Press Release: Application Available for the 2020–2021 Arts Professional Learning Institute


Application Available for the 2020 – 2021 Arts Professional Learning Institute from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts and Young Audiences Arts for Learning NJ & Eastern PA

Paid opportunity for professional development and curriculum building for NJ’s teaching artists and school educators

PHOTO CAPTION: Actor and Disability Inclusion Consultant Christine Bruno speaks to the participants of the “United We Discover” event hosted by Young Audiences, February 2020.

PHOTO CAPTION: Actor and Disability Inclusion Consultant Christine Bruno speaks to the participants of the “United We Discover” event hosted by Young Audiences.

Trenton, NJ. November 9, 2020: On November 2, 2020, the Arts Professional Learning Institute (APLI) launched its new website and application for 2020 – 2021.Teaching artists and school educators who work within the state of New Jersey are encouraged to apply for this paid opportunity to receive innovative and inclusive professional learning from leading arts educators throughout the state.

The Arts Professional Learning Institute is a co-sponsored project of the New Jersey State Council on the Arts and Young Audiences Arts for Learning New Jersey and Eastern Pennsylvania. It is generously supported by the Grunin Foundation and Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation. APLI’s mission is to provide professional learning opportunities to New Jersey’s teaching artists, classroom educators, and school administrators. APLI aims to engage the arts educator in inclusive, progressive, arts-based professional learning experiences so that the whole student can be reached, inclusive of race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, and perceived ability.

“The relationship between the teaching artist and the educator is the unique factor within this program,” says Porché Hardy, Program Officer of Arts Education at the New Jersey State Council on the Arts. “This intentional partnership provides space for new ideas and techniques to develop learning plans for arts classrooms that are peer reviewed, student tested, and built on the tenants of equity that can be shared and adapted into school and youth environments. The Council is proud to be a partner in the development of such important and impactful arts education work.”

APLI will present participants with virtual professional learning workshops, workshop debriefs, and entrance into the statewide arts education conference held by the New Jersey Arts Education Collective. In addition, APLI will pair teaching artists and school participants to implement mini residencies in a classroom setting, reaching students with new teaching strategies and collaborative arts experiences.

Featured workshops for the 2020 – 2021 cohort include: English Language Learners and the Arts Classroom, presented by Count Basie Center for the Arts; Creating a Safe Space for LGBTQ+ Voices, presented by Garden State Equality; Arts Equity for Disabled Students, presented by Young Audiences; and Creation as Celebration!, presented by Appel Farm Arts & Music Campus.

One APLI Fellow from its inaugural year wrote: “This experience gave me a better understanding of the kind of teacher I’m aspiring to be. I have more confidence to make bolder decisions in my teaching strategies. I feel like I can step outside of the box and go for it after participating in this program.”

Participants for the 2020 – 2021 cohort will be chosen to represent diverse art forms, experience levels, and geographic reach in the state.

Due to the collaborative nature of the work, fellows will receive a stipend for their participation, which includes attendance at workshops and webinars, participation in evaluations, and commitment to residency work.

“Young Audiences is committed to supporting and building the field of teaching artists and arts educators, so that students in our region have experiences that lift up their assets, engage their imagination and creativity, and contribute to a positive school environment. We are proud to partner with the New Jersey State Council on the Arts on this critical program,” offers Michele Russo, President & CEO of Young Audiences.

For more information on workshops, application guidelines, or to apply for the Arts Professional Learning Institute, please visit APLI at its new website:

To keep up to date on APLI, follow us on Facebook and Twitter (@NJAPLI).

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About the New Jersey State Council on the Arts

The New Jersey State Council on the Arts, created in 1966, is a division of the NJ Department of State. The Council was established to encourage and foster public interest in the arts; enlarge public and private resources devoted to the arts; promote freedom of expression in the arts; and facilitate the inclusion of art in every public building in New Jersey. The Council receives direct appropriations from the State of New Jersey through a dedicated, renewable Hotel/Motel Occupancy fee, as well as competitive grants from the National Endowment for the Arts. To learn more about the Council, please visit

About Young Audiences Arts for Learning New Jersey and Eastern Pennsylvania

Founded in 1973, Young Audiences Arts for Learning NJ & Eastern PA is the premier arts-in-education resource in the region, providing teaching artist-led performances, workshops, residencies, and teacher professional learning programs to schools in all 21 counties of New Jersey and the 7 easternmost counties of Pennsylvania. Young Audiences’ extensive professional artist roster represents all art forms—from dance and theater to music, language and visual arts. Since its founding, the organization has reached over 15 million children in its nearly 50-year history.

A not-for-profit organization, Young Audiences’ mission is to inspire young people and expand their learning through the arts. Students are the center of our work. Our vision is that every child will have rich and meaningful arts experiences as part of their education. YA continually strives to create spaces that are diverse, equitable, and inclusive to all students and is committed to providing students of all identities, backgrounds, and experiences with arts education in which their creativity, cultures, abilities, and identities are validated, included, and nurtured.

YA’s programs are accessible to all socio-economic, ethnic, cultural, and geographic communities, and are designed to strengthen the arts in schools, meet local and state curriculum standards, and enrich cultural life in New Jersey and Pennsylvania communities.

Young Audiences is the first arts education organization designated as a major service organization by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts and, as part of the national network of Young Audiences, Inc., was awarded the National Medal of Arts by President Clinton. Young Audiences programs are made possible in part through a grant from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State and Pennsylvania Council of the Arts. Additional funding comes from foundations, corporations and generous individuals. To learn more, visit To be “social” with us, join us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram and Twitter @YAAFLORG.


Samantha Clarke

APLI Manager


[email protected]