Rio Rancho, NM (population: 85,837) has three jewelry schools within a 500-mile radius of its city center. Northern Arizona University, the highest ranked school in this group with a jewelry program, has a total student population of 23,597. It is the 225th highest ranked school in the USA and the highest in the state of Arizona.
Jewelry students from Rio Rancho schools who go on to become jewelers, jewelry designers, jewelry makers, jewelry repairers, etc. have a good chance at finding employment. For example, there are 23,410 people working as jewelers and precious stone and metal workers alone in the US, and their average annual salary is $36,620. Also, Craft artists make on average $33,070 per year and there are about 5,380 of them employed in the US today.
Rio Rancho lies in Sandoval county, which is one of the 23 counties in New Mexico. Overall, the Albuquerque area has 381,870 total employed workers according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, with a 0.6% unemployment rate, $19.31/hr average worker wage, and a $40,170 average annual salary.
Of the 3 jewelry schools with a 500-mile radius of Rio Rancho, only 2 have a student population over 10k. After taking into account tuition, living expenses, and financial aid, Northern Arizona University comes out as the most expensive ($11,306/yr) for jewelry students, with The University of Texas at El Paso as the lowest, reported at only $5,224/yr.