GIA has announced three recipients of the Beyoncé Knowles-Carter x Lorraine Schwartz GIA Scholarship.
Audriana Osborne, Shelton Bradford, and Kulla Jatani have all won scholarships worth $20,000 each. The scholarships will cover full tuition for the school’s graduate gemologist diploma, fees, equipment, and travel and other expenses for on-campus lab classes.
Beyoncé selected the recipients based on essays they wrote, and on what they intended to achieve with the education they would receive at GIA.
Osborne, who is from Montgomery, Ala., wrote about creative expression and legal advocacy to ensure marginalized groups are protected. Bradford, who hails from Lake Forest, Calif., has a passion for gemstones sparked by their science and symbolism. With his scholarship, he plans to open his own business.
The recipient of the third scholarship, Jatani, is from Seattle and plans to develop her technical skills, with the goal of serving others in her community.
“I was impressed with their passion and the knowledge of gems that so many applicants displayed,” Beyoncé said of the winners in a statement. “I am praying that this is just the beginning of opening more doors to diversity and raw inspiration in the jewelry industry.”
The scholarship is rooted in the belief held by both Schwartz and Beyoncé that education builds opportunity that leads to generational wealth. Schwartz was already in talks with the GIA to create a scholarship when Beyoncé had a birthday and requested that, in lieu of presents, her friends support black-owned businesses in any way possible. The Beyoncé Knowles-Carter x Lorraine Schwartz Scholarship was born.
“It’s an honor to be part of this life-changing moment for these…young professionals—even more so because it’s in Beyoncé’s name, who has been my friend, muse, and the canvas on whom I’ve shown my jewelry for the last 20 years,” said Schwartz in a statement. “Her work for the black community is without limit and her efforts have inspired me and made me extremely proud to be her friend and partner on this initiative. The recipients are so passionate about furthering their education and jump-starting their futures, not only for themselves, but for their communities and for the generations to follow. I look forward to following along as [the recipients] take the industry by storm.”
“Diversity is essential for us to continue to thrive well into the future,” said Susan Jacques, GIA president and CEO. “We are honored to have worked with Beyoncé and Lorraine to create educational opportunities that can transform the course of a life, and for it to benefit three people makes it all that more special. Congratulations to Audriana, Shelton, and Kulla. We are excited to have you join us on this special journey and we welcome you to GIA!”
Top: Audriana Osborne, one of three winners of the Beyoncé Knowles-Carter x Lorraine Schwartz GIA Scholarship (all photos courtesy of GIA)Follow JCK on Instagram: @jckmagazine
Follow JCK on Twitter: @jckmagazine
Follow JCK on Facebook: @jckmagazine