Craft beer club returns to campus

Vince Madle, president of Temple University Craft Beer Enthusiasts, is excited to restart the old club for students, faculty and alumni after a three-year hiatus.

Michael McCloskey (left), co-owner of the Interstate Drafthouse and 1996 risk management and insurance alumnus, speaks with another alumnus at the Interstate Drafthouse on June 4. McCloskey is also a risk, insurance and healthcare management professor at Temple. | HANNAH BURNS / THE TEMPLE NEWS

Vince Madle loves strong, bitter beers. Colleen Baillie enjoys a hoppy IPA with a floral aroma. Michael McCloskey’s go-to is a bold-flavored Belgian Quadrupel.

Despite their different tastes in beer, they all had a role in restarting the Temple University Craft Beer Enthusiasts club.

“It’s not a club where people are going to get smashed,” said Madle, a senior risk management major and the president of the club. “It’s really just to learn more about craft beer and have a good time.”

The club is for students, faculty and alumni ages 21 and older to participate in craft beer-related activities, like meeting at local bars once a month to swap six-packs and going on field trips to breweries in and around Philadelphia.

Madle began recruiting members for the club in September by word of mouth and through friends and students in his risk management and general education classes. The club currently has 11 members.

Baillie, the director of enrollment management at the College of Engineering and the faculty advisor for TUCBE, said she remembers wishing a similar club existed when she was an undergraduate student at La Salle University from 1999 to 2003.

“Craft beer wasn’t a thing back then,” Baillie said. “As a college student, you don’t know what to do. You go to whatever is cheap and available.”

Due to university restrictions, members will need to show identification to verify their age and pay a $20 annual fee before being formally inducted as a member.

In addition to the club’s monthly meetings, Madle and Baillie, who is also a 2009 Master of Education alumna, said they’re excited to organize group tours to places like Yards Brewing Company on Spring Garden and Fifth streets. Members will also have the opportunity to visit locations of Sly Fox Brewing Company and Victory Brewing Company, though the specific breweries are yet to be determined.

By participating in the club, members will learn about the history of craft beer and the process of making it.

“It really is an art,” Madle said. “I don’t think people understand all that goes into making craft beer.”

For Baillie, the goal of TUCBE is to have fun, educate students about not binge drinking and appreciate the history and science behind making craft beer.

The previous craft beer club ran from 2012 to 2015. McCloskey, an associate risk, insurance and healthcare management professor, served as the faculty advisor.

Madle said he was enjoying a beer at the Fishtown bar Interstate Drafthouse when McCloskey approached him about relaunching the club. McCloskey, a 1996 risk management and insurance alumnus, co-owns the bar on East Palmer Street near Girard Avenue and is.

“The purpose of the club is to promote the passion of homebrewing and craft beer from all around the world,” Madle said. “It’s understanding how to socialize with your peers, friends and colleagues without having to get drunk.”

The group is looking to fill executive board positions, including finding a woman for the vice president position.

“We want to definitely have female presidents in the club,” Madle said. “We don’t want people having the impression that this is like a frat event or anything like that.”

The club’s first meeting will be at Interstate Drafthouse on Oct. 28 at 8:30 a.m. The agenda includes a six-pack swap, where members bring a pack of beer, talk about why they like their choices and trade bottles.

The meeting will be held until 9 a.m., and the plan is for members to stick around after to drink and watch the 9:30 a.m. Eagles vs. Jaguars game.

Madle said TUCBE is prohibited from meeting on campus, so each meeting will be held at Interstate Drafthouse, another local bar or one of the various breweries Madle and Baillie hope to visit as a group.

McCloskey said that not being able to meet or advertise on campus was an issue for the first club, but he hopes they will beat the odds.

Owen Godoy, a junior risk management major and member of TUCBE, said the club will have a positive impact on campus.

“The club has the potential to be a lot different than other clubs on campus,” Godoy said. “When students begin to transition from college life to professional life, their drinking habits also change.”

Baillie has similar visions for TUCBE creating a sense of community among Owls.  

“At the end of the day, I don’t see this as just an alcoholic consumption organization, but as a way to bring the university together for a common interest and to get students and faculty to interact together,” Baillie said.  

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