Unlike many other design subjects, jewellery design is a little more niche, meaning that it can prove more difficult to find a variety of useful information on different educational institutions. This skilled and specialised career choice can be highly competitive, especially when many aspects of jewellery design today are being replaced by machinery. Keeping this in mind, it’s highly important to ensure you attend a renowned and well-respected school if you are hoping to be considered for the top positions available when you graduate.
Although some technological advances are present today that make jewellery production more efficient, there is still a wide range of positions that are too intricate to be carried out by a machine and, currently, still require human handiwork. Many of the best jewellers in the business are older in age, and often in their last few years of work. Typically, older jewellers have started right from the bottom and worked their way to the top, gaining years of professional experience along the way. This makes them highly knowledgeable and sought after, leaving them hard to replace when retirement comes around. Businesses accustomed to having an experienced jeweller on their team will only be interested in hiring the best, thus making the competition for new positions fierce. In this article, we will be giving you the low down on some of the top schools that provide a degree in Jewellery Design, exploring the benefits that each of them holds; this will hopefully aid you in making an informed decision when it comes to applying for schools.
One of the oldest universities in America, Rochester Institute of Technology is just one of the schools available today offering a well-respected degree in Jewellery Design. Founded in 1829, The College of Imaging Arts and Sciences boasts many sought-after design qualifications, including a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Metals and Jewellery Design, as well as a Master of Fine Arts qualification in Ceramics and Furniture Design within its American Crafts Department. The internationally recognised school benefits from a student focussed teaching approach, where individuals can focus on both the concepts of high-end Jewellery Design and the practical aspects of metal smithing, too.
With an interesting array of modules on offer, including metal sculpture and furniture design, available alongside the main course content, students are blessed with the opportunity to learn practical skills ready for the working world, such as stone setting, soldering, fabrication, and casting. Priding itself on close connections with the industry being maintained, the school regularly invites in guest lecturers to share their knowledge and love for their job role with the aspiring Jewellery Designers. With the end goal of their senior exhibition in mind, throughout the course the students put together a body of industry standard work; this means that each individual has a beautiful portfolio to present to potential employers after graduation.
Founded in Florence in 1973, the LdM School of Design is one of Italy’s most respected centres of higher education. Ever growing in popularity, the design school now has campus’ in top locations throughout Italy, including Venice, Rome, and Tuscany. With the course structure consisting of classes that teach students how to fully prepare materials, before polishing and setting precious gemstone jewellery, individuals that choose to attend this world-renowned school can be sure to come away with a solid body of knowledge and skills in their field. With the option to use other materials in addition to metal, students are giving the chance to create their own style of work through the development of jewellery staples, including rings, bracelets, and earrings. An incredible incentive to gain your degree at the LdM School of Design is the fact that students are taught the traditional Italian craft of relief works. Currently, LdM is one of the only educational centres in the world to teach this exclusive technique.
Based in the prime location of Kings Cross, London, Central Saint Martins offers students the opportunity to gain a Bachelor of Arts degree in Jewellery Design. With the course structure comprising of topics such as sculpture, furniture design and Hollowware alongside the main subject, students are provided with the chance to gain numerous additional skills in their area of expertise. Each year, new projects are carried out alongside industry names such as Topshop, Swarovski, and Nissan, enabling individuals to connect with real world brands on the journey to gaining their qualification.
Much like the rest of the schools mentioned, Birmingham City University offers a well-respected Jewellery Design degree. One thing in particular that makes this centre of education stand out from the crowd though, is its prime location. Based in the very centre of Birmingham’s famous Jewellery Quarter, the students accepted onto this course are given the opportunity to work on numerous live briefs with famous brands. With hundreds of Jewellery shops design studios only a stone’s throw from the front door, graduates from the program have been known to gain international recognition, working for brands such as Galerie Marzee, Saatchi Gallery, and Sieraad.
Opened to the public in 2004, the study of Jewellery design at China Academy of Art is one of the more recent additions to the list. Starting with a four-year Bachelor degree, the educational institute provides students with the option to continue their study through to a Masters Qualification, if they so wish. The challenging program develops students’ skills in sculpture, glass, and ceramics, as well as more traditional techniques, working with metal.
No matter which educational institutes have the best reviews, it’s essential that you take the time to choose a course that’s right for you. As long as you work hard and always strive to do your best, a long and rewarding career will be on the horizon.