SIX thousand youths interested in a career in jewellery design and manufacturing are to be trained at the Institute of Jewellery and Technology (IJT), at Tepa in the Ahafo Ano North District of the Ashanti Region.
The jewellery institute, which would provide employment opportunities for the youth, is an extension of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology’s (KNUST) Jewellery Design and Technology Centre (KJDTC).
Nana Adusei Atwenewa Ampem, paramount chief of Tepa, handed over to the President, John Dramani Mahama, during his recent tour in Ashanti, legal documents covering the 40-acre parcel of land for the construction of the 25-million-dollar institute which takes off at the end of this month.
The President indicated that Ghana would gain a lot from its gold if value was added to it and promised to enter into negotiation with KNUST on how to make IJT come to fruition to become the centre of excellence.
Mr. Joseph Kojo Arthur, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the KJDTC, and the brain behind IJT, told The Ghanaian Times that sets of modern computerised equipment used to design and manufacture jewellery had arrived from the United States of America for the project, and that the first batch of the youth would be trained for free.
He said 600 Ghanaian goldsmiths would be trained using the REVO 540CX, the first of its kind in Africa, to design and manufacture jewellery, and in turn, the goldsmiths would train the youth, adding that enrolment for the training of the youth had already started.
The IJT, just as the KJDTC, he said, would train people on how to manufacture jewelleries and other ornaments using gold ore and other minerals.
He was optimistic that the institute would kick-start a booming jewellery industry in Ghana and boost employment opportunities for the youth interested in a career in that sector.
Mr. Arthur said that, would make the country benefit more from the gold and other minerals it exports.
He explained that IJT would collaborate with the Council for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (COTVET) and KJDTC.
According to him, it would target goldsmiths who were not equipped with computer aided design and computer aided manufacturing and senior and junior high school graduates who, cannot further their education but have basic knowledge in computing to be selected by assembly members in their respective communities who are stakeholders of the project.
From Kingsley E. Hope, Kumasi