Craft Beer Certificate Program

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What’s brewing

Central Virginia is an ever growing hotspot for the craft beer industry. According to travel booking site Wanderu, Richmond is "the best craft beer city in the Northeast - and 9th best in the country". To meet this growing demand, the VCU Office of Continuing and Professional Education (OCPE) has partnered with on-campus and industry partners to offer the VCU Craft Beer Certificate Program, a noncredit certificate of completion in the art of craft beer. The program provides an exciting opportunity for knowledge expansion of the craft beer industry.

Read more about what's brewing.

Two tracks will be available to meet all needs of the craft beer industry including the Business of Craft Beer, and the Craft Brewer Certificate track (still in development) that will focus on preparation for industry credentialing.

The program provides a unique experience that integrates classroom and experiential learning, with on-site experiences taught by industry experts. Our industry and community partner engagement serves as a great resource for exposure, knowledge, and hands on experiences and work as you move through the program.

What we have on tap

The Craft Beer Essentials Online course covers the types and styles of beer, the history of each, and the regional history of craft beer. The course is offered via Zoom, and you are provided with a shopping list of beers to purchase, if you'd like to take part in the opportunity to taste a variety of types and styles of beer. After two evenings, you will walk away with a new understanding and love for craft beer. Check back for dates. Participants in the Business of Craft Beer earn a Certificate of Completion from VCU; a certificate for licensee training completion with the Virginia ABC; and a Craft Brewers Guild Quality and Safety Certificate in partnership with the Virginia Craft Brewers Guild. Check back for dates.

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The Business of Craft Beer will teach you the essential business skills needed to be successful in the craft beer industry. Topics include:
  1. Entrepreneurship
  2. Business Operations and Human Resources
  3. Financial Activities
  4. Packaging
  5. Branding and Marketing
  6. Sales and Customer Service
  7. Engineering and Maintenance
  8. Safety and OSHA

The Craft Brewer Certificate (still in development) will offer preparation for industry credentialing. Topics will include:
  1. Process and Ingredients
  2. Brewing and Quality
  3. Engineering and Maintenance to include equipment, mechanics and transfer
  4. Safety and OSHA to include sanitation, chemicals, training, and handling
  5. Packaging to include bottling, process and equipment, storage, etc.
Concludes with a capstone internship at a local brewery

Quench your thirst

Registration fees include instruction and all necessary materials, and can be paid through OCPE's online registration system. Ask about discounts available for VCU Alumni, VCU and VCU Health employees, and active-duty military, reservists, Guard members, veterans, and military spouses. Coupon codes cannot be combined.

All classes are limited to participants who are 21 years of age and over at the time of the first meeting. For the Craft Brewer Certificate (still in development), there will be a preferred prerequisite of a college level chemistry course and a college level biology course, or equivalent experience.

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