Learning about beer or wine without the financial commitment of college tuition is now available to everyday enthusiasts.
Brew School, launched by CNM Ingenuity, is offering four noncredit courses over the next few months. The noncredit program starts with The History of Beer on Sept. 24, followed by Lager Beer Styles in October, Wine 101 in November and Ale Beer Styles in December.
Courses are limited to about 30 people and will be held at Bistro 106, inside Robert P. Matteucci Hall on Central New Mexico Community College’s Main Campus. Each class is $59 per person or $106 for two people.
“We just want to help people become educated,” said Lissa Knudsen, program coordinator for CNM Ingenuity. “… I think these classes will be more appealing to everyday, average brewerygoers who are not interested in making a life and a career out of the brewery business but just want to have a good time and want to learn a little more about beer.”
CNM history professor Brandon Morgan will teach the course on the history of beer. Nick Jones, a faculty member for the brewing and beverage programs at CNM and a former production manager for Santa Fe Brewing Co., will teach the classes on lager styles and ale styles. CNM culinary faculty member Chris Morrison will teach the Wine 101 class, according to Knudsen.
“We’re in the process of hiring about 11 other instructors,” Knudsen said. “As soon as our (human resources) folks get all the processing and paperwork done, you’ll see we have instructors from Bosque Brewing, Marble, Santa Fe and a couple other places. We’re trying to balance it out. We want to make sure that our curriculum is solid and it’s not a waste of anybody’s time.”
In the near future, CNM hopes to have its own brewing facility. CNM Ingenuity also hopes to offer training as well as continuing education courses to people who are working in the brewing industry, possibly including courses on new technology in the industry, Knudsen said. CNM is also working closely with the New Mexico Brewers Guild and hopes to one day hold on-site classes at breweries.
“Higher (education) is changing, and there’s advantages of not always doing something for a degree,” Knudsen said. “Sometimes you just want to get the skills that you’re interested in, in order to go out and do the job.”
But the courses can also serve as a springboard for people interested in obtaining a brewing and beverage management associate’s degree at CNM.
“CNM will make sure to give them credit for prior learning,” Knudsen said. “Our Beverage 1100 class is sort of our introductory class, and that’s going to have components like what are the styles, what is the history and so there’s actually a relationship if someone wanted to bounce the other way.”