The gem and jewellery industry of India contributes seven per cent to its overall GDP and 15.7 per cent of its merchandise exports as per India Brand Equity Foundation.
Employing over two million workers, the industry is counted as India’s one of the fastest growing sectors in recent years. The government focuses on Brand India campaign to strengthen such dynamic businesses and bringing the innovation and technology is an important step.
The campaign spreads the awareness and popularity of vocational courses in India, which earlier were least preferred by the students. One such course is the bachelor’s degree in Jewellery Designing attracting students from all over the country.
Until now, the profession of jewellery making had been undervalued due to less popularity and fewer job opportunities. But BA in jewellery designing is a good career opportunity, which millennials must grab as it is going to stay on the boom for next generation.
The further growth of gem and jewellery industry is in a great need of skilled professionals who have achieved mastery over blending ancient cultures and traditions with contemporary styles to produce the finest modern jewellery to interest both national and international consumers. This skill needs an intensive labor on empowering craftsmanship and focused training on technical expertise which is included in the course.
Like other undergraduate courses, this involves three years of theoretical learning and practical training in different segments of jewellery artistry. The curriculum is structured with the intensive technical study of gemology, iconography, metallurgy, stone setting, design planning and wax modeling among others.
The computer-aided knowledge is also imparted through coral draw, cad- rhino, Photoshop, 3D studio, digital modeling and designing. Jewellery marketing and management are at the core of any jewellery designing course.
Institutions such as National Institute of Fashion Technology, Pearl Academy, Indian Institute of Gems and Jewellery offer BA in jewellery designing and management courses. The eligibility criterion is +2 or equivalent qualification in any stream.
The students must give aptitude tests and face interview rounds as per the varying admission procedures and criteria of different institutions. Some colleges in India accept admissions through NIFT exam or National Institute of Design. The fee of the course usually spans for Rs 2 to 2.5 lakh per year. However, it differs from college to college.
The graduates can take up the jobs such as jewellery designer, accessories designer, leather goods designer, designer of metal components for accessories, product marketing coordinator, trend colours and materials researcher, and 3D jewellery designer among others. The institutes organise their campus placement drive in which the leading jewellery companies hunt for the best talent. Therefore, it reduces the burden of students to watch out for the jobs in the industry.
The industry is full of skillful craftsmen who can do wonders if trained well. That’s what the undergraduate and Master’s courses are focused to do in next few years. The specialised undergraduate course in jewellery designing opens up a pool of employment opportunities in the overseas market.
The jewellery companies abroad are always in search of well-trained designers who can give the exquisite design to the customers’ desires, and produce alluring accessories. And if the designers have a sound knowledge of the diverse cultures and interests, that’s really a good deal for them.
The average salary for a jewellery designer holding a BA degree in the subject is around Rs 50,000 per month. However, with a Master’s degree one can expect even heavier salary packages.
To sum up, BA in jewellery designing is becoming a popular choice for students who wish to infuse creativity into their work. The salary packages for B.A. in Jewellery designing graduates start with Rs 4 lakh and above depending on the skills and knowledge.
The writer is director and creative head, Motiwala & Sons.