Schools Training

UBC Students to Brew Their Own Beer

15 FEB 2012
Topic : Education News

Student unions have always been keen on fundraising activities (mine liked to hold a beer olympics), but the boys and girls at University of British Columbia may have just found the mother of all profit makers: its own brewery (or more specifically, the sale of cheap, locally produced beer).

UBC’s student union, the Alma Mater Society, plans on opening a brewery on campus in August 2014. The brewery will be student-owned and will keep the hops flowing at the university’s two bars, the Pit and the Perch. Each bar will have its own homebrew.

“And we thought it would be awesome to brew our own beer,” said Jeremy McElroy, the student union’s president, to the Toronto Star. The idea behind the brewery is to make the union self-sustainable, and a microbrewery on campus may be a stroke of genius. About 10,000 litres of beer are consumed at UBC campus bars per year, according to the union, with the two student-run bars accounting for about half of that.

The idea for the brewery came from a 2006 student survey about what should occupy a building on campus. It has continued to take root since then, with the plan now for the union to offer standard brands (think Molson and Bud) and its own craft beer at a slightly cheaper price.

This would be the first student-run brewery in Canada, however, Niagara College has a university-run, teaching brewery, which is also the first of its kind in Canada. The 1,500-square-foot facility in located in Niagara-on-the-Lake, and it gives students the chance to develop hands-on beer making skills while brewing their own craft beer.

Clearly, it’s time to go back to school!