Jewelry schools real reviews

I have no idea what methodology they ostensibly know nothing about,
but almost all have methods and techniques to offer that I
previously knew nothing about. All have been very much worth my
time and money, with very very few exceptions. The point is,
classes are, to some extent, what you make of them. 

What it means is what it says. I see I have touched upon a sensitive
issue perhaps because you teach jewelry classes. How many of those
who present themselves as teachers have had training in teaching.
How many of these institutions provide teaching supervision or
oversight? Natural ‘teachers’ are rare and more precious than pearls

Methodology is the study of how to present material to others, i.e.
students. You apparently have been fortunate in your classroom
experiences. Except for the time the instructor took your group
shopping for shoes; was that worth the time and money?

My comments are simply one person’s opinion; as always others
experiences may vary.


The point is, classes are, to some extent, what you make of them. 

Great point, Noel.

I believe that the workshop and class-room experience is a two-way
street. Both instructor and attendee/student share in the
responsibility. Both parties need to be present.

There is a difference, I believe, between the perceived requirements
for the workshop instructor and academic or institutional teacher. A
workshop is most often a small class that is focused on a particular
subject, most often taught by someone who is a practitioner and,
hopefully, excels in that subject and uses it in their professional

While it is certainly best when that instructor is an effective and
engaging teacher, I don’t believe that those qualities are as an
intrinsic part of the experience as they are in the case of a
professional teacher.

Whether it be a workshop or college classroom, a good teacher can
present the same in a variety of ways to a variety of
learning styles. A good student is present, focused and asks

My two cents.


I am a Jeweler-Metalsmith that was kicked to the curb with CFS and
fibromyalgia eight years ago this month. After working for years for
everybody else I had just begun to branch out on my own doing
repairs for several other jewelers and making my own work as
commissions. I got my BFA in metal in '83 from Massachusetts College
of Art and have always worked (except for when my daughter was a
baby), until I got sick. My career came to a painful crashing halt.
It turns out that years of metals, chemicals, overwork etc were some
of the contributors. Frustrating is not the word.

I am at this moment crawling my way with tiny baby steps back to
doing work, with an exceptionally careful attitude in every way.
After losing my memory and being bedridden for the first year and a
half, I very painfully tried to get back some kind of life. Five
years ago I forced myself to make some pieces which were
subsequently stolen from the gallery where I had them. That is the
last time I did any real amount of work.

Ganoksin has helped me stay in touch with the metal world. I am
amazed at the amount of info that is shared so openly after the years
of school, apprenticeships and such that I have been through. It has
been my expereince that jeweler’s secrets are guarded and treasured
as their bread and butter. I don’t think the people new to the medium
have any idea of the centuries of walls that are coming down here.

I saw Jaynemarie’s post and felt the urge to speak up and say,
“hello, I exist” so to speak. Good luck to you Janynemarie and best
wishes to all.

