Have a hankering to open a brewery in San Diego? There’s a class for that.
San Diego State University’s College of Extended Studies (CES) is offering a six-course certificate program for the business of craft beer.
The program starts this fall and is backed by some of San Diego’s beer titans.
“We have quite an extensive and powerful advisory board,” said CES Program Director Giana Rodriguez.
Members include Karl Strauss, Aztec Brewing Company, Helm’s Brewing Co., Green Flash and Prohibition Brewing Company. Plus the introductory class will be taught by Stone Brewing Co.’s craft beer ambassador Bill Sysak, with additional lectures by Hamilton’s Tavern owner Scot Blair.
On occasion, classes will be held off campus for some in-depth learning.
“Our advisers are more than happy to host at their breweries,” said Rodriguez.
This means students will also have a chance to interact with some of the most powerful brewers in the county, which could lead to professional connections.
“Because of the networking that happens with the industry professionals, there are a lot of personal contacts,” said Rodriguez.
CES is also partnering with Cicerone Certification Program, which will give students a discount to take the Certified Beer Server Exam.
But the craft beer program at SDSU is more business minded than brewing oriented, said Rodriguez. Selection of classes includes marketing, tasting, laws and regulations, brewery management, the history of craft beer – and more. There will also be intensive classes on particular beer styles.
“We want to provide a lot of options so that we can create the program that meets their needs,” she said.
Class size will range from 30-50 people and the program is open to anyone. Up to seven classes will be available during the 2013-2014 academic year, and Rodriguez said they plan to add more. Since it only takes six classes to get certified, students could finish the program in a year.
Each course costs $269, but is $239 if people register early. And Rodriguez said the program is already gaining some traction.
“Just overnight we had 53 inquiries,” she said. “We’re excited, I think it’s great.”
Interest meetings will be held from 6-8 p.m. on June 26 at Helm’s Brewing Co. and from 6-8 p.m. on July 30 at Aztec Brewing Company. There will also be interest booths at Del Mar Beer Fest later this summer.
For more information on the program, visit the CES website.