Detroit brewery, EMU partner to provide more opportunities in the beer brewing industry

Posted at 8:30 PM, Jun 05, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-05 20:30:45-04

DETROIT (WXYZ) — Take a look behind the scenes look at a cutting edge program designed to improve diversity in the growing industry of beer brewing here in Michigan.

7 Action News reporter Simon Shaykhet shows us who’s behind the incredible collaboration in Midtown Detroit and how you can get involved.

Eastern Michigan University is partnering with a Detroit brewery to help Detroiters enter into the booming industry, and the skills they are learning are impressive to say the least.

Inside an office building in the heart of Midtown Detroit, there’s opportunity brewing for the next generation of beer enthusiasts.

Detroiter Lamont Lindsey is among those seeing the process of brewing up close and in a hands on way few have been able to before.

“You’re taking substances that you would never imagine and could create a finished product. It’s like an assembly line almost,” said Lamont Lindsey, a student in the program.

We were invited to go behind the scenes to checkout a unique collaboration, a partnership with Midtown Detroit Inc., Mission Partners, DTE Energy, Invest Detroit, EMU and Nain Rouge Brewing in Detroit.

The goal, pairing up students from a wide range of diverse backgrounds with college chemistry professors and other industry experts to open doors into a major industry.

The program, Gregg Wilmes, chemistry professor at EMU, says is “kind of an advanced internship, or apprenticeship program.”

The low cost course gives students the ability to study the science behind brewing, teaching them the skills needed to one day work in the field and perhaps start their own brewery.

“We’re looking to get them directly into the beer industry. To give them a bit of a scientific boost so they can do a better job making beer that’s consistently excellent,” Wilmes added.

Some students who’ve already tried to do this on their own say this type of environment is the chance of a lifetime. Fifty-percent of the class is reserved for Detroiters and only a high school diploma or GED is required.

“I’m still in software. I’ve been a home brewer for 5 years though. It’s still very experimental,” said Stephen Looney said about his participation in the program.

Applications are being accepted for classes beginning in September.

Students will meet four days a week during the 12-week course and will include field trips to local breweries and craft cocktail bars.

For more information or to enroll in the program, visit or call 313-420-6000.