Bethe Burke
Antares Metal Design


I’ve been reading this thread w/ interest as I’ve been dealing w/ a
major handicap for the past 15 years (reactive arthritis & ankylosing
spondylitis). I haven’t read anything negative in the replies to your
post or towards you-I thought everyone was very sensitive toward your
plight. I may have missed the negative ones or they may have replied
to you personally… Yes, everyone seems very supportive & positive
towards the Revere school but that is their experience. I’ve heard
great things about the Revere school & wished it were a bit closer &
I more able. There are many workshops & classes I haven’t taken
because of my “handicap”. Though I had been a working metalsmith for
10 years before this hit so hard. When I did take classes & this was
when I was newly diagnosed I had to miss a lot of them or leave early
& of course people worry about you & are concerned & then the class
is all about you (I don’t mean you you, I mean the general you. I
guess I mean me). I also felt it was disrespectful toward my
instructor-though she couldn’t have been kinder or more
accommodating. Being disabled one has the right to expect handicapped
accessible buildings/classrooms, etc., It doesn’t give one the right
to be disruptive or expect extensive special treatment. I’m not
saying this is necessarily the case in point, but you need to
remember that there are 20 or so other people in your classes who
have paid what you have & have their own expectations. Chronic,
constant pain & fatigue are great hurdles to overcome in any
situation & I applaud you taking on a new endeavor with all you’re
dealing with. Perhaps you might consider private lessons? As my hands
become more & more useless, I’ve had to rethink a lot of my methods &
acknowledge my limitations. I would like to learn to use PMC & have
considered going the private lesson route-if funds allow & an
instructor found. The biggest thing I miss about classes & workshops
is the feedback & being surrounded by like-minded people & being
inundated with all the ideas & creativity which I now get from
Orchid. JayneMarie, you’re doing good work, you’re selling on Etsy.
Disabled or not, you’ve accomplished a lot. But it doesn’t get
easier, it gets a lot harder. A lot. The more handicapped you become
the higher the hurdles. So you might make it easier on yourself by
losing some of the anger & giving people the benefit of the doubt.
Good luck in your endeavors.

Be well, do good work… Cristine McC

I only wanted the accommodation for a couple of rest periods in
the afternoon. 

I confess I am curious. Were you asking to be allowed to leave the
room for short rests (in which case, why even ask? Who could
reasonably object to that?) or were you asking that everyone stop
work so you didn’t miss anything while you rested? Or something else?
The second is far less clear-cut, especially in a situation where
people paid a lot of money and want to pack in as much as possible.
While you should not be shut out on account of your disabilty (and I
also suffer from fibromyalgia) everyone else should not be penalized
because of it, either. I do not claim to have the solution.


One thing I might suggest for persons with any sort of disability
planning on attending a school, or workshop for that matter, private
or public: Always, always, honestly discuss your issues and needs
before you sign up. Ask up front questions that would have a bearing
on your situation. More often than not, when approached in this
manner, the institution will be willing to work with you. If you
find your personal needs cannot be met, don’t sign up. It’s that
simple. There is a certain personal responsibility that needs to be
realized in these situations. If you are going to a great expense for
an education, you should know ahead of time if it is a place for you.
In addition, is it really fair to others in the class, who probably
had to sacrifice and save to attend an institution for an intensive
education, to be expected to stop working, stop learning, so that one
person can take a break several times a day.

Linda Lankford

Hi All,

As a disabled artist I would like to have some input regarding this
thread. I don’t really want to address a specific school as much as I
want to make a few statements about how I personally advocate for
myself. When I take any type of class or instruction I contact the
teachers privately before the class starts. I give them information
about my behavior that will be unusual because of my disability. This
is shared on my own accord so that they don’t think I am
trying to be disruptive. Doing this is not really required on my part
as it is private however I have broken the ice and they
feel free to ask questions and this opens communication in a relaxed
manner. This approach has worked very well.

Jaynemarie I am so sorry that you were humiliated and felt so
disrespected. No one should be treated bad because of a disability
that they cannot control. People please remember that no one who is
disabled ever asked to be in their situation. I was able bodied for
35 years and have been disabled for 26 years so I know “both sides of
the coin”.

I hope that in some way these comments will be helpful to
instructors and students.

Cathy Wheless

I had the pleasure of attending the Revere Academy for seven
consecutive months–October 2008 through April 2009–first during the
Jewelry Technician Program in Fall/Winter, then taking open session
classes to earn my Graduate Jeweler Diploma, additional classes–any
and all that I could fit into my diploma schedule–and then a full
month of classes during the Masters’ Symposiums in April.

I cannot recommend the Revere Academy more highly. It far surpassed
my hopes and expectations.

