GIA Endowment Fund Money Released for Scholarships

The Gemological Institute of America’s board of governors has released $65,000 from the Institute’s endowment fund to provide scholarships for five on-campus Graduate Gemologist students in 2006.

Funds for the scholarships were generated from the interest earned in GIA’s growing endowment fund. Linda Ellis Harmeling, vice president and chief development officer, said the funds represent the first disbursement in the initial $75 million campaign. To date the fund is valued at $58 million.

The number of annual scholarships awarded from GIA’s endowment fund will vary. The annual application process runs from June 15 through Oct. 15, and winners are announced in January. U.S. citizens, permanent residents, and those with nontemporary U.S. visas are eligible. Applicants must be at least 17 years old, have a high school diploma or GED, and either work in the jewelry industry or plan to enter it after completing their studies. For information, call (760) 603-4001 or e-mail: