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HACC brews up brewing science program

Harrisburg Area Community College is tapping into the growing pool of local brewmasters.

In a collaboration with the Brewers of Pennsylvania, HACC is developing a certificate in brewing science program that will begin in spring 2016.


“We are excited that brewers from many of Pennsylvania’s breweries will be involved in the development of the curriculum and delivery of the program,” said Abigail Peslis, director of continuing education.

The craft beer movement continues to get stronger in Pennsylvania, especially in Central Pennsylvania. Lancaster County has the most active brewery licenses in the commonwealth.

Small and independent American craft brewers contributed $55.7 billion to the U.S. economy in 2014. And the industry provided more than 424,000 jobs.


“By providing formalized courses on brewing science, HACC will fine-tune the skills of those who want to join the craft beer industry in local communities as well as those already working in the industry,” Peslis said.


Classes will be taught at HACC’s Harrisburg campus, as well as locally at partner breweries. These classes could eventually expand to all HACC campuses and online, she said.


The program being developed will be about 32 weeks, and include a four- to six-week internship, Peslis said. There also will be an option for students to take certain parts of the certificate program as stand-alone offerings.


In addition, HACC is in talks with four-year institutions to expand the educational opportunities for budding brewmasters.


HACC has met with many local breweries about the program, including Troegs Brewing Co., Appalachian Brewing Co., Zeroday Brewing Co., The Vineyard and Brewery at Hershey and Something Wicked Brewing Co.

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