How to Become a Brewer's Apprentice

Written by marji mcclure
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How to Become a Brewer's Apprentice
Beer drinkers can turn a leisure activity into a career by becoming a brewer's apprentice. (beer-mug from beer image by Witold Krasowski from

For many people, enjoying a glass of beer is something they do in their spare time. For some, it actually becomes a career. You can become involved in the entire beer-making process by working for a brewer at a brewery. One career option to consider, which is more of an entry-level position in this industry, is a job as a brewer's apprentice. To become a brewer's apprentice, formal education is generally necessary. There are many ways in which people can gain the education and training they need to be successful in this field.

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    Get an appropriate education. The American Brewers Guild offers two programs. One is a 28-week CraftBrewers Apprenticeship, which includes classes as well as five weeks of hands-on training at a brewery. The other offering is Intensive Brewing Science & Engineering, a 23-week course that includes gaining brewery and laboratory experience at a microbrewery or brewpub. This course explains the engineering behind the brewing process. You don't need a college degree to enter either program, but you do need to provide proof (in the form of a transcript) that you've completed a college-level mathematics class and a college-level science class.

    The Siebel Institute of Technology and World Brewing Academy offers several different programs on brewing. One option is a 12-week WBA Diploma program. This includes education in problem-solving and business practice, as well as hands-on brewing and lab work. The WBA Associate program is a 6-week program that teaches students just the basics of professional brewing.

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    Get on-the-job training. With or without formal educational training, another way to become a brewer's apprentice is to gain related on-the-job training. There are many jobs from which to choose that can provide valuable and relevant experience for individuals seeking a career as a brewer.

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    Get experience in a related field. In an article on the website, Teri Fahrendorf, a head brewer, suggests finding specific professions that will provide solid experience in the field, such as a brewpub owner or a microbrewery investor. Non-paid jobs that can also yield that experience, according to Fahrendorf, include working as a homebrewer or local beer judge.

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