Craft Apprenticeship Program Grant
Craft Apprenticeship Program Grant header image


Deadline: December 8, 2022
Maximum Award: $4,000.
Required Match: None.
Award Cycle: July 1, 2023 to June 30, 2024


Craft Apprenticeship Program Grant

The Maine and New Hampshire Craft Apprenticeship Program (CAP) is presented through a partnership of the Maine Arts Commission, Maine Craft Association, and the League of NH Craftsmen. CAP supports growth and resiliency in the craft sector by offering new skills, tools and management habits that help with the changing desires of craft consumers. It is seven-month customized education for artists who not only have a deep commitment to better their work but are also willing to develop a significant relationship with a Mentor Artist. This is not a "traditional" apprenticeship where inventory is produced for the Mentor but instead focuses on accomplishing the apprentice's desired professional goals. Pairs apply jointly with agreed goals, a plan for achievement, and a proposed budget for the Apprentice’s stipend. Grant awards are $3,000 for the Mentor Artist for their time and expertise and Apprentices get $1,000 for supplies and tools specific to this apprenticeship. No matching funds are required. (FMI: Applications are due by 5:00 p.m. on the day of the deadline.

Grant awards for the Craft Apprenticeship Program are as follows:

  • $3,000 for the mentor for their time and expertise.
  • $1,000 for the apprentice to use for supplies and tools needed specific to this apprenticeship.

The Maine Craft Apprentice Program addresses the need in Maine for developing sustainability and resiliency in the craft sector by allowing craft artists to acquire new skills, tools and management habits that help them adapt to the changing environment of craft consumers. Applicants apply jointly, providing clear, agreed upon goals, a basic plan for how goals will be achieved, and a proposed budget for the apprentice’s honorarium. Both mentor and apprentice must also submit resumes and images of current work.

A majority of the apprentice training happens at the mentor's studio. Occasionally a visit to another studio or event of relevance is necessary to the apprenticeship goals. Although MaineCAP provides a distinct structure for implementation, the apprenticeship also allows for adaptations as the pair sees fit to maximize the experience for each. MaineCAP requires that the pair submit interim and final reports. To close the program, all artists participate in an exhibition at a highly attended venue as part of the Maine Craft Weekend in early October.

To continue with these connections, current program participants and alumni convene annually during the exhibition to discuss outcomes of the program, as well as develop networking and foster further mentoring.

Have general questions about the Grant/Application Process? Access the Grants FAQ

  • Providing makers with relevant and alternative educational experiences.
  • Promoting craft as a viable career path.
  • Fostering deliberate mentoring.
  • Supplying paying jobs to artists.
  • Facilitating professional development of emerging makers.
  • Increasing the pool of craft makers in the state.
  • Providing makers with alternative professional funding.
    • Extending and endorsing peer learning in the craft community.

    Applicants are eligible to apply if they meet the following criteria at the time of application:

    • Mentor and apprentice have both resided full-time in Maine for at least one year immediately prior to the application deadline.
    • Mentor and apprentice will both reside full-time in Maine throughout the apprenticeship.
    • Mentor and apprentice demonstrate competency in an eligible craft art form.
    • Mentor and apprentice are at least 18 years of age or older by the application deadline.
    Ineligible Expenses

    Grant awards may not be used to fund lodging, rent, existing overhead, or food costs. Grant awards may not be re-granted nor used to cover the costs of brick-and-mortar projects.

    Grant applications are reviewed on a competitive basis using the following criteria: 

    • Significance of the goals discussed. (40%)
    • Level of artistic design and technical abilities of the mentor. (30%) 
    • Skill and commitment of the apprentice. (25%)
    • Clarity of the application. (5%)

    These are the application questions to be completed in the GMS.  

