(NEW YORK) – The Women’s Jewelry Association Foundation is pleased to announce its annual scholarship recipients, who will receive a combined total of $54,000 in scholarship funds for the 2023-2024 year.
Funds for WJA Foundation scholarships are raised through individual donations and various fundraising events and initiatives held throughout the year, including its upcoming 40th Anniversary Ruby Gala Fundraiser taking place on Thursday, November 2nd in New York City. Tickets are available here.
Scholarship winners received awards in six different categories. These include the Radiant Minds Technology Scholarship, WJA Diversity Scholarships for GIA Education, the Gabriel Love Foundation Scholarship, the Cindy Edelstein Jewelry Design Scholarship, the Designer Category Student Scholarship, and the Designer/Creator Student Scholarship.
The Radiant Minds Technology Scholarship has been awarded to Jennifer Rosado, a student enrolled in UC Berkeley’s Coding Boot Camp. This scholarship is a collaboration between WJA Foundation, Jewelers Mutual Group, and Black in Jewelry Coalition, with the goal of providing women of color the education they need to be successful in tech-related jobs within the jewelry and watch industry. The recipient receives funding for a training or certification program focused on software engineering, including user-experience design, data analytics, and front and back-end design and web development, at a school of their choice, approved by the scholarship committee.
WJA Foundation is proud to partner with the Gemological Institute of America to offer diversity scholarships for students from underrepresented communities, including BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ professionals, wishing to take on-campus or eLearning courses through GIA Education. Recipients are able to select from a variety of offerings, including GIA’s online Applied Jewelry Professional (AJP®) diploma program and Diamond Essentials and Diamonds and Diamond Grading courses, or its on-campus Graduate Colored Stones diploma program and Jewelry Design certificate course. This year, scholarships were awarded to Gwen Beloti, Nicole Cisneros, Emi Harase, and Tadiwanashe Madzime.
The Gabriel Love Foundation Scholarship has been awarded to Cydney Elliott, a student at GIA. The $5,000 scholarship was established and funded by the Gabriel Love Foundation of Gabriel & Co., the New York-based fine jewelry brand. The WJA scholarship provides funding for students who wish to achieve professional growth within the jewelry industry, and who plan to use their careers in jewelry to improve communities and participate in charitable efforts.
The Cindy Edelstein Scholarship, created to honor the legacy of long-time WJA Board member Cindy Edelstein, has been awarded to Casey Perez. This scholarship is given in memory of Cindy, who was the jewelry industry’s passionate advocate for jewelry designers entering the field. For that reason, the $5,000 scholarship is awarded to emerging fine jewelry designers or artisans and memorializes Edelstein’s tireless pursuit of educating, mentoring, and coaching these entrepreneurs. The recipient can pursue jewelry design, metalsmithing, or business courses, providing they are focused on improving their artistry and/or their designer jewelry business.
WJA Foundation also provides various scholarships to students enrolled in jewelry or metalsmithing programs at accredited colleges, universities, or training schools between August 1, 2023, and July 31, 2024. This year’s Designer Category winner is Julia King (Savannah College of Art and Design), and the Designer/Creator Category winner is Betsy Yates (New Approach School).
Donations to WJA Foundation can be made here.
Direct questions about the Women’s Jewelry Association Foundation to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Learn more at womensjewelryassociation.com.