After receiving overwhelming participation for all of the virtual alumni guest sessions, GIA India organised its fourth session with John King, former Chief Quality Officer at GIA, as the guest speaker. King spoke on the topic ‘Struck by Lightning: The Rare World of Coloured Diamonds.’
The session started with a quick introduction of John King by Sriram Natarajan, Managing Director of GIA India. King recently retired after 40 years of dedicated service at GIA. His academic work in fine art included studies in colour theory and colour order systems which supplemented his work in the laboratory.
He has written and lectured extensively on coloured diamonds and laboratory practice, and has graded some of the world’s most famous diamonds, including the Hope Diamond. In this session, alumni members discovered some of the unique coloured diamonds, learnt about application of vision and colour science, determination of an overall hue circle, recent trends in coloured diamonds, and more.
“It was a pleasure to share my presentation with such an enthusiastic audience. If only we could have been in the same place,” said King. “I hope the talk causes everyone to recognise the importance of their GIA learnings for diamond evaluation. Knowing the science of separating natural diamonds from treated or laboratory-grown, as well as understanding the GIA grading system, helps everyone appreciate these amazing, rare gems. I also hope everyone will see coloured diamonds with fresh eyes, that they will wonder at the infinite variety of feelings we get from all the colours and that it will expand your appreciation for them as true works of art.”
“It was a great session with John and I’m sure our alumni enjoyed it thoroughly,” Manoj Singhania, Director – Education, GIA India. “John’s experience and expertise on coloured diamonds is unparalleled and we’re happy to have received an overwhelming response for all our sessions. We remain committed to engaging with GIA’s prestigious alumni network through virtual guest sessions and more.”
“I am thankful to John for taking the valuable time and sharing interesting insights on coloured diamonds,” said Sriram Natarajan. “While a GIA education gives students and working professionals the knowledge required to step into the industry or even take the reins of their family businesses, we at GIA understand the need for continued focus on gemmological research and sharing it with the trade. I’m proud that GIA has an esteemed alumni network that allows for a platform to share knowledge, network for business opportunities, and help grow the industry together.”
One of the participants from the session, Nancy Dhariwal, Founder & CEO, Nancy Diamond’s India, and a GIA Diamonds Graduate said, “The session was very captivating and it was an absolute pleasure to listen to John King. I am enthralled by his knowledge and love towards art and gemmology. Mr. King detailed about the Munsell colour system based on visual distinction, rare coloured diamonds, the final Argyle tender, and various art installations. I am fortunate to have been a part of this session and grateful to GIA India for this wonderful opportunity.”
Another participant Karan Bothra, Director, Whitefire Diamonds India Pvt. Ltd., added, “My earnest appreciation for GIA India for arranging this guest session with John King, which gives us access to a ton of information about coloured diamonds beyond the internet. It is indeed a precious moment for young aspirants like us to get to learn from a great expert like Mr. King. The session was highly informative and talks such as these help us understand and learn about the important historical perspective of our trade. Our industry has incredible historical relevance and, as the future of the trade, we should take an active interest and help achieve many more milestones.”
Prernaa Makhariaa, India’s first jewellery influencer and Founder at Style Prer by Prernaa Makhariaa, shared her experience, “The GIA Alumni India Chapter has always been on the forefront to organise informative sessions for its members. Seeking knowledge is an ongoing process and I feel great that my education has not been just restricted to pursuing a course from GIA. GIA India never fails to keep us abreast with interesting and insightful sessions. There are many facts and information which are not known to us and such sessions help us to enrich our knowledge. I am glad to be a part of the session by John King and grateful to GIA India for this initiative.”
The GIA Alumni Association’s mission is to reach, serve and engage GIA alumni through continuous networking; encourage lifelong relationships, and provide opportunities for continuing education. GIA has more than 135,000 alumni across 65 chapters worldwide. In 2020, GIA India conducted two virtual alumni guest sessions – first with Dr. Vinod Hayagriv, Managing Director and Director, C. Krishniah Chetty (CKC) Group of Jewellers, and then with Dr. Wuyi Wang, GIA Vice President of Research & Development. In 2021, the third virtual alumni guest session was with Manuj Goyal, Managing Director, Pink City India and Co-founder of Indology. All these sessions witnessed enthusiastic alumni participation from all parts of India.
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