In her early 20s, Melizza Jimenez is coming out of her shell. She masters the art of multitasking as a university student, entrepreneur, actress, and singer. The fresh-faced multihyphenate excitedly shared that she’s back in Brisbane, Australia, and now in her third year at Queensland University of Technology.
Melizza is taking a double degree in International Business and Communication (major in Digital Media). She juggles school, business, and extracurricular work as her university’s social media ambassador.
“At QUT, I work as a social media ambassador. I create content for the university. Other than that, I have been studying and working. I’ve been working very, very hard on expanding Jaune Pearls here in Australia and finding its market,” Melizza shared.
Jaune Pearls, the family’s pearl business which spans more than two decades now was named after her. Jaune, Melizza’s second name, turned into the Tanpocos’ luxury business brand. Jaune also means yellow in French.
Melizza shared that her ongoing double degree program equips her to do her part in the family business. She is currently taking on the task of expanding Jaune Pearls’ reach and elevating its marketing strategies. Her older sister, actress Maika Rivera, also takes part by dabbling in public relations and marketing the family brand abroad in key cities like New York and Los Angeles in the US.
Melizza’s pearl credentials are solid. This is backed by her years of exposure and training, and a six-month online course and earned her pearl diploma from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) and went to New York City to do hands-on work in a laboratory. The same diploma was earned by her mom in 2015.
Melizza’s mom is Jenni Tanpoco, also known as the Philippines’ “Queen of Pearls.” The mother-and-daughter team took a 10-day trip to Tahiti last year and trained under Emperor of Tahitian Pearls, Robert Wan.
During the ten days, Melizza worked closely with Robert and she is grateful to have had the chance to ask him questions.
“My training was very intimate and focused. We would have dinners and I immersed myself in our conversations. I asked questions and he gave me industry insights,” Melizza said, obviously thrilled. She continued, “I got to interview him. That was very insightful. I am both humbled and honored. Watch out for it on my Youtube channel.”
What makes Melizza’s journey sweet is her warm working relationship with her parents. Her mom and dad, Jenni and Mark, have always been supportive of their daughters and are noticeably present in their career milestones.
“My parents are the best parents in the world! I can’t ask for better parents. They’re just very supportive!,” Melizza raved.
She attributed her success-in-progress to her parents who lovingly pushed her to do what she is doing now. Melizza is focused on Jaune Pearls’ digitization, bringing in a new economy, updating trends, and maintaining sustainability.
“My favorite thing about pearls is their uniqueness, the rare manifestation of the product, and the collaboration between mankind and the environment, especially the ocean,” Melizza shared when asked about what drew her to pearls.
“As for my favorite piece of pearl jewelry, it is the strand that my mother made for me. It has sentimental value and it’s very beautiful because it’s pastel Tahitian pearl strand,” she shared with passion.
“If there’s one thing I wish more people knew about pearls, it would be the beautiful harvesting process,” Melizza said, sounding perfectly as the country’s “Pearl Princess.”