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Summer Registration Information--2014

Penland welcomes serious students of all levels of experience--absolute beginners to professionals. We seek a diverse student population representing varied experiences, backgrounds, races, professions, and ages (minimum age 18). Some classes are tailored for beginners and some require prior experience; most welcome a range of skill levels.


Penland accepts students regardless of race, religion, nationality, gender, gender identification, or sexual orientation.


Before submitting your online application, please check our summer open class list to see if the class you are interested still has space. If the class is not listed on this page, this means it has filled, and that you may ask to be added to a waiting list. You may be added to a waiting list for a full class without submitting a deposit, and your application fee will not be processed unless you are enrolled.


If you are applying for a scholarship, the lottery deadline does not apply to you – it is for full-paying students only. Materials for scholarship application are due no later than 5pm on Monday, February 17.



To give a greater number of people a chance to enroll in the most popular classes, applications received by 5:00 pm on February 11 will be placed in a lottery and treated equally. (For example, if a class has 12 spaces and we receive 15 applications by February 11, we will take all 15 names and randomly select 12 of them.) After February 11, applications will be processed on a first-come/first-served basis.

Processing Fee and Deposits

A nonrefundable $50 processing fee is charged when you apply (see note under Waiting Lists regarding classes that have already been filled). You may apply for several classes at once.


A deposit of $250 per class is required to secure a place in each class that you wish to be enrolled in unless the class is currently full. Scholarship applicants pay a processing fee but no deposit at the time of registration.

Your application will be processed provided we have received your registration form, processing fee, and appropriate deposits. If a class is full, you will be placed on a waiting list, and your deposit will be returned. The balance of your fees (including room and board) is due on April 15. If payment is not received by this date, you may lose your space in the class and be charged a cancellation fee. If you register after April 15, full payment is due upon enrollment.
We do not accept registration by phone. Please mail or fax your registration form (registration fax: 828-765-8174) or use our online application form (see links at top of page).

If you apply in January, February, or March, you will be notified of your status by April 1.

Cancellations and Refunds

Penland makes a substantial investment when planning a class, and vacancies can be hard to fill even if there is a waiting list, so we must charge cancellation fees to offset the cost of these vacancies. If you cancel anytime up to 30 days before the beginning of a class, you will receive a full refund minus a $100 cancellation fee and the $50 nonrefundable processing fee. If you cancel less than 30 days before the beginning of the class, there is no refund. This policy also applies to work-study scholarship students. If it is necessary for Penland to cancel a class for any reason, students will be notified and offered another class or a full refund. We cannot be responsible for nonrefundable airline tickets. If you wish to transfer your registration, please call the registrar to inquire.

Waiting Lists

Waiting lists are maintained for all filled classes. Any applicant for a full class will be placed on the waiting list. All applications received by February 11 and not selected in the lottery will be placed on the waiting list in lottery order. After that time, waiting lists are kept in order by the date that applications are received. Applicants will be contacted if space becomes available. A processing fee or deposit is not required for any class that is full. Please check our open class list below; if the class you are interested is not listed, this means it is full and you may apply for a waiting list spot.


Stand-By Program

Residents of certain counties in Western North Carolina and Eastern Tennessee are offered half-price tuition when they take unfilled spaces less than two weeks before the beginning of a one or two week class, or four weeks before the beginning of an eight-week concentration. This offer is also available to all K-12 teachers and current college, university, or community college faculty, regardless of where they live.

Off-Campus Students

Students who live in the area or prefer to find their own lodging are welcome to enroll as off-campus students and may participate in all activities of the Penland session. Off-campus students should select a meal plan when enrolling.


Penland's historic campus is located on terrain that is steep and uneven. We are working to make our campus more accessible and we have several units of housing that conform to the Americans with Disabilities Act. We provide accessible parking for the dining hall, housing, and most studios. Penland will make every effort to provide appropriate housing and program access to people with known disabilities to the degree possible without posing an undue hardship on the organization. People with disabilities are responsible for requesting appropriate accommodations and helping the school assess how best to assist them. Please contact the registrar to discuss housing and access to studios and other facilities. A limited number of golf carts are available for students who have mobility impairments.
Textiles classes are taught in second- and third-floor walk-up studios.

