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Metals and Jewelry Design MFA

Program overview

The MFA is a professional degree for practicing artists, craftspeople, or designers who desire to leave a lasting impression on their fields by devotion to their work and high standards of discipline and artistic ideals. The MFA is generally a two-year, full-time program that involves the presentation of a thesis. The thesis includes written documentation and the formal exhibition of a body of work.


The MFA in metals and jewelry design provides students a broad exposure to metal working techniques, expands knowledge of applied design, strengthens perceptual and philosophical concepts, and develops an individual mode of expression. This sequence leads to the master’s thesis, inaugurated by the student and overseen by the faculty. The program is structured on the basis of individual needs, interests, and background preparation, as may be determined through faculty counseling.

Metals and jewelry design, MFA degree, typical course sequence

CourseSem. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
CMTJ-701 Metals and Jewelry Design Graduate Studio l 6
CMTJ-702 Metals and Jewelry Design Graduate Studio ll 6
ARTH-601 Forms of Inquiry 3
ARTH-605 Thinking About Making: The Practice of Art in a Global Society 3
CGEN-702 Crafts Graduate Seminar 3
  Open Graduate Elective 9
Second Year
CMTJ-790 Metals and Jewelry Design Thesis Initiation 6
CMTJ-890 Metals and Jewelry Design Thesis Resolution 9
CGEN-703 Thesis Implementation 3
CGEN-704 Thesis Review 3
  Open Graduate Elective 3
  CIAS Studio Electives 6
Total Semester Credit Hours 60

Admission requirements

To be considered for the MFA program in metals and jewelry design, candidates must fulfill the following requirements:

  • Hold a baccalaureate degree in a field of art, science, or education from a regionally accredited institution in the United States,
  • Demonstrate, through the quality of the undergraduate record and creative production, a genuine, professional potential,
  • Submit official transcripts (in English) of all previously completed undergraduate and graduate course work (undergraduate degree should include 50 semester hours in studio courses), and
  • Complete a graduate application.
  • International students whose native language is not English must submit scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language. Minimum scores of 550 (paper-based) or 80 (Internet-based) are required. Scores from the International English Language Testing System are accepted in place of the TOEFL. A minimum score of 6.5 is required. For those applicants applying from countries where the baccalaureate degree is not awarded for programs in the practice of art may be admitted to graduate study if the diploma or certificate received approximates the standards of the BFA, BA, or BS degrees, and if their academic records and portfolios indicate an ability to meet graduate standards.

Additional information

Studio Residency program

The School for American Crafts offers a Studio Residency program for students in ceramics, furniture design, glass and metals and jewelry design. Residence positions are limited and are awarded after the review of all applicants’ portfolios, transcripts, and references. An interview is required. Accepted residents are required to register for one independent study credit during each semester of residence. 

Accepted residents are expected to be present in their assigned studio during class hours and to contribute up to 10 hours of work per week in the main studio. These work hours are coordinated and overseen by the faculty in the resident's discipline. In exchange, the school will provide workspace, access to facilities, and supportive instruction. The resident is invited to participate in the full range of studio activities.

Participants may be those seeking additional studio experience prior to undergraduate or graduate study, early career professionals, or teachers on leave who wish to work again in an academic studio environment. The faculty in each discipline will make decisions concerning appropriate candidates.

Inquiries should be made to the Studio Residency Program, School for American Crafts, College of Imaging Arts and Sciences, Rochester Institute of Technology, 73 Lomb Memorial Drive, Rochester, NY 14623-5603.

Career Outcomes

Job Titles

Educators, designers, holloware artisans jewelers, production coordinators, blacksmiths, fabricators, gem setters, craftsman, silversmiths, sculptors, model makers, shop managers, craftsmen, gallery managers


Assistant master craftsperson; create craft pieces; operate craft studio; teach in school systems privately; design jewelry, holloware, one-of-a kind pieces, product development marketing

Recent Employers

Oneida Silver, Knoll Associates, Tiffany & Co.

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