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Lourdes University President Mary Ann Gawelek and Vice President for Academic Affairs Terry M. Keller are pleased to announce the institution’s newest undergraduate program – a Bachelor of Science in Craft Beverages. This one-of-a-kind program prepares budding microbrewers and vintners the opportunity to master the art, science and business of winemaking, brewing and distilling. The first classes will begin in August 2019.

The University is the first higher education institution in the United States to offer such a comprehensive bachelor’s degree program. Known as The Full Bodied Degree, Lourdes crafted the robust program in response to industry needs.

“Our administration and excellent faculty strive to be a University that is innovative by choice. To meet the needs of students and employers, we continue to build and expand our partnerships in the for-profit and non-profit sectors,” says Dr. Gawelek.

The craft beverage industry continues to grow. In the U.S., more than 6,600 breweries and 7,946 wineries are currently operating and employ more than 1.8 million individuals. The brewing industry in particular has realized unprecedented growth with 33,716 new brewing jobs, a 614% growth in brewery establishments, and a 126% increase in employment from 2006-2016.

The Full Bodied Degree Program

Students can complete the program in four years with three internships, one which will be through the University’s Irish study abroad program and other opportunities across the U.S. Brewing and vineyard internship partners include Inside the Five, Black Cloister, Twin Oast, Upside, Heidelberg Distributing, select vineyards in California, and Galway Hooker and Nephin Distillery in Galway, Ireland.

Inside the classroom, students will benefit from extensive courses on the artisanship, science, sustainability and business operation of the craft beverages industry. In line with the University’s Franciscan values, the curriculum instills in students and future craft beverage professionals the importance of a respectful approach to the industry in regards to responsible drinking.

“Lourdes has designed a program that has contemporary curriculum supported by experiences in the industry. Our brewing and vineyard partners are excited to work with our students and provide them with the professional skills and knowledge needed to be successful,” adds Dr. Keller.

Those interested in the Bachelor of Science in Craft Beverages program, can contact an Admissions Counselor at 419-885-5291, or

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