Contact The NJ State Council
on the Arts
Mailing Address:
NJ State Council on the Arts
P.O. Box 306
Trenton, NJ 08625-0306

Office Address:
33 West State Street, 4th Floor
Trenton, NJ 08608

Tel: (609) 292-6130
NJ Relay: 711

Grant Opportunities
Current Grant Opportunities
Guidelines and applications are available in the following grant categories for Fiscal Year 2021. Please read specific eligibility criteria carefully.
COVID Critical Needs Grant

The COVID Critical Needs Grant Program (CNN) is a single year grant program that provides support for COVID-19 personal protective equipment (PPE) and safeguarding needs that meets the Council’s eligibility requirements.

Technical assistance will be available in December and January. Please see below for more information.

Application Deadline: January 28, 2021, 4:00 PM EST

COVID Critical Needs Grant Guidelines - English
COVID Critical Needs Grant Guidelines - Spanish
COVID Critical Needs Grant Application Technical Assistance

Video: COVID Critical Needs grant program overview presented at ArtPride webinar.

Artists in Education (AIE)

AIE is the cornerstone of the Arts Council Arts Education Program and is cosponsored with Young Audiences of New Jersey and Eastern Pennsylvania. Through this annual grant program, practicing professional artists are placed in long-term residencies (20+ days) in schools across the state. Residencies are offered in all disciplines and at all grade levels. All NJ PreK-12 schools can apply for one-year residencies.

Important Dates:
February 5, 2021: Early Bird Deadline
March 5, 2021: Final Grant Application Deadline

Artists in Education Guidelines and Application

Artists in Education Residency Grant Program Information

Arts Education Special Initiative Grants (AESI)

New Jersey arts organizations and units of government, colleges, or universities with an arts education-based mission are invited to apply for this grant program to support new or expanded programs that make substantial contributions to quality arts education in schools and youth agencies. This grant category intends to aid arts organizations in developing their full potential as community resources to educational systems throughout New Jersey and create a stronger infrastructure for arts education statewide.

Grants available through this application are for the period July 1, 2021 – June 30, 2022.

Important Deadlines:
February 3, 2021: Notice of Intent due by 4:00 PM EST
February 11, 2021: FY22 application opens for eligible organizations
February/March 2021: Open office hours for technical assistance
March 25, 2021: Application due by 4:00 PM EST
April/May 2021: Peer panel deliberation
June 2021: Council Grants Committee review
July 2021: FY22 award recommendations made at Council Annual Meeting

AESI Grant Guidelines – English
AESI Grant Guidelines – Spanish
AESI Grant Application Technical Assistance
Future Grant Opportunities
Arts Project Support (APS)

Arts Project Support (APS) provides support for a project that meets the Council’s eligibility requirements. A project is defined as a public activity or event that occurs once during the year either as a single day or weekend presentation, or a series of the same presentation occurring within a very limited and specific timeframe (12-weeks or less). Priority will be given to projects that provide opportunities to engage new voices, reach new communities, or encourage innovation in the field.

This category does not support on-going or multiple programs or the general operations of an organization. GOS and GPS grantees are not eligible to apply for APS grants except in Folk Arts.

Application Deadline: The Application Deadline for FY20 has passed.

Arts Project Support FY20 Grant Guidelines

FY20 Grant Application Webinar

General Operating Support (GOS)

GOS grants are awarded to New Jersey based, nonprofit, arts-missioned organizations to help underwrite the expense of their total operation including the expense of producing and presenting arts events. GOS grants are typically awarded with a three-year commitment, subject to contract stipulations and available funds.

Application Deadline: The Application Deadline for FY20 has passed. Please check back in Fall 2021 for information about the FY23 General Operating Support Grant opportunity.

General Operating Support FY20 Grant Guidelines

FY20 Grant Application Webinar

General Program Support (GPS)

GPS grants are awarded to New Jersey based, nonprofit organizations, agencies, institutions, or units of local government to help underwrite the expense of presenting major, on-going arts programs. This grant category is open to a variety of organizations that produce or present on-going public arts programs. GPS grants are typically awarded with a three-year commitment, subject to contract stipulations and available funds.

Application Deadline: The Application Deadline for FY20 has passed. Please check back in Fall 2021 for information about the FY23 General Program Support Grant opportunity.

