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In response to the poster wondering about good jewelry education:

The best jewelry education is:
-trade school.

I always advise people younger than me who want to get into
jewelry that they forget college jewelry programs and go to trade
school. I learned more in one week at the Jewelry Design
Institute (JDI) with Allyson Young than in 3 semesters of college
classes. (okay, slight exageration.)

My advise? If you can move, and depending on your present degreed
status and goals/time: go to either the Paris Junior College in
Paris Texas, or to JDI, Revere Academy, or GIA. Get the associate
degree from the first, or complete a certificate program from one
of the others.

If you don’t have time/money for that, create your own cirriculum
of workshops locally/nationally and get a job working for a
jeweler. If you can’t get a job as a jeweler, then get a job as a
runner, get into the industry and get yourself known.

IMHO, trade school and apprenticeships are way more valuable than
college degrees (though it doesn’t hurt to have that). Get into
the industry and start proving yourself/getting yourself known as
soon as possible. That’s it.

-Elaine Luther
Studio 925
Chicago, Illinois, USA