I knew I wanted to make jewelry. I knew I had gone as far as I could
with the whole self-taught thing. I knew that I needed help. So…

I researched, and as I researched one school consistently came
up–Revere Academy. So, I researched the Revere Academy. (Yes, I am
very thorough–perhaps obsessively so.) I researched Alan. I
researched each instructor named in the Revere Academy brochure. I
got my hands on Alan’s books. I emailed former students who I could
track down on the internet. What I found was a school that had a
marvelous public and industry reputation, was affectionately written
and spoken about by its alumni, a founder who is consistenly lauded
for his place in jewelry education, a staff with a breadth and depth
of experience in the jewelry industry that was very impressive, a
staff of instructors who are sought after visiting instructors at
other schools and venues, and a curriculum that ran the gamut from
basic fabrication and setting courses to classes that worked with
cutting edge materials and focused on very specialized areas of
jewelry making. A tour of the Revere Academy and subsequent phone
calls with the staff left me equally impressed.

That is how I chose a jewelry school–a lot of time and energy
devoted to researching. Afterall, attending a school like the Revere
Academy is a committment of my money and my time, both of which I
hold as valuable. Before you make a decision about which school to
attend, I suggest you spend a reasonable amount of your time and
energy doing the research.

As for some of the other things that have been said in this

Every student in a Revere Academy class is an adult–a paying
adult–who is free to take breaks, leave the classroom, work at their
own speed, put as much or as little energy into a project or a class
as that adult wants to as long as it does not interfere with the
learning experience of the other students (paying students.) I often
took a breather during the afternoon in addition to the scheduled
break when instructor demos were completed or scheduled for later. I
took a break without anyone’s permission and I understood that the
class did not stop just because I had chosen to leave the room.

Many students in classes I took had a disability of one kind or
another. The Revere Academy staff did their very best to accommodate
any student as long as those accomodations did not infringe on other
students’ learning experiences. One of my favorite fellow students
was a young man who was confined to a wheelchair. That man earned
both his Jeweler Technician and Graduate Jeweler diplomas during his
time there. Another young man who I was fond of had certain learning
disabilities and I know, because I witnessed it, that both Alan and
the instructors went out of their ways to make certain he was
keeping up and was feeling OK in the classes. He earned his Jeweler
Technician Deploma. Any time you are fortunate enough to have such
inspiring people working and learning next to you it is a benefit to
the class as a whole, and I think that the Revere Academy staff
understands the rich return that results from their efforts to
accomodate those students who have special needs.

As we all know, making jewelry is mentally and physically taxing.
Learning to make jewelry can be even more challenging to the mind and
body. We all need to honestly evaluate our abilities and weaknesses
to decide if any given opportunity–educational or otherwise–is an
opportunity we are up to making the most of.

Someone in this thread said no one specifically says why they liked
a given school. I could go through any number of things, but I think
I will say that I recommend the Revere Academy because the foundation
of skills and the confidence I gained with those skills fundamentally
changed my relationship to jewelry making. When I walked into my
studio after having been away for seven months, I sat down at my
bench and a feeling of serene competence came over me–a feeling that
makes any future adventures in jewelry making much more likely to be

If anyone is interested in attending the Revere Academy and would
like to speak to a relatively recent student who stayed in San
Francisco for seven months just to attend the school, please feel
free to contact me off the boards. I’d be more than happy to attempt
to answer any questions about Revere or staying in San Francisco you
may have.

Leslie Leirness Jewelry Designs

only wanted the accommodation for a couple of rest periods in the

What were your requirements for the rest periods? Ten minutes? An
hour? Did you want to be excused from the classroom for that time or
did you want the entire class to stop while you rested?


Hi Dan,

Where is that located? I have never heard of it; which is not
surprising, I am not surprised by my lack of knowledge of a new field
every day. I am anxiously awaiting your opinion of this school as an
alternative to my going out of state. Because of my health, I can’t
start any training until next year (long story); but any information
ahead of time is always appreciated; since I have been mainly self
trained to this point and I know I need classes desperately. I can
fake it; but I really need to be taught how to do it correctly and to
really understand the vocabulary everybody takes for granted. Book
learning is one thing; but classes are a completely different

So, I really look forward to you thoughts and opinions on the Cal.
Institute of Jewelry.


