The American Home Furnishings Alliance (AHFA) Furniture Foundation awarded $44,000 in grants for 2021, with a focus on scholarships for training and academic programs to support the industry.
The Furniture Foundation was established in 1948 to fund research and educational initiatives aimed at improving management, manufacturing and marketing within the home furnishings industry. Since 1990, it has distributed more than $4.2 million in grants to support its mission. The 2021 grants include:
- $15,000 for 60 scholarships to the Alexander Furniture Academy in Taylorsville, N.C., part of Catawba Valley Community College (CVCC). The academy offers sewing and upholstery classes in a simulated factory setting developed in collaboration with local manufacturers.
- $7,000 in scholarships to the Catawba Valley Furniture Academy in Hickory, N.C. The academy offers “stackable” credentials in seven areas, including automated cutting, manual cutting, pattern-making, sewing, inside upholstery, outside upholstery and spring-up assembly.
- $5,000 for 28 full scholarships to the Caldwell Community College & Technical Institute (CCC&TI) Furniture Technology Institute in Hudson, N.C. CCC&TI trains workers for careers as industrial sewing machine operators and upholsterers. Like the CVCC program, students receive hands-on training in a simulated factory environment. CCC&TI also received $5,000 in marketing funds to boost recruitment efforts for the institute.
- $12,000 to Appalachian State University in Boone, N.C., to fund four $3,000 scholarships for the furniture design program, which provides students with a bachelor of science degree in industrial design focused on product development, environmental concerns and manufacturing requirements.