Professional Crafts Clay

Clay vase on a plane background. Haywood Community College Professional Crafts. Clay, Fiber, Jewery, Wood.

The Clay program at HCC offers a comprehensive curriculum to support the creation of ceramic work ranging from utilitarian table ware to one-of-a-kind artwork.

two students inspect pots and vessels on the shelves of a kiln cart. clay mugs on plane background

Students feeding a wood fired kilnglazed plate on a display stand with a plane background


Learn a variety of skills and gain technical knowledge of clay and glaze materials.

Hands-on work including firing electric, gas, and wood-burning kilns and managing a studio.

Study the historical and contemporary ceramic practices, marketing strategies, and busines models as part of a well-rounded and practical education.

Graduates will have a thorough knowledge of clay, glaze, and firing techniques paired with business skills to prepare for a future in ceramic production, entrepreneurship, gallery work or teaching.

HCC’s clay studio offers assigned work stations for each student and is well designed with safety and efficiency in mind. The space includes the following equipment:

  • Shimpo Whisper potter’s wheel
  • North Star Star slab roller
  • Clay extruder
  • Complete glaze laboratory
  • Spray booth
  • Clay mixing room
  • Peter Pugger clay mixer
  • Cone Art high temperature electric kilns
  • Gas fired soda kiln
  • Gas fired raku kiln
  • Gas fired reduction car kiln
  • Catenary wood kiln

Emily Reason

​​Portrait of Instructor Emily Reason standing in front of a stone wallProfessional Crafts Clay Instructor


“I experience an elemental satisfaction when working with my hands; manipulating and mastering a material and technique through repetition and problem-solving. In this way, I am deeply connected to craft. I see craft as a discipline, a history to draw from and set of parameters to push. It is an ideal of beauty that I express with great care and labor.”

Emily Reason joined the Professional Crafts faculty at Haywood Community College as the clay instructor in 2017. She received an MFA from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and her BFA from West Virginia University. Emily’s ceramics career has encompassed artist residencies, writing, teaching, exhibitions and eleven years as a full-time studio potter.