting through the tough moments.

Fast forward and Denise is celebrating two and a half years of being employed as a Certified Massage Therapist with The Spa & Hungry Hair Salon, a premier full-service spa and salon in Fresno, California’s Fig Garden shopping center. “I was hired as soon as I met the owner, only one month after graduating. I was self-assured and ready to begin my career. My experience and training at Milan gave me the confidence I needed to pursue my goals. After graduating from Milan Institute, I have more freedom and confidence with a career I can be proud of,” explains Denise.

Milan Institute helped Denise change her life from being unemployed and financially insecure. “I highly recommend Milan Institute to everyone,” she says. “I also regularly encourage people to make use of the value-priced student salon and spa services at Milan Institute for a fraction of the regular cost.”

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Adult Learner Scholarship

Adult Learner Scholarship | Milan Institute
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Barbering Program Now Enrolling

The Barbering career training program is offered at these campuses:

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30th Anniversary Press Release


Milan Institute Celebrates 30 Years and Over 35,000 Graduates

Visalia, CA – October 20, 2015 – The Milan Institute and Milan Institute of Cosmetology school group will celebrate its 30-year anniversary in October 2015. All Milan campuses located throughout the western and southwestern United States will celebrate the event with fun activities and refreshments for students, faculty and staff. The anniversary marks 30 years of providing quality career training in the fields of beauty, massage, healthcare, business, information technology and energy. To date, over 35,000 students have graduated from the Milan school group.


Milan Institute opened its first campus, Golden State Business College, in October 1985. The school was located in Visalia, California, in the heart of the Central Valley and only offered career training in court reporting. Golden State Business College was opened by James M. Yasuda, O.D., a well-known optometrist within the community. About his decision to open a career training school, Dr. Yasuda recalls “I had an empty building and needed to do something with it. At the time, I was reading a book by Napoleon Hill. In it, the author said that the key to building a big business is to find a need and fill it. And that’s exactly what I did.”


Shortly after Dr. Yasuda’s son, Gary Yasuda, graduated with a B.S. in Economics and Biology from UCLA, Dr. Yasuda asked him to return home to Visalia to help operate the school. “When Gary first started working, he didn’t know a lot about career schools,” said Dr. Yasuda, thinking back to the original school. “He had to learn a lot on his own, but he never gave up – he didn’t quit. I’ve got to hand it to him.” Since then, Gary Yasuda has grown to become a leader in the career school industry and was one of the first recipients of the prestigious STAR Award from the California Association of Private Postsecondary Schools.


As president of Milan Institute, Gary Yasuda expanded the school group in the number of campuses, markets and career training programs offered. Today, there are 19 Milan campuses located throughout California, Nevada, Idaho and Texas. In January 2009, Dr. Yasuda officially retired from the board of directors and passed all ownership over to his son Gary Yasuda. The company has remained family-owned for the past 30 years.


“It has been a wonderful experience to lead the Milan Institute team for so many years,” states Gary Yasuda. “To see our first class of 7 business students and 4 employees in October 1985 be the precursor to 35,000 graduates and 570 Milan employees is an amazing achievement for us. Changing graduates’ lives for the better is something all Milan employees are proud of. Milan has been an important contributor in the communities we’re located in, and we have built an excellent reputation for quality career training and job placement results. We are passionate about what we do and are excited about what the future holds for our schools.”


Milan’s mission is to meet the needs of students and employers by offering quality, short-term educational programs in career fields with solid growth potential. The Milan school group offers career training in the beauty, massage, healthcare, business, information technology and energy fields. Programs vary by location. Many campuses also have a student salon or student massage spa, where value-priced services are provided to the public by students under instructor supervision. For more information about Milan Institute, please call 1-888-207-9460 or visit

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Back to School Specials

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Military Discount Specials

Military Discount Salon & Spa Specials | Milan Institute Of Cosmetology
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Summer Blast Event

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Student Salon Weekday Special

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Toys For Tots Toy Drive

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Cancer Survivor Beauty and Support Day

Cancer Survivor Beauty & Support Day Specials | Milan Institute
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