Intuit Helps to Shape the Clay School’s Future

When Kirsten Bassion received a master’s degree in ceramics from the School for American Crafts at Rochester Institute of Technology in 2004, she knew she wanted to give back to her community through education. Two years later, with friend and fellow potter Doreen Mastandrea, Bassion opened a small studio in Lynn, Mass., that would later become the Clay School.

“We started out really small,” Bassion says of the business, which is located 30 minutes north of Boston. “Now we have five classes of adult students. We teach inner-city kids. We have workshops and teach kids all summer. We basically run what we consider a small, professional college program that is very much associated with the community.”

Since its launch, the Clay School has received widespread praise for the quality of instruction that students receive. Bassion and three other teachers — all accomplished artists — offer courses.

“[My colleagues] have tons of experience,” Bassion boasts. “We’re all in different museums and galleries nationwide. The quality of the teaching is really good, which means the students who come in get so much. They are getting a college education in ceramics.”

The Clay School’s open studio policy and flexible hours are designed to support aspiring and established artists alike, she says.

“If you’re a teacher and can only get here at 5 a.m., then you are welcome,” Bassion explains. “So, it’s like a very self-directed graduate studio setup. But because of that, we put in a lot of work. Between myself and my one tech, we are there every other day loading two kilns. And those are the only two kilns we have. We are at capacity. The only way we’re going to be able to grow is if we get another kiln.”

Bassion recently entered Intuit’s Small Business Growing Strong campaign in the hopes of getting funding for a third kiln. “We have outgrown our two electric kilns and are in desperate need of a new one,” she noted in her wish entry.

This week, she received the call she had been hoping for: Intuit will grant the Clay School’s wish for a new kiln.

“This is so incredible!” Bassion says. “This means we will be able to offer more classes to the community and get more work out. It’s going to take the pressure off all of the professional artists in the studio and the teachers.”

Intuit’s Small Business Growing Strong campaign is announcing one winner a day through May 24, 2013. Check out the list of current winners and find out whether we’ve granted your wish!

About Michael Essany

Michael Essany is a former E! Entertainment Television host and nationally published author who was recognized by A&E Biography in 2005 as "One of America's Most Remarkable People." Michael currently serves as Vice President of Indiana Grain Company, LLC.
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27 comments
seo4
seo4

oh yeah, this very great and thankful!!!!!!!!!!!

Donnie Leger
Donnie Leger

Oh yeah, my wish is that I never allowed myself to leave the square.

Donnie Leger
Donnie Leger

Much like when I went into my account to pay my employees I was broke because you decided to hold funds. And your answer as to why was......you might get more chargebacks. Really fortune tellers are we? So good luck pulling anything else out of my account without authorization.

Donnie Leger
Donnie Leger

I have been a customer for over a year. Once I started adhering to my policies in which intuit assisted in creating customers disputed charges for not showing up or not calling to cancel. Of the 21 phone calls I've made to support none were under 1and a half hour long. After I was on hold for 30 minutes. Once I did get through to support the information changed from agent to agent. My billing was changed without my knowledge or concent. I adopted policies and posted them on my website at the direction of your agents only to have them disregarded by your staff. I have lost every dispute. Finally intuit decided to hold funds from me in turn ceasing our ability to operate. This in turn results in more refunds. It is my mission to inform ANYONE who considers using your product that you are not an advocate for your customers you are a hinderance. I have initiated my BBB complaint. And this is my first step in my media campaign. I also have contacted my local news station who plan to follow up with your coorperate offices. I suggest you do your homework and insure that you have not violated any of my rights or any PCI violations have occured. Your bullying and lack of professionalism leaves a lot to be desired. An x customer

Ginger Bellerose
Ginger Bellerose

So happy for you! Will be in Chelsea in two weeks, maybe stop by and say hello!!!

Pam Schamberger
Pam Schamberger

congrat's from Pit Road Liquor!! enjoy your new Kiln!

Debbie Goodrich
Debbie Goodrich

Great wish to grant! We do not have enough art in the lives of children. Public educational funding is slashed big time and children need to the arts for their expression and creative understanding of the world. Congratulations, Clay School!

Jacque Zirtzman
Jacque Zirtzman

Congratulations! from Lifting Others Visions Effectively L.O.V.E.

Kim Zoe Cook-Fallon
Kim Zoe Cook-Fallon

Cook's Spices loves this and supports the arts fully..including the culinary arts!

Anna Mae English
Anna Mae English

Awesome Thanks Intuit! I love pottery! This ones for the kids! :)

WristfulThinking Wristbands
WristfulThinking Wristbands

Congratulations, Clay School from Keene Bean Designs! I used to do ceramics when I was younger. It is so therapeutic and beautiful! Way to go!