SFU hopes new program brews up more successes

SURREY – If you haven’t already heard, people around here kind of love their beer. With three microbreweries in Surrey, one in White Rock and three in Delta, microbrewing south of the Fraser is turning into something of a big deal.

And while it’s one thing to drink beer, SFU Surrey is hoping a new certificate program starting this fall will encourage even more locals to get in on how it’s made.

The program is called the Craft Beer and Brewing Essentials and is part of SFU’s Continuing Studies Faculty. Comprised of five courses, it will start in October. Upon completion, students will receive a Craft Beer and Brewing Essentials Certificate and a bevvy of knowledge in, well, bevvies.

Last year, SFU debuted a lone beer course called the Science of Brewing and according to Larry White, director of non-credit programs at SFU, that course sparked further interest in educational offerings relating to beer.

“We thought this would be an interesting program to reach out to home hobbyists to give them a background in the science of brew production as well as the folks who might already being working in the industry and wanted to learn a small credential,” White explained.

But SFU won’t be the only university offering a course in the science of suds.

Kwantlen Polytechnic University currently offers a two-year diploma program in brewing and brewing operations. That program launched in 2014 and is housed at the KPU Langley campus.

However, White said that this course isn’t meant to compete with KPU’s.

“Our program is giving folks the very foundation stages of craft beer,” he said, noting it would take about nine months for students to complete in its entirety. “Kwantlen’s program is two years so it’s going to attract folks that are a little bit more decided that craft beer is a field they want to go into…and probably have some specific career objectives.”

White said the SFU program would give students a fundamental knowledge on the science behind fermentation, how to assess the quality of beer and culminate in a lab course where they’ll be able to put their knowledge to the test. And with SFU being a partner of Central City Brewers Distillers, White is hopeful the lab will be held at the former brew space located directly behind Central City’s brew pub.


Bottoms up

SFU’s Craft Beer and Brewing Essentials launches in October and registration for the program is now open. Those interested are invited to attend one of several upcoming information sessions, the next of which will be held at SFU Surrey on Jan. 27 at 6 p.m.

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