Sisters Laura Mae and Amanda Jean, both GIA GGs, are cofounders of Maejean Vintage in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. As young children, they loved exploring their grandparents’ 300-year-old house packed with antique treasures. With a background in education (Laura) and business management (Amanda), they started their business in vintage jewelry when they won a 40-pound tub of jewelry at auction. The tub contained a surprising amount of historical and valuable heirlooms. It was only natural that they share their findings with the world by selling them! Soon after they founded their startup, they heard of GIA, described to them as the “Harvard” of gem schools. Initially, Laura, who received a scholarship, wanted to take the colored stone course, and Amanda wanted to take the diamond course, but in their enthusiasm, they both completed the entire Graduate Gemologist program. Their newly acquired skill at using the loupe, refractometer and GIA Gem Identification Lab Manual allowed them to acquire more valuable and rarer gems, growing their online business rapidly. They now have a team of four female staff and offer GIA’s AJP program to all their full-time employees. Together, they save historical pieces of jewelry from being melted and sell their salvaged heirlooms all over the world.