About the Craft Program

A young man volunteers to add texture to a pot during this demonstration at Miles Intermediate School in Atlanta, GA. He uses a pottery stick to press into the clay as Jackson presses the pedal and slowly spins the pot. A pattern emerges!

The BC Craft Education and Outreach Program provides a unique experience to schools and communities. It gives people the chance to learn, often hands-on, about traditional Appalachian crafts. The program caters to people interested in the traditional craft mediums of:

  • Broom Making
  • Ceramics
  • Weaving
  • Wood Work
  • Metals

Students from our studio crafts program serve as the primary teachers of their craft. The student craftsmen travel to underserved and rural communities to promote and preserve the traditions of the Appalachian region. They also take part in regional arts activities such as art festivals.

The BC Craft Education and Outreach mission is to inspire a generation to be creative through exposure to traditional media and exploration of their connection to the Appalachian tradition of MAKING. The student craftsmen both demonstrate and speak on a variety of topics including:

  • Culture
  • Craftsmanship
  • Traditional arts
  • Art theory
  • The work of Berea College

British poet, critic, and art historian Herbert Read once said, “The purpose of art education is not to make more art and better artists; instead, it is to make better people and better communities.”

BC Craft Education & Outreach Program Objectives

Overall Outcome: The Crafts Education Outreach Program will continue to serve as a leader in arts education programming in traditional and contemporary crafts through high-quality workshops and innovative programming in Berea, throughout the Appalachian region, and beyond.

Objective 1: Support under-served schools and communities through education in crafts disciplines and the Appalachian tradition of making.

a. Provide travel scholarships for at least six under-served K-8 schools to visit campus and attend workshops at the Crafts Education Center each year.

b. Provide curriculum resources for teachers and others on the Outreach Program’s website.

c. Offer at least six crafts workshops or demonstrations each year for established on and off-campus partners through events at the Crafts Education Center, local and regional craft fairs, and other appropriate events, as time and capacity allow.

d. Publish the workshop schedule on the Outreach Program’s website each term.

Objective 2: Student demonstrators will develop skills in craftsmanship, presentation techniques, workshop facilitation, and visitor engagement.

a. Develop a training program to refine the demonstration team’s presentation and communication techniques prior to the start of the Fall term.

b. Educate the demonstrators to the crafts tradition of Berea College and Appalachian culture.

c. Train the demonstrators to assist and lead crafts workshops, focusing on process, materials, technique, and curriculum materials.

d. Train the students on the Point of Sales system in the Visitor Center and Shoppe.

e. Coordinate and lead an educational Spring Break trip each year.