Penland Housing

Penland housing is quite simple. Buildings are not air-conditioned--the climate is moderate and you can count on cool temperatures at night. Furnishing is basic: a bed and a place to put your clothes.


This year, we are pricing our housing in two tiers: standard and economy.

Standard housing includes rooms that are a bit larger and, in some cases, are in buildings that have been recently constructed or renovated. The “dorm” option in regular housing refers to rooms that house four people.

Economy housing includes rooms that are a little smaller, many are in older buildings, and a few are located one-half-mile from the center of campus (let us know if this will present a physical hardship for you). The “dorm” option in economy housing refers to rooms that house up to 15 people.

Housing assignments are made shortly before the session begins.We do our best to match students with the type of housing they request, but this is not always possible, and we cannot honor requests for specific rooms or buildings.


Cost of Materials

Tuition does not cover the cost of materials used for students’ own production (hot glass tuition does cover the cost of the glass in the furnaces). Most classes require that you bring certain materials and tools with you. There may also be a studio fee for supplies used by the group, and some classes may incur a hazardous waste disposal fee. We will make every effort to notify students in advance if we anticipate a studio fee in excess of $50. Look for this information on your materials list. Note: flameworking students pay a $100 deposit and a $10 rental fee on their tool kits; optional tool kits are available in the wood and metals studios for a small rental fee.

Studio Safety

Students should be aware that in many classes they may be working with tools which, if improperly used, can cause injury. A safety tour and information about the proper handling of tools and materials is part of our classes; however, students assume the risk of working with tools and materials provided by the school.

Studio Information

Support Services

The Blue Ridge Regional Hospital is the nearest medical facility; it is in Spruce Pine, a 15-minute drive from Penland. The school can provide information about urgent care providers in the local area. Recovery meetings are held on campus twice weekly and more frequently in Spruce Pine. The nearest pharmacy and laundromat are also a 15-minute drive.

College and Teacher Credits

Undergraduate and graduate credit may be earned at Penland through Western Carolina University. Charges ($125 per undergraduate credit; $150 per graduate credit plus a $50 application fee) are in addition to Penland’s fees and are subject to change. Students must check with their institution to make sure these credits are transferrable. A certificate of course completion is also available. Teachers interested in receiving Public Education Certificate renewal credits for Penland classes should contact their local school board.


Drugs and Alcohol--Alcohol is not permitted in the studios. The legal drinking age in North Carolina is 21. The use of illegal drugs while at Penland is strictly prohibited. We cannot tolerate behavior that jeopardizes your safety or the safety of others.
Personal Property--Penland is not responsible for the security of property belonging to students, instructors, or staff.
Pets--Students are not permitted to have pets with them while at Penland.
Unacceptable Behavior--Penland reserves the right to dismiss any student, without refund, for behavior that is disruptive to the community learning and living environment. Penland may refuse admission to students with a past history of unacceptable behavior.

Arrival and Departure

Penland is located in the Blue Ridge mountains near Spruce Pine, NC, 52 miles north of Asheville. The easiest way to get here is by car, but commercial van service (not affiliated with Penland) to and from the Asheville airport and bus terminal is available at the beginning and end of each session for a fee. Plan to arrive at Penland in time for a 5:00 pm orientation session on Sunday (work-study and studio assistants arrive in time to work on Saturday morning). Sessions end on Friday at noon, except 5th session, which ends on Tuesday, and 7th session, which ends on Saturday (work-study and studio assistants must work on the day after their session).

Please note: many GPS systems give incorrect directions to Penland School. Google Maps shows several locations for Penland School, some of which are incorrect. We recommend you use the directions on this website rather than GPS systems or online mapping services.

Gift Certificates

Gift Certificates are available for classes (covering tuition and/or other fees) or for gallery purchases. Electronic gift certificates can be delivered to your recipients by e-mail within one business day of your order. We can also send a paper certificate if you prefer. (Individuals redeeming gift certificates for the cost of classes must follow normal application and registration procedures including the lottery.)