Jerilyn Virden graduated with a BFA from West Virginia University in 1997 and received an MFA from Southern Methodist University in 2001. She was an artist-in-residence at Penland School of Crafts from 2001 to 2004. In 2006, she received a North Carolina Arts Fellowship Grant. Before attending graduate school, Virden completed a two-year assistantship at the studio of Silvie Granatelli, in Floyd, Virginia. She also studied abroad at the Jing-de-zhen Ceramic Art Institute in China.