glasses with beer of varying colors and brews

Craft Beer Academy and Classes


Craft Beer Academy

With the arrival of breweries like Oskar Blues and Sierra Nevada, Henderson and Transylvania counties are quickly becoming the epicenter of a growing craft beer industry. And as these breweries seek to fill skilled position in their growing workforce, Blue Ridge Community College is at the forefront of supplying qualified applicants. The Craft Beer Academy is preparing students with all they need to know about brewing, cellaring, packaging, and shipping, for a fulfilling career in this exciting job market.


Certification Exams
Blue Ridge Community College is one of two exam sites in North Carolina to provide examinations for highly coveted industry examinations.

  • Cicerone Certification

  • General Certificate in Brewing — Institute of Brewing & Distilling

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Craft Beer Classes


Craft Beer Brewing & Industry
Discover how to become a part of the growing craft beer industry. Expand your knowledge of the brewing, fermentation and production process with attention to marketing, sales and some of the NC brewery laws. Build your knowledge of the craft beer industry and beer brewing with weekly classes and onsite brewery experiences. Hear first-hand from professional brewers, guest speakers and field trips to small - to medium - sized breweries. This course provides a solid introduction to the beer universe and helps prepare for the IBD “General Certificate in Brewing” exam (registration process and exam fee information explained in class). The IBD exam is offered at Blue Ridge Community College Campus at the end of each semester. Students must be at least 21 years old to enroll in this course.


Fundamentals of Craft Beer Track
Students get an in-depth understanding of both the making and serving of beer and learn about the various types of beer and how each is made. As students sample various styles of beer and gain a basic understanding pairing beers with foods, they develop practices for the best presentation and serving of beer. Upon completion, participants will be prepared to take the coveted Cicerone Certification exam. Students must be at least 21 years old to enroll.


Sensory Analysis of Craft Beer
Students will prepare to become certified beer judges by learning about the brewing process on site at Oskar Blues Brewery, studying the BJCP exam guide, and tasting different beer styles including off flavored beers. At the conclusion of the course, students will take the BJCP Beer Judge entrance exam. Upon successful completion, students will be provisional judges and can elect to take the BJCP beer judging examination to become a BJCP member and certified beer judge. Students must be at least 21 years old to enroll.


TiPS (Training Intervention ProcedureS)
Learn how to responsibly sell, service and consume alcohol with the globally recognized TiPS® (Training for Intervention ProcedureS) program. TiPS  empowers you to take a proactive approach toward preventing alcohol misuse and maintaining control of the service environment. The program is designed for servers at restaurants, bars, hotels, in-store tastings, or other establishments where alcohol is consumed on the premises as well as for employees in an alcohol manufacturing setting. You will learn strategies to ensure responsible alcohol awareness and service and specific state and local regulations governing the manufacture and consumption of alcohol.   Students must be at least 21 years old to enroll.


Contact Us

(828) 694-1735


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