I was in the "Luster Exhibition at the BMICH, Colombo" when I came across the Gem and Jewellery Institute Stall. Its a pity I did not know about it all these years. Apparently it was established in 2002.
The following is from their brochure, which they were distributing at the show.
The Gem and Jewelley Institute (GJI) is the foremost center for vocational training in Jewellery Design, Manufacture & Lapidary training in Sri Lanka.
Based on a recommendation by Peter Raw, a consultant for the UK based World Gold Council in 2000, GJI was established with equity participation from eleven leading private sector jewellery manufacturing exporters and retailers, four state sector institutions and the apex trading association, with the aim of imparting a high level of education and training to students, and thereby enhance the product quality of Sri Lankan jewellery and expanding its scope in the domestic as well as international markets.
GJI,a non profit organization committed to excellence in education, is one of its kind in the country's educational set up. One of its objectives is to encourage the youth of today to seriously consider the option a career in the gem and jewellery industry.GJI also imparts the necessary knowledge and techniques for professionals who are already in the industry to compete in the global market place. Over the past few years the institute has made substantial progress towards satisfying the industry's demand for skilled professionals.
The GJI is assisted by two state agencies, the National Gem and Jewellery Authority(NGJA) and the Sri Lanka Export Development Board(SLEDB). The National Gem and Jewellery Authority provides sponsorships for students enrolling in GJI education programs, which is of immense value to both students and firms in the industry.
Since its inception in 2002, GJI has been working with two principal donor agencies in realizing its goals,upgrading the sector and serving the country at large.
In 2005 GJI received Technical Assistance from USAID funded "The Competitiveness Program"(TCP) to sponsor trainers from the Texas Institute of Jewelry Technology (TIJT). From 2005-2007 the institute received sponsorship from the European Commission (EC) in Capacity Building and skills development of the sector with the Technical Assistance from the prestigious University of Central England. In 2007 the GJI received Technical Assistance from the USAID funded TCP in building up a Lapidary School in the institute.
At present located in the heart of Colombo, the institute has fully equipped facilities in Jewellery Designing, Manufacturing and Lapidary. The courses are conducted by a panel of highly talented practitioners with considerable local experience and foreign education. The institute is governed by a group of 10 professionals representing the industry in Sri Lanka.This active participation of the industry in managing its affairs is looked upon as the biggest strength og GJI.
Looking back at its short span of history, GJI has a humble pride of being able to add value to the sector and contribute to its growth.
With a glance at the future, the GJI sees itself as a nationally reputed, regionally recognized full-fledged vocational training institute offering quality assured, sector specific training in all aspects from Designing to Management and Marketing.