MIJM offers training in metalwork, casting, fabrication and stone setting, and also management.

In the last 6 - 8 years, the jewellery industry has been booming in India. Exports of jewellery play an important role in the nation's economy and earning of foreign currency. Job opportunities can be found in jewellery making and retailing.

Making use of the boom, new avenues have opened up for development and training, skill enhancement in designing and production of jewellery. Nowadays, jewellery makers use cutting stones, welding with lasers and engraving and make use of computer-aided design (CAD) software.

Good job opportunities are available in national and international jewellery-making companies in India such as Tanishq, Inter Gold Gems etc. The jewellery makers and designers have a great scope in foreign countries too.

Technical training courses in jewellery making and gemmology are offered by several institutions in our country. However, management courses in this field are rare. Keeping in view the tremendous growth and scope of jewellery industries and the need for skilled management of people in this field, Manipal University has came out with a three-year BBA degree course at its campus in Manipal, which is the first and only one of its kind in the whole country. The courses include formal training in basic skills such as repair work, metalwork, casting, fabrication and stone setting, and also management of the industry.

Comprehensive

“The course contents are carefully chosen by both academicians and industrialists to fulfil the needs of the industry” says Madhav Shanbhag, Director of Manipal Institute of Jewellery Management (MIJM). Unlike other institutes which offer diploma or short-term courses, MIJM aims at coverage of all aspects related to the jewellery industry by introducing related topics in the various semesters. The subjects include jewellery designing by CAD/CAM, ornament designing, management skills, gemmology, workshop practice, and international trade of jewellery. The sixth semester is oriented for industrial projects to give practical exposure to the students. For this, the institute has already tied up with many reputed jewellery industries.

“After undergoing the six-semester course, our students are capable of running industrial units independently,” says Prof. Shanbhag.

Most of the students of the previous year's batch have been selected by many reputed companies, before completion of their projects, which indicates the quality of education and prompt guidance by the faculty. Moreover, the Institute is regularly organising several workshops and seminars with the involvement of jewellery companies to give the latest knowledge to the students.

Qualification

For this course, the minimum qualification required is 10+2 in any discipline, or any degree. Diploma holders can directly get entry into the third semester. BBA-holders of this course may enrol for the MBA course at any university in the country or abroad.

The institute has a computer laboratory, workshop and all other modern facilities.

Some specialised courses are taught by guest faculty to give more exposure in the related fields. Admission for the new batch has already started and there is entry for only limited numbers. For more details regarding the course, one may contact Prof. Shanbhag, Director, MIJM, Manipal University-576 104, Ph: 99004 06232, 98801 68032.

(The writer is Assistant Professor, Chemistry Department, National Institute of Technology-Karnataka, Surathkal, Mangalore - 575 025) E-mail : isloor@yahoo.com