I believe the following is what they are looking for, this wasn't
easy to find. There are only five in California; the first two are
worth looking into.
http://www.evc.edu/sshape/jewelry.htm (Private school.)
Here are the others.
http://www.palomar.edu (art 150, 151, 270)
As you mentioned Ventura or Camarillo, I would suggest to most if in
that area,something like this, instead. To Wit: "The fully functional
shop allows members of various skill to cut and polish their rock
finds under the guided supervision of an experienced CGMC Club
member. A reservation with any Shop Foreman is required for shop
access (their numbers are listed on the front inside cover of our
monthly bulletin The Rocky Review). For those too new to have their
own rock materials, there are some nice pieces available in the shop
from member donations that may be worked." http://www.cgamc.org
Or even, this http://www.ogms.net/Classes.html
I do not have a clue why this kind of resource is so often ignored,
as if it is of no worth. The topic of how to get started is always
coming up. After all the same basic skills can be learned, often well
above the basic. In any event should one decide to lean more, they
are a light year ahead. You may be surprised at some of what is
availabe out there, to wit. Live in the area, want a piece of opal to
cut that above class, nice enough without bankruptcy, not sure whom
to trust for the money? After all how would you know? See the first
below. Also see their instructions and class (all) links.
http://www.cincilapidary.org To find a club near you
I will also mention that there are often other resources, a class in
Ogden is affiliated with the Golden Spike Club. The following
classes are not (they are all reasonably close), North Ogden, Roy
(they have a centrifugal caster), Clearfield, Kaysvile, and a new one
in Riverdale. I think these are to be found under parks and
recreation. In any event your fellow gem and jewelry junkies will be
aware of them. You could learn a thing or two, clubs also put on
shows, as in have stone, turquoise, lapis, opal, and some faceting
grades, as well as (in Ogden) Diamond Pacific selling tools. And etc.
Never think you will learn it all, take advantage of a gift horse.