Craft Apprenticeship Program Grant
Craft Apprenticeship Program Grant header image


Deadline: December 8, 2021
Maximum Award: $4,000.
Required Match: None.
Award Cycle: July 1, 2022 to June 30, 2023


Craft Apprenticeship Program Grant

The Craft Apprenticeship Program is presented in collaboration with the Maine Craft Association. It provides a seven-month customized educational opportunity for apprentices who demonstrate a commitment to further their abilities as specialized craft practitioners. This is done through a significant relationship with a mentor artist. This program does not include photography, painting or drawing. Please contact us if you are unsure if your craft discipline qualifies. (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 provide 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.

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

  • Providing makers with relevant and alternative educational experiences.
  • Promoting and facilitating craft as a viable career path.
  • Fostering deliberate mentoring.
  • Facilitating professional development of emerging makers.
  • Increasing pool of craft makers in the state.
  • Providing makers with alternative means of professional funding.
  • Develop and promote peer learning in the Maine craft community.
  • To promote an alumni cohort to convene, network, and foster further mentoring.

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:

  1. 40% = Quality of the project plan, components, and outcomes
  2. 30% = Artistic strength of the mentor 
  3. 20% = Skill and commitment of the apprentice 
  4. 10% = Overall application quality

All applications must be submitted through the online Application Portal.  Once an application is started, the applicant may make changes up until the deadline. When completed, the applicant must hit the ‘Submit’ button on the final page. This locks the application and makes it ready for review. The application includes an online form and attachments to be uploaded.

Application Questions

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

For Mentor:
  • Describe your current studio practice, including your business structure and where you sell or exhibit your work. (Max: 500 characters.)
  • To the best of your ability, assess the apprentice’s potential and commitment to this craft form. (Max: 500 characters max)
  • How do you and the apprentice know one another, why did you choose this apprentice? (Max: 500 characters)

For Apprentice:

  • Tell us how long you have been working in this craft and any previous instruction (Max: 500 characters)
  • Where are you currently making, how much time are you working on your craft and are you selling or exhibiting work? (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 in particular? (Max: 500 characters)
  • In what ways do you plan to continue working with this craft form or technique in the future? (Max: 500 characters)
For Both Mentor and Apprentice:
  • Where will the teaching take place? (Max: 100 characters.)
  • What type of schedule will you arrange? (Max: 100 characters.)
  • Are there any distance, mobility, communication, technology, space or schedule concerns or barriers that you will need to overcome? (Max: 500 characters.)

Apprenticeship Plan Goals:

CAP requiresone-on-one training from the mentor for 100 hours over seven months. List three goals that will advance the apprentice's practice and can be taught in this amount of time.

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

Apprentice Budget:

The apprentice will receive $1,000 which must be spent during the seven-month apprenticeship to support their 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's funding is to compensate for their time and expertise, (do not submit a budget for these services).

  • Provide an itemized list of 1-10 items with their cost equaling $1,000. (Max: 500 characters.)
Additional Information:
  • Any additional Information the mentor and/or apprentice would like to share. (Max: 1000 characters.)

Incomplete applications will not be eligible for review. Applicants must submit artistic samples for both the mentor artist and apprentice(s). A completed application in the Application Portal must contain:

Online - Fields within the Grants Portal that will need to be completed
  • Complete answers to all narrative prompts. (Required)
  • Resume, bio, or curriculum vitae for the mentor and for the apprentice. (Required)
Uploads - Support materialsArtistic samples uploaded through the Application Portal
  • Five images of the work of the mentor (Required)
  • Five images of the work of the apprentice (Required)
  • Collateral. (Optional) Up to four additional pieces of collateral such as press clippings, letters of recommendation, artist statements, articles, additional images, etc.
Artist-specific application information:
  • ‘DUNS Number’ does not apply to individual artist applicants; just enter “1”
  • If contact information has changed within the past year you will need to fill out a new Vendor Form
Vendor Code – An applicant must have a current Vendor Code to receive award funds.
  • For new applicants – Please read the Vendor Form help information, download a Vendor Form, fill it out, and return it to the Maine Arts Commission by mail, email, or fax
  • For past applicants:If your contact information has changed in the past year, you will need to fill out a new Vendor Form with your updates

Applications are reviewed by a panel of Maine professionals for a first-round elimination. The panel also interviews the finalist pairs with awards given to two or more joint applicants.

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. Please direct questions about agency accessibility and accommodation to Kerstin Gilg, at vog.eniam@glig.nitsreK or 207-287-6719.   

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

Get Started in our Application Portal

Apply for a Grant

Need More Help?
For General Questions:
Director of Grants & Accessibility
Kerstin Gilg: 287-6719
Help by Discipline:

Assistant Director
Julie Horn: 287-2790

Program Officer
Martha Piscuskas: 287-2750

Traditional Arts Specialist
Kathleen Mundell: 236-6741