Students brewing beer and careers on campus

Students brewing beer and careers on campus
ELLENSBURG -- Solving the jobs crisis in this economy is hard for the smartest minds to answer. There is a program at Central Washington University that's finding success. It's not for everyone, but it capitalizes on Washington's strength as a home to craft breweries. The program teaches students how to make beer.

College student A.J. Keagle helps brew beer at Yakima Craft Brewery. And, he's certified to do it.

"It's the most positive thing I've ever done in college, most applicable," says A.J.

A.J. enrolled and graduated from Central Washington's new Craft Beer program. It's a one-year course that teaches students the science of brewing.

"Honestly, I want to start my own brewery," says A.J. "I would love to post down somewhere in Eastern Washington."

"It's a craft brew program, but it really has a Northwest flavor," says professor Steve Wagner.

The program has a nearly 80 percent success rate for students landing a job. With more than 130 craft breweries in Washington, professors expect that rate to keep climbing.

Student's also learn how to market their product: learning about sales, operations and distribution.

"One hundred percent of them want to be there and they're excited about the program," says professor Dwayne Douglas.

So, whether it's pouring a beer or pouring jobs into the job market, it's a new concept CWU professors and students alike are toasting to.

The program isn't cheap. Students pay about $4,000 for the year.

Craft brewers provide more than 100,000 jobs in the United States.