State Labor Department, SUNY offering craft brewing and distilling apprenticeships

The state Labor Department and the SUNY system are partnering to offer a first of its kind craft brewing and distilling apprentice program.

Frog Alley Brewing and Albany Distilling Company of Albany have signed on to provide on-the-job training, while SUNY Schenectady will provide related courses.


SUNY Chancellor Dr. Jim Malatras said, “Expanding apprenticeship programs are essential in filling critical employment gaps in high demand industries while developing significant pathways to long-term careers with good pay.  The partnership with Frog Alley Brewing and Albany Distilling is doing just that by establishing the state’s first craft brewer and distillery apprenticeship program in a growing industry.  I want to thank the State Labor Department, SUNY Schenectady Community College and Frog Alley for their collaborative vision in developing this new program that will no doubt yield real job opportunities and business expansion and productivity in this new and exciting field. SUNY stands ready and willing to continue to expand apprenticeship opportunities across New York State.”

Architect, developer and owner of the project and President of Frog Alley Brewing JT Pollard, said, “Hosting SUNY Schenectady’s Brewery, Distillery and Confectionary programs is an honor for our team. Together we are providing hands-on training, creating a pipeline of future employees for local businesses.”


Founder and CEO of Albany Distilling Company John Curtin said, “This is an incredible step for small business in New York State, and another reason it’s the best place in the country for craft beverages. An industry isn’t sustainable without a workforce, and this program ensures craft beverages will be a viable and important part of our economy for years to come.”

The Center for Economic Growth will provide sponsorship for the program. Frog Alley Brewing and Albany Distilling Company will provide on-the-job training, and SUNY Schenectady will provide related classroom instruction. The Brewer/Distiller Registered Apprenticeship Program is a 20-month program with over 3000 required hours of training which includes a combination of on-the-job training and classroom instruction/coursework.

Video of today’s remarks and tour can be found here.
Video of the Brewer/Distiller Apprenticeship Class is available here.


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