    Application Questions

    (All character counts include spaces. 2,550 characters/page)


    • Describe your studio practice including where you sell or exhibit your work. (Max: 500 characters)  
    • How do you know one another? (Max: 500 characters)
    • To the best of your ability, assess the Apprentice’s potential and commitment. (Max: 500 characters)  


    • Tell us how long you've been working in this craft and if you've had any previous instruction. (Max: 500 characters)  
    • Where are you currently making and how much time are you able to dedicate to it? (Max: 500 characters)
    • What do you hope to accomplish with this apprenticeship experience? (Max: 500 characters)
    • Why do you want to work with this Mentor? (Max: 500 characters)  
    • How will you continue working with this craft in the future? (Max: 500 characters)  


    • Where will the teaching take place and what will your schedule look like? (Max: 500 characters)  
    • Are there any distance, mobility, communication, technology, space, or schedule barriers of concern? How will you manage or how may we assist in helping with this? (Max: 300 characters)  


    CAP requires one-on-one training for 100 hours over seven months. List three goals that will advance the Apprentice's practice that can be taught in the 100 hours required.

    • Goal 1: Please give a brief description of the goal and provide estimated hours to accomplish it. (Max: 500 characters)  
    • Goal 2: Please give a brief description of the goal and provide estimated hours to accomplish it. (Max: 500 characters)
    • Goal 3: Please give a brief description of the goal and provide estimated hours to accomplish it. (Max: 500 characters) 


    The Apprentice will receive $1,000 which must be spent during the apprenticeship and must directly relate to the goals and/or future studio practice. Items may include materials, equipment, books, tools, studio specific furnishings, etc. All purchased items become the property of the Apprentice. Funds may not be used for rent or ongoing existing overhead costs. Note: The Mentor Artist's funding is to compensate for their time and expertise, (do not submit a budget for these services). 

    • Provide a list of 1-10 items with their cost equaling $1,000. (Max: 500 characters)  


    • Any additional information you would like to share. (Max: 500 characters)

    Applications are reviewed by a panel of Maine and New Hampshire professionals for a first-round elimination using scored criteria. The panel then interviews the finalist pairs together to decide on the 2023 program participants.


    2023 Maine Craft Apprenticeship Program Timeline:

    12/08/2022-   Application deadline.

    12/10 – 12/31/2022-   Jurors review all applications.

    1/4/2023 - Notifications are sent to all applicants. Finalists are contacted to schedule interviews for January 18th (attendance required for consideration).

    1/18/2023- Finalist's in-person interviews (via Zoom).

    1/21/2023- Finalists contacted with results in preparation for public announcement.

    1/31/2023- CAP 2023 participants are publicly announced.

    3/1/2023- Apprenticeships begin.

    October 2023- Public exhibition opening in a Maine venue concurring with the 2023 participants and alumni gathering event. (date/location TBA).


    NOTE: The program requires the pair to submit interim and final reports.

    The delivery of funds may take up to six months from the time of award notification. This means that grant awards may be used to reimburse costs which have been incurred for the project after the grant has been approved but prior to funds being disbursed, as long as it takes place within the award cycle.   

    All applicants are notified of their award status (approved or declined) via email. Successful applicants also receive emails with documents and instructions on award acceptance. Awardees are listed on the Maine Arts Commission website. 


    Ask for Help

    The staff at the Maine Arts Commission are ready to help as you prepare your application and navigate the Application Portal. We especially encourage first-time applicants and those new to grant writing to contact us for assistance. For more information, visit our staff directory


    Grant information can be made available in large print format or other languages by request. All Maine Arts Commission programs are accessible to people with disabilities.   All programs funded by the Maine Arts Commission must also be accessible.  To learn more, the NEA offers an accessibility self-assessment checklist.  

    Craft Apprenticeship Staff Contact: 
    Julie Horn  207 287-2790
    Assistant Director, Visual Arts Director

    Need More Help?

    For General Questions:
    207- 287-2724

    More Specific Help:

    Grants and Website Manager
    Eli Cabañas: 287-6746

    Assistant Director
    Julie Horn: 287-2790

    Regional Development Director
    Sheila Jans: 287-2750

    Program Director
    Khristina Kurasz: 287-2724

    Program Director
    Danielle Moriarty: 287-6746

    Program Director

    Martha Piscuskas: 287-2750

    Traditional Arts Specialist
    Kathleen Mundell: 236-6741