Early Salary

2 - 3 L

Mid Salary

6 - 7 L

Senior Salary

12 - 14 L

Academic Pressure

Medium

Job Pressure

Medium

	Gemologist

Gemology has been the art of identifying and evaluating gemstones. In today’s world, it has become a science and profession dealing with precious and semi-precious stones. A branch of mineralogy, it is considered  a geoscience.

What do they do?

For 22-year-old Aarti Shekhar, gemstones were never just shiny little things that people wore to enhance beauty. The incredible detail that each stone fascinated her from childhood. It is little wonder then that gemmology as a career was a natural path for her after graduation.

A graduate gemologist (GG), Shekhar’s acquisition of a small space in a premier mall in south Delhi is a reflection of her ambitions. The young gemmologist has a natural flair for observing and identifying stones, an activity which has become critical in the high value business of gemstone trade. “Gemology is often linked with astrology and that is where a gemologist steps in. A gemmologist’s job is to ascertain the quality and property of precious stones,” says Shekhar. S/he examines the true nature of stones and educates buyers.

The need for trained gemologists has spiralled in the past few years, owing to a greater consciousness amongst buyers. The jewellery trade, becoming scientifically oriented, requires a class of professionals who fit in between retailers and buyers. Greater costs involve greater risk and, therefore, a greater need for quality control. “It is a highly technical and scientific profession,” says Shekhar.

Another gemologist in the city, Swati Singhal agrees. “The work of a gemologist also includes providing elementary knowledge to people about what they buy,” she says. Shekhar warns, however, that the profession is not meant for all.

“Much of the success in this profession comes to those who have a genuine liking for precious stones -- what goes into their making, what natural processes change their characteristics and all other processes right from their raw to finished stage,” she says.

There are a number of institutes in India and abroad providing hands-on training in the ‘art’ of gemology (see box). At the elementary level, students begin with a basic gemology course that involves identification and grading of cut stones as well as theoretical lectures. This may be followed by an advanced course that introduces learners to the advanced equipment increasingly being used in the field. These include  the refractometer, spectrometer and poleroscope that help in accurately identifying minute features to determine the right price of a stone. Although very elementary knowledge of stones is required to take the course, most institutes have stringent examining processes.

Source: HT Horizon

Skills Needed

.   A genuine interest in the non-ceremonial attraction of precious and semi-precious stones
.   An eye for detail, capable of seeing the minutest of details that determine the grade, quality and worth of a stone 
.   A deep knowledge of not just stones but also of equipment
.   Good communication skills to deal with customers
.   The high cost retail dealings require integrity and honesty in customer dealings to win buyers’ trust
.   A genuine interest in the non-ceremonial attraction of precious and semi-precious stones
.   An eye for detail, capable of seeing the minutest of details that determine the grade, quality and worth of a stone 
.   A deep knowledge of not just stones but also of equipment
.   Good communication skills to deal with customers
.   The high cost retail dealings require integrity and honesty in customer dealings to win buyers’ trust

How do I get there?

Most institutions offer a graduate gemologist (GG) degree to graduates. Students need to clear a practical-cum-theoretical test to earn the GG credential.
An undergraduate may also apply for a degree in gemology but there are few reputable institutions offering degrees to school graduates.
The tuition fee for a typical six-month course abroad is between Rs 4 lakh to Rs 8 lakh.
A six-month course in a private college costs about Rs 1 lakh and less than half of that amount from a government institute

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