I have spent quite a bit of time at the Revere Academy dating back to
1986. I’ve been there as a continuing student over the course of 20+
years and I have also been there as a teacher and faculty member for
the past 5 years.

I’ve been a classmate with hundreds of students at Revere and I’ve
been an instructor to hundreds of students as well. I have both
studied alongside and taught several individuals who were challenged
in some way, either by learning disabilities or physical limitations
or in some cases both. In every case everything possible was done by
the academy as an institution, as well as by each of the staff and
faculty members to see to the needs and the requirements of every

If a student has limitations of any kind, or anxiety over their
choice to attend educational classes, it is incumbent upon the
student to address their concerns to the venue prior to registering,
to ensure their needs can be met and their participation can be

If there is an impediment in any individual’s situation to fully
participating in a group class without causing disruption or
devaluing the experience of the rest of the students private
instruction is an alternative and would likely be a better choice.

Michael David Sturlin

I only wanted to excused from the classroom myself for approximately
1/2 hour for the rest period. The rest of the class would go on
without me and what ever I missed would be my problem. I would never
ask that the entire class be stopped just for me! That would be rude
and inconsiderate. So, I didn’t think I was asking for a whole lot of
accomodation for my rest periods. I knew I would not be finishing my
projects in class; so I had already asked if I could mail them back
in for a critique.

Jaynemarie Crawford

Obviously, a lot of you did not read my reply two days ago. I am
angry about the way I was treated. I talked to the instructors about
my disability and my anger is at all the posts from people who have
come down hard at me for having the audacity to actually critise Alan
Revere and his school. I did not expect the class to stop for me.
All I asked for was a rest period for me in the afternoon, because it
was too stressful to continue at the pace they had set. The was all.
And for that, I was instantantly cast as the bad guy in the “spagetti
western” mentanity that sprang up as soon as I said a word that did
not praise the Revere Institue.

And, yes, I do understand, the value of hard work and the
coorperation that should exsist between a student and a professor. I
studied and became an Electical Engineer in the time when there were
so few women in engineering, I was usually the only one in the entire
company! And, before I quit, due to personal reasons, I had risen to
a directors position. So, don’t preach to me about the value of hard
work. I know what hard work really means!

So, the anger is at all of you who constantly question me about what
I was asking for. I was only asking for something for me myself.
Nothing that would affect anyone else. And, If Revere has changed, I
am glad. I certainly gave them enough of my mind to let them know
that what they did to me was totally unexacceptable!

I will admit to falling asleep during one boring hour and a half
lecture in the afternoon. Well, that must have bruised someone’s
fragile ego; but what do you expect after lunch. The lecture had
nothing to do with the subject we were supposed to be learning; but
he liked to talk and we were supposed to listen with baited breath
until he gave us our assignment. Now, that would have been a perfect
time for me to take my break – but that was not allowed; instead we
were forced to listed to him drone on about his apprenticeship with
Alan and how badly his father treated him when he was learning his
familiy’s trade. Ho-Hum.

Now, does this give you enough about what I was asking
for and that I was prepared for hard work! I hope so, because I’m
getting tired of answering the same questions again and again.

Oh, I didn’t answer the final question and that is my disability. I
have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS). And before you dismiss that as
just being tired. Let’s for the sake of arguement, image yourself
with the flu – high fever, everything one you body hurts, even your
hair. That’s that pain of Chronic Fatigue. I live with that
constantly! Every day with NO BREAK! Now, continue with the fatigue
of the flu, where you just cannot move a muscle. That’s that Chronic
Fatigue I live with. Day in and day out with NO BREAK! But, I have to
live, so I have to learn to live with it and deal with it at the same
time as trying to have a normal life with my familiy and trying to
start a career as a jeweler.

