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The Institute of American Indian Arts Announces the Chihuly Scholarship

Apr 6, 2023

Leslie and Dale Chihuly

Leslie and Dale Chihuly

The Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) is pleased to announce the Chihuly Scholarship, underwritten by the Dale and Leslie Chihuly Foundation in memory of IAIA alum, glass artist Tony Jojola (Isleta Pueblo) ’76. The generous four-year full-ride scholarship will cover tuition, room and board, programmatic expenses, and experiential learning opportunities for an incoming Indigenous student within any full-time undergraduate major at IAIA who demonstrates exceptional talent and innovation.

“I taught at IAIA in its early years and have remained an advocate for the school and its rich programming ever since,” says artist Dale Chihuly. “Leslie and I want this scholarship to enable an emerging artist to focus entirely on the development of their practice, and we are thrilled to play a role in their creative journey.”

“The scholarship funded by the Dale and Leslie Chihuly Foundation will assist IAIA in recruiting talented, creative, and innovative students,” emphasizes Dr. Robert Martin (Cherokee Nation). While IAIA’s scholarships have typically focused on retainment, the Chihuly Scholarship will enhance IAIA’s competitive edge in attracting promising students to apply to the college.

“Dale and I are committed to supporting artists in their practice and to ensuring access to quality art programs for all,” says Leslie Jackson Chihuly, co-founder of the Dale and Leslie Chihuly Foundation. “We are so proud to fund the new Chihuly Scholarship, which is the result of a long-standing relationship with IAIA and our shared mission to encourage and provide opportunities for art students.”

“IAIA deeply appreciates the support that the Dale and Leslie Chihuly Foundation is providing to aspiring Native students at IAIA to advance their education,” IAIA Trustee JoAnn Balzer states. “Dale founded IAIA’s first glass arts program in 1974, supported the college in the years since then, and has now established a four-year Chihuly Scholarship through their foundation. It will be a great honor and motivator for the IAIA student who receives this prestigious scholarship, as Dale Chihuly is an internationally acclaimed artist and the most famous glass artist in the world.”

In November 2022, IAIA honored Dale Chihuly with an IAIA Pendleton blanket for his ongoing involvement with and support of IAIA, which has included donations to IAIA’s Annual Scholarship Event and Auction. IAIA is grateful for the Chihuly Foundation’s continuing commitment to the success of Indigenous IAIA students through the Chihuly Scholarship.


The eligible incoming Indigenous student:

  • Must be a member of a federally recognized tribe (Native American/Alaska Native or Canadian First Nations),
  • Must be a full-time undergraduate in any major,
  • Will be chosen based on merit as further described below,
  • Must maintain a minimum 3.0 average to receive the scholarship funding after the first year, and
  • Will be chosen by an IAIA selection committee made up of faculty, staff, and at least one outside art industry representative and selection will be based on the student’s merit, including proven artistic promise, an exemplary portfolio, innovation in their art practice, and their general creativity.

The Dale and Leslie Chihuly Foundation

The Dale and Leslie Chihuly Foundation was established in 2009 to support artists in their practice, ensure access to quality arts education programs, and enhance the quality of life for underserved populations through art-making experiences.

Institute of American Indian Arts

The Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) is the only college in the world dedicated to the study of contemporary Native American and Alaska Native arts. IAIA offers undergraduate degrees in Cinematic Arts and Technology, Creative Writing, Indigenous Liberal Studies, Museum Studies, Performing Arts, and Studio Arts; graduate degrees in Creative Writing, Studio Arts, and Cultural Administration; and certificates in Broadcast Journalism, Business and Entrepreneurship, Museum Studies, and Native American Art History. The college serves approximately 500 full-time equivalent (FTE) Native and non-Native American students from around the globe, representing nearly a hundred federally recognized tribes. Named one of the top art institutions by UNESCO and the International Association of Art, IAIA is among the leading art institutes in our nation and is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).