Yesterday I attended the launch ceremony of the new fiber arts program at the Greenville Fine Arts Center. It's an historic initiative: the first-in-the-nation high school program focusing on the fiber arts. The two-year curriculum, designed with help from professors at N.C. State University, will lead to college credit or as a portal to design jobs in the textile industry. The program is funded by multiple Upstate South Carolina companies, and the Greenville County Schools agreed to fund the salary for a teacher and paid for a studio renovation.
At the festivities I spoke briefly with April Dauscha, the new fiber arts teacher. She indicated that weaving instruction doesn't start until the second year of the program. The twelve new textile students will arrive next week and begin their studies in knitting, dyeing, spinning, surface design, embroidery, and more.