WJA Awards $22,000 in 2005 Student Scholarships

The Women’s Jewelry Association has awarded $22,000 in student scholarships to 12 jewelry students in 2005. The annual awards are based on slides of three finished pieces submitted by each student, who must be enrolled in a jewelry or watch design study program in the United States. Additionally, two references were required from either teachers or gallery/store owners who are familiar with the student and her work.

WJA’s top student scholarship, the June Herman Scholarship, was awarded to Gail Ralston in the sum of $5,000. Ralston, who graduated magna cum laude from Southwest Missouri State University in 2002, is working on her MFA in metalsmithing and jewelry design at the University of Kansas in Lawrence.

Winners of $3,000 scholarships are Tara Dominguez Magboo and Hye Jung Sin. Magboo is pursuing graduate studies in jewelry and metalsmithing at San Diego State University. Sin is a first-year graduate at the Rochester Institute of Technology, New York, studying metalsmithing.

A $2,500 and a $1,500 scholarship were awarded to Michelle Ritter and Ayuko Izumi, respectively, both of San Diego State University. Seven $1,000 scholarships were awarded to Tricia Lachowiec, University of Massachusetts in Dartmouth; Anjuli Subramanian, Academy of Art University, San Francisco; Sunshine Holk Vekas and Gabriela Gutierrez, both of San Diego State; Tzu-Ju Chen, Cranbrook Academy of Art, Bloomfield Hills, Mich.; Indre Karpaviciute, Cleveland Institute of Arts; and Sherri Strandberg, Revere Academy of Jewelry Arts, San Francisco.

Scholarship funds were raised from the proceeds of WJA’s Silent Auction held during its annual Awards for Excellence celebration in July 2004, as well as from the generous contributions of companies and individuals who support WJA’s mission: the June Herman Fund; David B. Rosenberg Scholarship Fund; Gumuchian Fils Ltd. Fund; Helene Fortunoff Fund; Kaiser-Time Jewelry Fund; M. Markman-Suberi Bros. Fund; Phyllis & Ira Bergman Fund; Samuel Aaron Co. Scholarship Fund; and Billie Sutter Fund.

The Scholarship committee is also responsible for the WJA Member Grants, a program offered by WJA to encourage and assist members with continuing education.

The next WJA student scholarship applications will become available in spring 2006. For information, call (973) 575-7190 or visit www.womensjewelry.org.