Wisdom of the Elders, Inc. (Wisdom) has developed the 2012-2013 NISA Tribal Apprenticeship Project. We are seeking ten NISA master tribal storytellers to apply for a funded opportunity to mentor two emerging tribal storytellers either from your tribe or from your community over the next 9 months, between October 2012 and June 2013. Any master tribal storytellers from the Pacific Northwest who is a NISA member is invited to apply.


Wisdom of the Elders, Inc. (Wisdom) and the Northwest Indian Storytellers Association (NISA) are sponsors of the 2012-2013 Northwest Indian Storytellers Apprenticeship Project (Apprenticeship). This project will provide up to ten Master Tribal Storytellers from the Northwest (Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Alaska) with opportunities to complete 9-month Tribal Storytelling Apprenticeships by training and mentoring twenty Emerging Tribal Storytellers from October 2012 through June 2013.

You will work one-on-one monthly and in group sessions with two emerging tribal tellers as they learn the art and craft of traditional tribal storytelling. As a result of this apprenticeship, they will learn to present traditional stories from their tribal background within their community and at the 2012 and 2013 NISA Emerging Storytellers Matinee events. These emerging tribal storytellers will also have opportunities to learn from and network with other master tribal storytellers and network with and solidify relationships with their peers at 2012-2013 NISA events.

This Apprenticeship helps our region’s tribal communities in three ways:
1) 20 Emerging tribal storytellers will learn, tell and preserve essential stories and be acknowledged for their contribution to cultural sustainability
2) 10 Master tribal storytellers will share their wisdom and knowledge and be honored and revitalized for the essential role they play in passing their artistic and cultural knowledge on to qualified emerging tribal tellers
3) Oral cultural traditions within 29 tribes of Washington, 9 tribes of Oregon, 5 tribes of Idaho and urban Indians of diverse tribal affiliations will be preserved and in the spirit of race reconciliation, shared with the public audiences.

Northwest Indian Storytellers Association was formed to encourage, preserve and strengthen traditional storytelling among tribes in Oregon, Washington and Idaho, and to share with our regional community. NISA is administered by Wisdom of the Elders, Inc. (WISDOM) whose mission is Native American cultural sustainability, multimedia education and race reconciliation.

Download the printable application form (PDF)