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18 EARLY SPRING 2018 // STEMJOBS.COM JEWELRY // JENNIFER HWANG HUNTING FOR TREASURE When you look at a beautiful piece of jewelry, the origin and quality of the stones it contains are probably not the first thing on your mind. While most of us are thinking about whether it will go with a particular outfit or wondering if we can afford it, Jennifer Hwang is mentally assessing and grading the stones, focused on their color, clarity, carat weight, and cut. Fascinated by the uniqueness of gemstones, Jennifer decided jewelry wasn't just a hobby, but also a career opportunity. "I discovered the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) after I landed my first job with a cultured pearl company that later integrated into a colored stone and fine jewelry business. During my two years with the company, I realized my gemstones knowledge was so limited that I could not really help my customers, so I decided to quit my job to study at GIA," explains Jennifer. Unique Stones, Unique Career BY ELLEN EGLEY

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