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College is now for Studying Beer, Not just Drinking it

Students are now studying beer and brewing as a business to get a well-rounded craft beer education

Students are now studying beer and brewing as a business to get a well-rounded craft beer education

Bringing an entire new meaning to the phrase “back in my college days,” a school in New York is now offering a minor for craft-beer studies, according to ABC News.

Paul Smith College in upstate New York has pioneered the cause of craft brewing and will begin offering the minor this upcoming spring semester. No one is likely to be more enthused about the class selection than the students themselves.

While it may seem a bit on the ironic side to pair college-aged adults with alcohol, craft brewing in the U.S. is actually a growing sector that has plenty of room for business-minded students. As of July 2014, there were 3,040 craft breweries around the country, which is the highest level in nearly 150 years, according to the Brewers Association.

Professors caution, however, that the focus of the class is not just on the drink, but rather a whole host of real world resources that would be helpful for a budding entrepreneur. Management, accounting, operations and administrative opportunities will be explored within the framework of the craft beer industry.

“Regionally, in the Northeast and where the school is located, I found a good deal of action in the craft beer world: brewpubs opening small breweries, our graduates getting into the industry either in the production or promotion or management end,” said Professor Joe Conto of Paul Smith College, according to ABC News. “And there has been a significant shift toward food and beverage tourism across the country.”

The craft brew industry is expected to grow in the coming years, particularly in Alabama, North Dakota and West Virginia, according to City Lab. With a host of new bottles and cans on the market, printed labels and unique designs will have to created for the product to build brand awareness – another avenue of growth for the label industry.

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