UPDATE: Gem-A London temporary closure

 

A letter from the Gem-A CEO

 

Dear Gem-A Community,

All of us here at Gem-A London join me in sending you best wishes. We hope that you are staying well during this unprecedented situation - one that none of us could have predicted.

Access to our central London office has become increasingly difficult for staff due to government travel restrictions and underground closures. The safety and well-being of our staff and students is our number one priority so, from Monday 23 March, all staff in our head office are being asked to work from home. The office and Gem-A Instruments will have to be closed to the public, students and Members for the foreseeable future. 

We would like to assure you that we are doing everything possible to continue to support the next generation of gemmologists currently studying with us around the world, while also complying with the latest government advice. Our online programme continues, and some of our in-house students are being transferred to online study where possible.

Of course, practical lessons cannot be moved online. In light of this, we have decided to postpone our June examinations. They will be moved to a later date so that we can maintain the academic rigour that our students deserve, and the global industry expects. 

At present, our publications are on track to be delivered to Members as scheduled, with the next issue of Gem-A’s Journal of Gemmology being posted next week and of course, it will be available online for Members to access. We will continue to share news on our social media channels, along with sharing informative and educational posts. Should anyone wish to speak to a member of the team, please do so via email. We will be making every effort to continue to work as seamlessly as possible.

Education: education@gem-a.com

Membership: membership@gem-a.com

Gem-A Instruments: instruments@gem-a.com

This really is a time of uncertainty and disquiet not only for the United Kingdom but for the rest of the world too, with the Far East having had to endure it for months now. By staying positive, prioritising the needs of our community, and, of course, following the government’s advice, we can tackle this pandemic one day at a time.

As soon as our London office is able to open again, we will share the good news.

Thank you for your continued support of our great Association and please do stay safe and well. We look forward to meeting again in brighter times.

With kind regards,

Alan Hart
Chief Executive Officer
Gem-A

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Gem-A London to host all upcoming courses online-only until February 2021

 

PRESS RELEASE: June 2020

 

Gem-A, the Gemmological Association of Great Britain, has announced plans to host all its upcoming educational courses in an online-only format until February 2021.

The world’s longest serving provider of gemmological education has taken the decision to temporarily suspend in-house teaching at its London Headquarters in response to the current global health crisis and related social distancing requirements. Its goal is now to continue to offer its globally recognised Gemmology Foundation, Gemmology Diploma and Diamond Diploma courses in a digital environment.

Gem-A CEO Alan Hart comments: “Giving students access to leading gemmological education is our number one priority, which is why we are evolving our educational model to adapt to our shared ‘new normal’. Like all education providers, we are assessing each new piece of information as it unfolds, but we have made this decision now and without delay so we can confidently prepare for the future and continue to offer our world class education.”

Gem-A is now strengthening its online offering, adding further interactive elements to its courses to enhance student engagement. In-keeping with its ethos of thorough theoretical and practical knowledge for all students, Gem-A will continue to require students to attend in-person practical lab classes as part of their training.

These practical classes – hosted across three days or five days – will be carefully organised with the Association’s existing network of Gem-A Approved Practical Providers (GAPPs) to accommodate social distancing and reduce group numbers. Extra lab classes will be scheduled for the remainder of 2020 and into 2021 in a bid to provide greater opportunities for online-only students to complete their studies.

Students will be encouraged to attend a lab class close to them, rather than travelling to the Gem-A Head Office in London unnecessarily. Those from across the UK, European Union and United States will also have access to the Gem-A Stone Library – a service that allows students to borrow gemstone sets for practical, hands-on learning in the comfort of their own homes.

Looking ahead, Gem-A is reviewing its existing examination procedures and policies and will update students as more detailed information becomes available.

Hart continues: “While none of us could have predicted this unusual and worrying situation, we are doing what we can to minimise the disruption to our students and help more people find their feet as gemmologists. This shift towards online learning, now for all our courses, will no doubt lead to exciting conversations about the future of Gem-A education, paving the way for a new landscape of online distance learning that is just as rigorous and worthwhile as our in-person education.”

To find out more about online study with Gem-A, please visit: gem- a.com/education/study-options/online

A complete list of Gem-A Approved Practical Providers can be found here:gem-a.com/education/study-options/practical-provider

ENDS

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