By Julia Florman ’20
Below the hustle and bustle of mailboxes, students, visitors and artists running to grab food or see a show, lives the quiet oasis of practice rooms and student workshops. Among them is the Donald Claflin Jewelry Studio. Here, you’ll find students hard at work creating personal projects, working on assignments for classes, participating in instructor-led classes that take place every Tuesday, chatting and listening to music.
Jeff Georgantes is the director and one of the instructors of the jewelry studio, and has been at the Hop for 10 years. He describes the studio as “a restaurant that doesn’t take reservations–you never know who’s going to show up.” This description of the jewelry studio really gets to the heart of what the workshop is all about: it’s a comfortable and fun environment for students across campus, from undergraduate to the medical and business schools, to unwind and work on interesting projects. The shop is extremely popular, and between 700 and 900 students visit every term.
On an average day, there are students working on a variety of projects. Lily, an ’18, can be found working on a project for her architecture classes. Dammy, a ’16, can be found making a ring as a personal project.
A major upside to working on projects in the studio is that there are no requirements, and no graded classes. Some students come in knowing exactly what they want to do, and exactly how to make it. Others have no idea, and the studio staff will often play the role of “jewelry-making councilors.” Starting a project is extremely easy–there is a $12 fee to use the studio per term, and individual projects usually cost between $3 and $10. The classes are also open to students of all experience levels, and typically cost $15. These classes range in topic, and include learning how to use a jeweler’s saw, welding brass or copper, and cutting and polishing cabochon gemstone.
The jewelry studio is open six days a week, Monday through Saturday.
I’m an undecided major from New York City, and love watching and participating in the arts. Growing up in New York, I loved having opportunities to attend shows and concerts, and constantly grow as an artist. At Dartmouth, I’m in Fusion (a student dance group), and I’m involved with some political organizations.