Jeweler-gemologist Hanna Cook-Wallace came naturally to her profession. "I was one of those kids who hung out at the local rock shop after school," she recalls. "I call it the 'Magpie factor'--the color and sparkle of gems and minerals has always fascinated me."

Cook-Wallace's interest led naturally to formal gemological training at home and abroad. In addition to study through the Gemological Institute of America, she is a graduate of the Educational Gemstone Centre Hattgenstein in Germany, with a certificate in practical and advanced gemology.

Over the years Cook-Wallace has collected a comprehensive library on the subject of gems and jewelry as well as a fine collection of gem and mineral specimans, many of which illustrate the Gems and Precious stones course. Studio Jewelers, the Madison, WI custom jewelry store she founded in 1981, has a fully equiped gemological laboratory--a rare commitment to gemological standards in today's marketplace.

Education is important to this gemologist. "Most people are completely unaware of the gemological properties and practical considerations in what they are buying," she says. "They have no basis for making judgements about quality and value, and more often than not are given inadvertant or purposeful misinformation by the salesclerk."

Up to now, the average person hasn't really had free access to knowledge about gems and jewelry, she notes, which is one reason she is pleased to consult with the UW-Madison geology department's web course. "I've done educational presentations for schools and other groups, a few dozen people at a time. The potential for reaching such a large audience is very exciting."

Cook-Wallace's shop, Studio Jewelers, naturally features a large inventory of unmounted pearls, colored gems and diamonds, as well as original jewelry by more than a dozen top artists from all over America. "As you might expect, the jewelry here is very different from the average mall store", she says. A person coming here will find lots of unusual gems and wonderful metals techniques--really fabulous, fun pieces."

Inquiries to Gemologist Hanna Cook-Wallace may be directed to her c/o Studio Jewelers, 1306 Regent Street, Madison, WI 53715. Phone: (608) 257-2627 email: 103535.2012@CompuServe.COM