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Brewing Science Academy Certificate Program

On Campus

The only program of its kind in Western Pennsylvania

Brewing 101, a 10-week, on-ground certificate course for current and aspiring brewers, is designed to train students for a job in the beer brewing industry. The only program of its kind in Western Pennsylvania and housed in the University’s Natural Sciences and Engineering Department, the Brewing Science Academy is made possible with collaborations between Point Park faculty, Master Brewers Association of the Americas (MBAA) members and beer industry experts. 

Point Park University awards successful students a Certificate of Completion. Those who would like to continue their education can take Brewing 201 in the fall. 

Registration for the Brewing 101 is now open. Class size is limited to 20 students.

Course Overview

The Brewing 101 course meets twice per week, typically Monday and Wednesday from 5–8 p.m. The curriculum is divided into two parts: science and professional practice.

The first part is a hands-on course focused on the essential science involved in beer brewing, taught by Point Park University scientists in a lab setting. The culmination of part one is the brewing week. Students will be grouped into teams and work diligently with professional brewing mentors, designing and brewing beer to be entered into our competition.

The second part will focus on the art and craft of brewing. For this part, instructors will mainly consist of beer industry professionals primarily from the Pittsburgh area with a strong representation from MBAA District Pittsburgh. 

The Academy will close with our brewing competition, in which each team's beer will be judged by our pros and a best brew selected.  

This course will be limited to 20 students. No pre-requisites are required to participate. Students must be at least 21 years of age by the start of the program and have a strong passion to learn. 

Part 1: The Science Of Brewing | May 13–June 5, Mondays & Wednesdays 5–8 p.m.

  • Fundamentals of Chemistry for Brewers 
  • Brewing Water 
  • Barley: Malting and Mashing 
  • Hops and the Boil
  • Brewery Mechanics and Physics 
  • Microbiology, Yeast and Fermentation

Brewing Week Date: Week of June 10 | Time: TBA

  • Teams Collaborate with Professional Brewing Mentors
  • Design and Brew Competition Beer

Part 2: The Art and Craft of Brewing | June 17–July 15, Mondays & Wednesdays 5–8 p.m.

  • Brewhouse Operations
  • Beer Design
  • Sensory Analysis
  • Yeast Management
  • Cellaring and Packaging
  • Brewery Cleaning and Sanitizing

Brewing Competition Event: Week of July 15 | Time: TBD

Note: a slight mixing of contents published in Part 1 and Part 2 time frames may occur based on the availability of guest speakers.

Tuition and Scholarship Opportunities

Total Cost: $1,600

  • Includes a Certificate of Completion, T-shirt and growler
  • Participants are responsible for all transportation and parking fees 


There are four full-tuition scholarships available.

TheDistrict Pittsburgh Chapter of the MBAA is proud to continue the Point Park University Brewing Academy Diversity Scholarship. The District Pittsburgh Chapter has partnered with Point Park University to offer two full-tuition, single-use scholarships for the Brewing Science Academy.  
In addition, through a state grant funded by the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board (PLCB), two additional full-tuition scholarships are available for 2024.

Learn more and apply for the scholarships today.


"I cannot speak highly enough about the Brewing Science course that Gregg and Connor have put together at Point Park University. As someone who is currently working on opening up a new brewery, the skills, knowledge, and resources I've gained have been invaluable. In addition, the connections that I've made with industry professionals and the support I've been given after taking the course have been well worth the price of admission. If you are new to the industry or are looking to break into the field, I highly recommend taking this course. You will not be disappointed!"  — Jason Bandemer, Spring Class 2023

"This program has been an invaluable resource in my path to opening our new brewery. The breadth of the subject matter, from brewing science to sensory evaluation to brewhouse operations, has truly deepened my knowledge of the field and also piqued my interest to further learn. Whether a brewery owner, an aspiring brewer, a current brewer or anyone else with interest in the field, this class will help to broaden your knowledge and grow your love of the industry! One of my favorite aspects of the program was the amount of networking available, from the diverse group of students in class to the great guest instructors, to the off-site class visits to local breweries. I made several connections and friends that were instrumental in in helping me to get our brewery off the ground!" — Chris Juricich, owner of Wye Beer Co.

Meet Our Faculty

Gregg Johnson, Ph.D.  IMG_8291_350_OPT.jpg
Associate Professor, Electrical Engineering

Dr. Gregg Johnson founded the University’s Brewing Science program in the summer of 2021. He is an associate professor of electrical engineering and has been a faculty member since 2012. Dr. Johnson earned a Ph.D. in physics from Ohio University in 1995 and has 17 years of engineering experience. During that time, he led multi-million dollar product developments in areas including telecommunications and defense. 

In addition to being a home brewer for 30 years, Dr. Johnson completed the Master Brewers Association of the Americas (MBAA) Brewing and Malting Science course in 2020 and currently serves as the technical chair of MBAA District Pittsburgh. His strong connection with the MBAA has enabled the recruitment of area brewers and other industry professionals to participate in the Point Park University Brewing Science program as lecturers and consultants on curriculum, allowing participants in the program to make valuable networking connections.

Read his full faculty bio to learn more about his academic work. 

Connor Murphy, Ph.D.  Murphy_350_OPT.jpg
Laboratory Associate and Part-Time Assistant Professor

Dr. Connor Murphy earned his Ph.D. in biological sciences at Carnegie Mellon University. He worked as a postdoctoral associate at the University of Pittsburgh and as a microscopy and imaging specialist for Hunt Optics and Imaging, an official vendor of Olympus microscopes. His previous research interests and publications have included DNA chemistry; telomeres, aging and DNA repair; and microscopy and imaging technology. He has worked in the Natural Sciences and Engineering Department of Point Park University since 2017 as the laboratory associate, as well as teaching biology and chemistry laboratory courses.

He has been brewing for over 10 years and is currently working on a research project related to a brewing phenomenon known as "hop creep." 

Contact Us

Any questions regarding the program should be sent to the School of Continuing and Professional Studies at SCPS@PointPark.Edu