So having a small break of a half of an hour in the afternoon, by
myself, not sidruptting the class, is all I was asking for. And,
having it denied. And not only denied; but being kicked out of the
Academy because of have CFS. Now, I hope you can understand, why all
your questions and flames make me angry. Actually, they really don’t
make me angry; they just hurt. I didn’t ask for this disability.
Before this disability; I was a very active person, who ran 5 and
10K event with her husband and had fun with her 2 daugthers. CFS
changed all that! And my girls were only 3 and 5. Now I hope you are
happy that you made me dredge all that up and relive it all again and
realize what I lost.

Jaynemarie Crawford

A fascinating thread, with a great lesson anyone can benefit from.
Nobody does everything right all the time. The harsh criticism of the
Revere Academy by one person does not seem to be getting much
traction or sympathetic “me-too” testimony. The complaint may be
absolutely justified, but the Revere Academy apparently has
consistently operated a high quality program with integrity and
satisfied students to such an extent that the accusation does not
seem credible, as expressed in several posts.

All of us in the jewelry business, especially if we are dealing with
precious materials, have to present the perception of integrity and
competence. When things go wrong, and eventually they do, there is
the potential for damage to the reputation. If we have impressed the
public with consistent and real integrity in the past, we can take a
hit once in a while. If you approach life with a
what-can-I-get-away-with-today attitude, don’t expect people to come
to your defense when there is a disagreement. Consistently do your
best and always treat people honestly and you are much more likely

Stephen Walker

Except for the time the instructor took your group shopping for
shoes; was that worth the time and money? 

Hah! Forgot I told you about that… :>) Yes, that week of class was
very worth my time and money, though obviously the time we spent at
shoe stores was not. But I leaned a LOT from the week, in spite of
the shortcomings of the instructor, and am by no means sorry I took
the class. Pretty outrageous, though, wasn’t it? That was during the
Masters Symposium at Revere, hard as it is to believe… I do not
agree that teaching necessarily needs to be taught, and, yes, I am a
teacher who has never taken a class on education. I have had plenty
of teachers in my life who were “certified” who were terrible, too,
but really my point was my last line, and I stand by it-- in general,
classes are what you make them.


Where is that located? I have never heard of it; which is not
surprising, I am not surprised by my lack of knowledge of a new
field every day. 

Hi, the school is located in sacramento and you can find info on
thier website at It is a great school and has
much to offer. E-mail the school and let me know how to contact you
and I can tell you more. I am off to class right now.

Take care

... Whether it be a workshop or college classroom, a good teacher
can present the same in a variety of ways to a variety
of learning styles. A good student is present, focused and asks

Add to this the fact that no matter how good the teacher or how good
the student, sometimes they don’t “click.” Sometimes personality or
other issues make particular students and teachers a bad fit and both
come out of the experience without the result desired by both.

Mary Ellin D’Agostino, PhD

I love the pros and cons of what everyone says of the Revere Academy,
but does anyone know of a school in South Florida? While I’d give
anything to have the money to go to San Francisco to study for a year
or so, I’m stuck here in the Ft. Lauderdale area. :slight_smile: The only one
I’ve heard about is the American School of Jewelry and everything
I’ve heard about them is negative. I’m willing to take classes on an
individual basis if I can find funding. But I would like to get a
Jeweler Technician and eventually Graduate Jewelry diplomas.

MikiCat Designs

If you can’t find a school in your area, then try to find a job in a
quick fix quiosk in a mall. You would be amazed at how much you learn
in a situation like that.


From the beginning you stated that it was your disability that was
the issue and that you did not feel that it was met with with
understanding and accommodation.

The response was to defend the teaching level and reputation of the
school…and that is where the huge difference lies.

It was being read and responded to on 2 completely different planes
and that has created more hurt.

Sometimes we think that understanding comes with walking in the
others shoes for 1 mile…BUT sometimes we cannot even handle half
of 1 shoe for 1 hour.

Thanks for the reminder that people should always come before
institutions even one so highly esteemed as Revere.