Press Release

Nearly 900 Attend GIA’s Jewelry Career Fair and Open House

Moderator and four panelist sit smiling as they answer audience questions

The opening panel, “Job Success in Today’s Market,” L to R: Susan M. Jacques, GIA president and CEO; Douglas Hucker, chief executive officer of AGTA; Ashwin Bhindi, manager of Bhindi Jewelers; Jennifer Susan Pusenkoff, designer/president/CEO of Jennifer Pusenkoff Design, Inc.; Jordan Tabach-Bank, CEO and owner of The Loan Companies. Photo by Kevin Schumacher/GIA.

Hundreds connected with recruiters and received one-on-one coaching

CARLSBAD, Calif. – October 24, 2017 – GIA’s (Gemological Institute of America) Jewelry Career Fair and Open House drew nearly 900 gem and jewelry professionals, job seekers and members of the local community to the event’s 26th anniversary on October 13, 2017. This annual event at GIA’s Carlsbad World Headquarters was bustling with inspiring panel discussions, classroom demonstrations, one-on-one coaching, recruiting and the opening of a new exhibit of gemstone jewelry from India. Job seekers were able to connect with 36 companies looking to fill hundreds of jobs, as well as talk one-on-one with 26 coaches from all facets of the industry.
The event kicked off with the opening panel “Job Success in Today’s Market,” moderated by GIA president and CEO, Susan M. Jacques. “You have to ask yourself, not what you know about colored gemstones or diamonds if that’s your passion – but what don’t you know and how can you find that out,” said Douglas K. Hucker, chief executive officer of AGTA. “The beauty of GIA is that it gives you the confidence, tools and knowledge… it is your job now to figure out how to use those tools…,” said Ashwin Bhindi, manager of Bhindi Jewelers as he spoke about the retailer experience and social media. “There are always new chances, as long as we see where the changes are going and adapt…,” added Jennifer Susan Pusenkoff designer/president/CEO of Jennifer Pusenkoff Design, Inc. Jordan Tabach-Bank, CEO and owner of the Loan Companies, who has hired ten GIA graduates from past Jewelry Career Fairs, shared his advice; “Concentrate not only on the money you can make a company but also the money you can save a company.”

One-on-one coaching with 26 industry experts at the 2017 Carlsbad Jewelry Career Fair. Photo by Kevin Schumacher/GIA.

Well-known global brands and local companies such as Tiffany & Co., Stuller, JTV, Leo Hamel, The RealReal and many more came from across the U.S and from as far away as Germany for the opportunity to connect with hundreds of job seekers.

The “Creative Careers” panel was moderated by Victoria Gomelsky, editor-in-chief of JCK magazine and The industry experts on the panel included Arun Bohra, designer and CEO of Arunashi; Katey Brunini, owner/designer of K. Brunini Jewels; Lindsay Jane, jeweler designer and owner of Lindsay Jane Designs; Anil Maloo, president of Baggins Inc.; Maryanna Nagle, valuation manager of the RealReal; and Shelly Sergent, curator for Somewhere In The Rainbow Collection. This lively panel discussion covered many topics. Maryanna Nagle closed out the panel with, “Run towards your weakness… Take the time to learn it, that’s how you advance in any career.”

Brenda Harwick, manager of on-campus and lab gemology, leads open house guests in classroom demonstration during GIA’s Jewelry Career Fair and Open House in Carlsbad. Photo by Emily Lane/GIA

Open house guests visited “Centuries of Opulence, Jewels of India,” GIA’s newest exhibit that opened in conjunction with the Jewelry Career Fair and Open House. Featuring 50 historical jewelry pieces and objects from 17th to 20th century India, the exhibit will be on display until March 1, 2018. For more information and to see a full list of the many other exhibits on display visit

The success of GIA’s Jewelry Career Fair is due to the generous participation of the recruiters, guidance of the career coaches, and the expertise of the panelists. The next Jewelry Career Fair will take place in New York. For more information, visit or email Follow @GIANews #JewelryJobs for updates.

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