GlassWorks Committee Meeting Notes


GlassWorks Committee meeting notes
Oct 1, 2018

There we 6 in attendance and one later walk in.

Our meeting began with an expansion update.

The expansion team is meeting with the Architect on Thursday to see if the floor plans are ready.

The Expansion team has given us 1 action item- get pricing for vent hood covers and motor.

Since it has been confirmed there is no 240w power in our new space we held a vote to go ahead and have the large kiln converted to 208w. the vote was a unanimous yes with 2 proxies for a total of 8 yes votes.

We also took a vote on the use of the GlassWorks equipment for it use to be only on glass Items. There was 5 yes votes 2 proxy yes votes, and 1 abstain.

We are still defining our Dept rules and use of our space. When I agreed to be Chair of the Glass Department I also agreed to train 4 people to be teachers that had no glass firing experience, so they may design and practice for upcoming classes. We only have 1 small kiln available in the Ceramic Dept. so we are limited on the number of people using this kiln.

This week we discussed kiln classes, set when we have space, and another kiln purchased so we have the equipment in place for multiple users. So far, we have in place for the kiln use class- students must take all 4 kiln classes and have a short-written test and be able to manually enter 2 different firing programs to pass the class for use of the kilns on personal projects.

We also kick around the subject of, some people that have owned kilns for years, and may already have years of firing experience. Perhaps a test for persons in this situation? But looking at other dept at DMS our Makers still have to take courses such as Woodshop 101, even if they have year’s experience. A decision was not made, we will be revisiting this at out next meeting.

We also discussed who may teach the for required 4 kiln classes and clear persons to use the kilns. I believe a person with an experienced skill set level should be teaching the 4 classes. Also, any student passing the 4 class should have at least 6 months of ongoing experience to be able to teach the kiln classes.

A concern was brought up that if a teacher has 6 months before they could teach, what if they only completed a few firings in this 6 month? they would not have developed the needed skill set. It was suggested by committee members they would like to see the kiln class teaches have a required number different types of firings competed, a certain predetermined time frame before they can teach and clear students for kiln use.

In order to NOT make a hasty decision, I requested we also continue this discussion at our next meeting, since we do not have the equipment in place for multiple users yet. We have plenty of time to define our class structure.

Open House News
With the Help of Mary and Jen we cut and glued 100 pendants, and cut extra glass incase more are needed. Nick Silva is also supposed to let us use his table top display case. If you have any pendant available that we can barrow for display, please contact Diana Rhodes. I also obtained a locking display case in the interactive room, if you would also like to display some of your glass items for open house. I understand we also may a Glass Lamping demo presented in the interactive room for the open house. If you see person watching a Lamping demo, please assist in reminding people to put on protective eye wear on. There are about a dozen pair of protective glasses in the Interactive room for this demo.

Thank you
Anita Willis
GlassWorks Chair


The biggest concern I have is that Glassworks doesnt keep volunteers from wanting to teach. 6 months is a very long time to wait, and I know your concerns. Lets remember to empower our volunteers.


They will be able to teach a large amount of project classes after they take the kiln classes and pass the test. This is specifically for an experienced person teaching our large equipment use.

When the committee brought up a number of each type firings be completed with in a time frame, before someone can teach kiln classes, I was very impressed with this suggestion. We plan to continue the discussion, and take suggestions before we vote on it.


Would a certain number of firings 5-6 be a better metric than 6 months. Like you say 1-2 firings would not be sufficient.


It’s a decision that needs to be made as a committee. My idea of an experienced equipment user will be greatly different than another person idea of an experienced equipment user.

This is why we are taking the time to review the info and vote, so the standard set is not based on one person opinion.


This is a great idea. As for those with years of experience already - I see no reason why they shouldn’t take the same test. But every person is different. When a person approaches us in the machine shop about having experience, it is up to the teacher or chair to make a determination. Usually I’ll take the to the machine and say “Show me what you got”. If they can’t explain what the different things do, and make the appropriate cuts (under supervision of course), they don’t get access and have to take the class. If they pass muster then we sign them off.

I favor this approach. On the HAAS, it usually takes 2 supervised projects before they get signed off. The interval between them is not so important. Showing proficiency is.


Nick we are defining some one to teach using a kiln and personal use.
How do you determine someone experience level to teach the use of the HAAS?


Hmmm. Well it done hasn’t come up. :grin:
It is certainly a gut feeling from observation of how well the can operate it. If they want to teach I ask that they come to the class to see how it runs so that they would teach it in a consistent manner.