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Fermentation Science senior brews beer

Posted by scott.weybright | October 2, 2017

By Maya Wahl, CAHNRS Academic Programs

From working with bears to working with farmers and everything in between, CAHNRS students fuel their passions through hands-on experiences that you can’t find anywhere else on campus.

Caleb Wiebe pours a pink liquid into a giant stainless steel vat.
Fermentation Science student Caleb Wiebe prepares a new batch of beer during his internship at Hunga Dunga Brewing Co. in Moscow.

Students work hard all year long to secure amazing jobs and internships to continue their learning outside of the classroom. Some have even traveled across the country to find these opportunities. Others are lucky enough to find them right here on the Palouse.

Students pursuing a major within the School of Food Science have the unique ability to find work in all facets of food production ranging from product development to quality control. Caleb Wiebe, a senior studying Food Science with a specialization in Fermentation Science, expanded his classroom knowledge through his internship this summer at Hunga Dunga Brewing Company in Moscow, Idaho.  His responsibilities included cleaning brewing equipment, mixing ingredients, and filling kegs, all of which are vital to the brewing process.

In the last ten years, beer drinkers and beer makers have grown exponentially. Washington State ranks 6th in the nation for breweries per capita, with 334 craft breweries. Caleb hopes to become a brewer or brewmaster after completing his degree. This internship gave him a glimpse of the growing world of brewing. “I think internships can provide useful experience and allow you to connect with people in the industry,” he said. Caleb also built valuable relationships with industry professionals that he will foster for the rest of his career.

Caleb and another man hold tiny glasses with small amounts of beer.
Caleb and co-workers test the quality of one of their new batches of beer during his internship this summer.

This was not Caleb’s first experience working in the food science industry. He has also worked at the WSU Creamery for two years as well as working on a vineyard in Tennessee for a summer.

His diverse work experience gives Caleb a wider perspective on the industry as a whole. These types of jobs give “you insight as to whether or not you would want to pursue that type of career in the future,” he said.

His time at Hunga Dunga, for instance, confirmed his passion for brewing.

“My favorite part about this job is seeing first-hand answers to questions about the process that I have after learning about it briefly in a couple courses,” he said.

These kinds of opportunities are presented in various ways, from career fairs to personal connections. Caleb was introduced to Hunga Dunga through one of his professors. Every CAHNRS Coug can do the same by seeking out opportunities to further their learning. To find more information on internships on and off campus, visit https://wsu.joinhandshake.com/ and connect with your academic advisor/internship coordinator.