Trade School is an all-volunteer effort and will be closing in 2015 if we don’t receive community support.
By Trade School Indy /

You will never have to pay money to attend Trade School classes...but we do require support to be able to successfully organize our school. Can you help us keep our school open in 2015 by volunteering or paying an annual membership fee? We are looking for 250 founding members by November 16th!

If we hit our goal we will be holding a volunteer & teacher information session and celebration FRI NOV 21st 6-8 PM, SAT NOV 22nd 11-1 PM and SUN NOV 23rd 3-5 PM at the Near Eastside Chase Legacy Center. Attending one is required. Mark your calendar if you're planning on pledging as a volunteer or teacher!

What is Trade School?

Classes at Trade School are taught in exchange for barter items decided by teachers. Anyone can teach a class. Every class has a unique barter item list that is based on what each unique teacher would like in exchange for their time and knowledge. Trade School works with each teacher to plan their classes and come up with a barter item list aligned with our principles. Students can then sign up for classes by agreeing to bring at least one of the barter items for the teacher when registering online. Read more about our work here.

Why do we need members?

After two years of all-volunteer work, we've grown to the point where we have real monetary costs and need extra hands to continue running our school. Trade School is currently organized by co-founder Brittany West with the help of Jenn Baumgartner and Ben Turney. Your support will allow us to continue organizing year-round classes, work with our teachers, fund class supplies, host community events, work with other community organizations, keep the website running and pursue bigger dreams like having our own space. Your support also means that you value Trade School and understand that a lot of hard work goes into keeping it alive.

Why the membership model?

We are deeply committed to the membership funding model because we believe it keeps us accountable to the people who believe in the Trade School mission, and because we also believe that it validates our existence; our financial and volunteer support comes from the group of people who believe that there should be educational opportunities available such as Trade School. Without it, Trade School ceases to exist. 

How will it work?

We will accept pledges for volunteers, student memberships and teaching fellowships until November 16th. If we hit our goal, everyone who pledges will be contacted and asked to honor their pledge. From there, we will begin working with our teaching fellows to begin planning classes for 2015 and announce our Yearly Fellowship Launch Celebration! All classes will still be open to the public regardless of whether you are a member, but members will receive certain perks and teaching opportunities are only open to fellows. If we do not hit our goal, Trade School will be going on a permanent hiatus until we can find another way to sustain our school.

What are my membership options as a student or community member?

You have three choices, all with great benefits! For a fancy pie chart of how your membership supports us, please visit here.

$25 Student Membership
Sneak peek of upcoming classes
Your name on our website as a permanent founding member
Invitations to at least 2 member's only events a year
An open invitation to our team meetings

$40 Student Membership
Everything above plus a rad Trade School Indy t-shirt!

40 Volunteer Hours = A $40 Student Membership
Can you support us with your time rather than money? Volunteer hours can be divided between attending classes as a facilitator, helping with administrative duties, working tables at our community events and attending our team meetings.

What is the teaching fellowship?

With the membership model, we created a new structure for teachers we’re calling the Trade School Teaching Fellowship. We created this as a way to give us the opportunity to form lasting relationships with our teachers while giving students the best opportunities to learn a new skill throughout the year. A teaching fellowship will require teaching several classes over the year rather than one. We want to work with teachers who are dedicated to the Trade School model and support our school through attending meetings, events and of course, teaching classes. For more information on what is required of a Teaching Fellow, please visit here.

$20 Teaching Fellowship
Everything a $40 Student membership covers
Your name, bio & class information on our website
Exclusively featured at our yearly launch & community events
Invitations to teach at any community events we're invited to
Media opportunities
A small budget for class supplies & handouts
A platform to share information, meet new people & work with a fantastic group of community members

35 Volunteer Hours = A $20 Teaching Fellowship
If you teach more than 3 classes a year, you can add the time spent teaching extra classes as volunteer hours. Volunteer hours can also be divided between attending other classes as a facilitator, helping with administrative duties, working tables at our community events and attending our team meetings.

I believe in your mission and want to support but don't fall into either category?

Thank you for your support! If you believe in Trade School and would just like to support us as a general community member, please choose the 'your support' option when pledging and we will reach out to you.

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Trade School is an all-volunteer effort and will be closing in 2015 if we don’t receive community support.