Grants for Apprenticeships

The 2021 Application cycle is closed. We will announce the 2022 application date in Spring 2022. 

Grant Program Mission

Established in 2019 and funded by an anonymous donor, Studio Potter’s Grants for Apprenticeships Program supports emerging artists who want to become full-time studio potters and mentor-potters who wish to take on apprentices. This grant program honors the mission of Studio Potter and the legacy of its founder, Gerry Williams, by fostering individual careers in studio pottery, contributing to the life and future of ceramics, ensuring the continuity of a centuries-old tradition in non-academic education.

In this year of momentous events, Studio Potter strongly reaffirms its commitment to equality, diversity, and inclusiveness. The Grants for Apprenticeships Program is committed to supporting the development of BIPOC artists and increasing their presence in studio pottery. 

Studio Apprenticeship Defined

Studio-based apprenticeship is a form of person-to-person training that places work above theory and emphasizes intimacy and immersion. In the West, people commonly associate the history of apprenticeship with craft and trade practices in Europe during the Middle Ages, but traditions of lineage-learning have endured for centuries around the world. Apprenticeship continues today as a means of passing down knowledge from generation to generation and as a way for aspiring artisans to build professional communities and prepare for careers as studio artists.

Why Apprenticeships?

Pedagogy in craft disciplines has changed dramatically in the last century because of technological advances and the rise of a modern education industry. In this context, apprenticeship offers an alternative to academic educational structures through one-on-one relationships in an established studio. Apprentices learn by participating in the daily lives of their mentor, learning their skills, and being exposed to their values. Apprenticeships contribute to the preservation of cultural heritage and the professional advancement of studio potters.

Application Basics

The Grants for Apprenticeships Program offers annual grants of up to $10,000 to support apprenticeships in studio pottery. Arrangements for the apprenticeship should be in place at the time of application and apprentices and their mentor-potters apply jointly in one application. Both parties must be legal residents of the United States, and eighteen years or older. Apprentices cannot be enrolled in any institution of higher learning during their proposed apprenticeship period. The apprenticeship must occur in the United States.

Studio Potter celebrates equality, diversity, and inclusiveness. Applicants from all races, genders, identities, ethnicities, and religions are encouraged to apply.

For more information about application requirements email

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

  • The Grants for Apprenticeships program offers one grant of up to $10,000 per application
  • Applications are submitted by the mentor/apprentice team jointly
  • Grant monies can be used to help meet the legitimate needs of the mentor and/or apprentice in carrying out the apprenticeship. Expenses such as moving costs, wages, housing, and capital improvements are eligible for funding.
  • You must have a mentor or apprentice as a partner at the time of application.  
  • Studio Potter cannot currently assist in locating a potential mentor or apprentice. Please check for a list of potters who regularly host apprentices
  • Studio Potter cares deeply about people and apprenticeship, applications that consider the liabilities, responsibilities, necessities, and possibilities of apprenticeship will be favored

More Background

The Grants for Apprenticeships Program is inspired, in part, by the dedication of Studio Potter’s founder, Gerry Williams, to supporting mentorship and hands-on learning throughout his life. Indeed, the very first issue of Studio Potter, published in 1972, featured content related to apprenticeships and included ads for apprentices and apprenticeships. In the nearly five decades of issues since then, Studio Potter has published numerous articles on apprenticeship, and, in 1981, it published the book Apprenticeship in Craft, edited by Williams. This book, a testament to Williams’s passion and advocacy, is available as a free download here.

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2019 Recipients

Watch the DISCUSSION with our 2019 GAP recipients.