Latest News

Next Generation Jewellers

26 Mar 2013

NMIT is cementing its leading position in jewellery design training, with students from its Fairfield campus making the shortlist for two of the top jewellery design awards in Australia.

NMIT students have places in the AGR Matthey 'Next Generation Jewellery Design Awards' as well as the Victorian Worldskills Awards, jewellery section.

Tae Schmeisser from the Advanced Diploma in Jewellery, and Veronika Arkins, an apprentice jewellery student, are two of only 25 students nationally selected as finalists to participate in the 'Next Generation' Awards. They have received $1,000 worth of gold, silver and precious stones to complete their submitted designs.

Second year apprentice Veronika Arkins says it will be 'a bit nerve-wracking' working on her design in 18 carat gold. Her winning design is a ring based on the theme 'The Gambler'. Veronika is from Tasmania, where she worked in the jewellery industry for nearly thirty years before deciding to bite the bullet and begin her apprenticeship. There was no opportunity for her to study jewellery design in Tasmania, so she gets a government subsidy to come to NMIT for her training.

She and fellow NMIT student Tae Schmeisser, who is studying the Advanced Diploma in Jewellery, will submit their finished works to be judged in the 'AGR Matthey Next Generation' finals in July. The winners and runners up will share in cash prizes to the value of $48,000, and all the finalists will have exposure to key industry figures and media.

NMIT jewellery students are also heading to the national Worldskills in July in Sydney, after scooping the pool in the Victorian competition. Patrick Taylor was the winner in Victorian Metro section, Tyler Hogan in the Victorian Regional, and Tasmanian student Halina Kaufman, who studies at Fairfield, won the Tasmanian section.

The National Worldskills championship involves three days of competition. Students are given a challenging design and a set amount of materials, and are judged on their skills in executing the design.

This year's students will be hoping to follow in the footsteps of 2007 National Worldskills winner and NMIT Apprentice of the Year Joel Drew. After the Australian title Joel went on to win a silver medal at the International level in Japan, an outstanding result.


Interview / Photo Opportunity

Media enquiries should be directed to the NMIT Communications Officer, James Gardener, on (03) 92691579, 0413 483 182 or

NMIT (Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE) - Situated on seven campuses and six training centres throughout Melbourne's north, NMIT delivers vocational training, higher education and lifelong learning capabilities for a global workforce. NMIT forges partnerships with community, industry and government to produce practical, solution orientated graduates capable of making meaningful contributions to their chosen field of endeavour.