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Apprenticeship question

I may be going out on a limb here, but a limb is the best place to

After taking an interest of late in the art of Jewellery making, and
reading the many posts offered by the Orchid Community, and also
reading several articles and books I have found at my local library,
I’ve decided to take my interest to the next level. I’m currently
unemployed, and the job prospects in my current industry field are
few and far between (considering the insummountable number of
co-applicants for IT Helpdesks). I am now interested in commencing
a Jewellery Apprenticeship (even though here in australia it is the
longest period apprenticeship on offer, at 5 years).

My question is where do I start?

Apprenticeships are the big thing the Australian Government is
pushing, however when I called their helpdesk for I was
told that it all depended on finding an employer. So how could I
approach Jewellers, or Manufacturers for an apprenticeshi?

Should I be asking about an apprenticeship with them or should I
send my resume, along with a cover letter to various Jewellers in the
area. Or do I go through other channels first.

I will be calling back the “New Apprenticeships Hotline” tomorrow
and asking these questions, but if anyone here has any suggestions I
would appreciate it.

Even though I dont have alot of experience in jewellery making as
yet, reading what I have so far has only “soldered” my interest in
this career, and I just want to get on with it now.

Trevor Ffrench
Perth, Western Australia


Is there a professional Jewelry or Goldsmith’s trade organization
in your area? Perhaps a Jewelers Union? Contact them for direction
and suggestions.

Secondly…you may want to look into the local Adult Education
Schools. Places that offer continuing education to adults and
graduates such as language and art classes. They usually have long
standing metalsmithing classes for beginners and do not require
years of commitment. It would enable you to get your feet wet and
see if you have the aptitude and basic skills.

You could always go door to door to your local metalsmiths and see
what’s available. But the time and attention required to teach is
quite a drain on most goldsmiths and you may end up paying someone
to teach you. What you need are both a controlled program (state or
union supervised apprenticeship) or a trade school.

Forget the art design schools which may teach you design skills but
rarely the basic fabrication skills needed to execute them.

Good luck.
Peace. Kim.

hello trevor, can’t help you with the tech stuff on apprenticeships,
but tafe and other places offer courses in jewellery making ( non
apprenticed, and often the same teacher), so if you start one of
these, not only might it give you some ideas about whether or not
this field is really for you, it might help to show a potential
employer that you really are keen to be an apprentice. Who knows, you
might even decide to just keep on under your own steam and become
self employed …always the best option, imho good luck with
whatever you choose, Christine in S A