General Program Support FY20 Grant Guidelines

FY20 Grant Application Webinar

Individual Artist Fellowship Awards

Highly competitive awards to New Jersey artists in 12 different arts disciplines awarded solely on independent peer panel assessment of work samples submitted. The anonymous process is focused solely on artistic quality, and awards may be used to help artists produce new work and advance their careers. This program is carried out in partnership with the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation.

To learn more about the Individual Artist Fellowship program, visit the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation website.
Folk Arts Apprenticeships

Due to the current COVID-19 crisis, anyone interested in the status of this grant program should contact Council staff.

Folk Arts Apprenticeship Guidelines

Projects Serving Artists (PSA)

Projects Serving Artists (PSA) grants provide support for a project that meets the Council’s eligibility requirements. A project is defined as a program that offers technical support or services to artists who reside in New Jersey or whose work has or will benefit New Jersey residents. The project must demonstrate direct benefit to New Jersey artists. Applicants may request up to 50% of the project’s expenses and the grant is to be matched 1:1 ($1 earned or raised and spent per $1 received from the Council).

Examples of eligible projects include, but are not limited to: specialized space for creating, practicing, or producing work; and assistance or training in areas of marketing, legal issues, accounting, insurance, technology, and/or artist career development skills.

This category does not support the commissioning of new work, “networking” opportunities, or projects that mainly support, engage, or further compensate the artistic leadership of an organization. Applicants unclear about the eligibility of a project should contact Council staff.

Current Local Arts Program grantees are not eligible to apply for PSA grants.

Applicants should consult the Frequently Asked Questions document for additional guidance and support.

Projects Serving Artists Grant Guidelines

PSA Technical Support Video

Cultural Trust Grants to Arts Organizations

The Trust provides grants to support capital projects, and institutional and financial stabilization of arts, history, and humanities organizations in New Jersey. Funding for grants comes from interest earned on the Cultural Trust Fund, which is a permanent investment fund. For this round, an organization must fulfill a primary arts mission through active programs and services.

To learn more about the FY21 grant opportunity for arts organizations, visit the Cultural Trust website.
NJ Arts Professional Learning Institute (APLI)

APLI is New Jersey's arts education professional learning opportunity that pairs teaching artists and school partners in collaborative, engaging workshops throughout the state. This paid opportunity is available for teaching artists and classroom educators who work within the state of NJ.

APLI's mission is to provide professional learning opportunities to New Jersey’s teaching artists, classroom teachers, and school administrators. APLI aims to engage the arts educator in inclusive, progressive, arts-based professional learning experiences so that the whole student can be reached, inclusive of race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, and perceived ability.

To learn more about this paid opportunity, visit

Grant Programs & Services
All of the programs and services of the Council focus its modest financial and human resources on enabling the cultural community of New Jersey to create those public values for the benefit of all New Jerseyans, both those that are intrinsic and those that are instrumental such as fostering quality education, stimulating economic development, bolstering tourism and building NJ pride.

The Council does so in ways that express its own set of public values: equal access, fair decision-making based on independent evaluation, uniform criteria and funding principles, and full public accountability. A great many of its programs and services are carried out in partnership and collaborations with literally dozens of other organizations statewide.

Grant Application Process for Organizations
The grant cycle for GOS, GPS, PSA and APS begins with the distribution of Guidelines in early November, followed by Technical Assistance Webinars and Workshops, which are held statewide. A Notice of Intent to Apply is required for most grant applications and is due in December. The full application is due in February. Specific dates vary year-to-year.

Grant applications are read, discussed, and evaluated by peer review panels made up of independent experts in each of the different categories and disciplines of the applicant pool. The panels convene in Trenton throughout the spring and evaluate the applications in strict accordance to the criteria as published in the Guidelines.

Once all applications are evaluated by all panels, the consensus comments and rankings are forwarded to the Council's Grants Committee for deliberation in forming recommendations to the full Council. The Committee bases its work on funding principles it adopts respective of how best to invest public dollars in organizations and projects that provide high quality programs and great public benefit. The Council holds its Annual Meeting (generally the last Tuesday in July) to vote on and award grants. Following the Annual Meeting, all applicants will receive a decision letter that includes the grant amount, if awarded, and consensus comments.
This Year’s Council Grantees
Past Grants Awarded
For a listing of the Council recent grants made to organizations, projects and individual artists click on the appropriate heading below: