From ailments to ales: Retired dentist cuts his teeth in brewing at NC


Meet the retired dentist who has come all the way from Fairfield, Ohio to go back to school at Niagara College. Davis began his first year of NC's Brewmaster program in September.

He may soon be a brewmaster, but one of the College’s newest first-year students at the Teaching Brewery is much more familiar with the title ‘doctor.’

Dr. Wade Davis began his new life as a student in NC’s Brewmaster and Brewery Operations Management program in September at the age of 73, after five decades as a dentist in Fairfield, Ohio. Davis noted that he was on the verge of retirement after 48 years in dentistry when he began to consider sinking his teeth into a new venture.

“I knew that I wanted to remain actively productive,” he said. ‘I almost immediately started to think about enrolling in the Brewmaster program as a first step toward a second career.”

With a lifelong passion for food and beverages, and an educational background in chemistry as an undergrad at Ohio University, Davis found that the idea of studying brew-making and brewery operations was a natural fit.  He began researching online, reading articles about the growth of the microbrewing industry, and consulting with a former classmate who was a master brewer for Anheuser-Busch.

In August 2016, Davis visited Niagara College’s NOTL Campus. He was impressed by the breadth of the programs the College offers, its installations and infrastructure, and affability of the staff. He attributed the positive experience largely to professor Osvaldo Ávila who enthusiastically provided him with information about NC and some of its programs, as well as his visit to the Teaching Brewery.

“I was particularly impressed when I visited the Brewery retail store, where I talked with students and graduates who readily endorsed the Brewmaster program, and I sampled some of the beer products,” Davis said.

In November 2016, he applied to NC’s Brewmaster program and was accepted in January.

Since he began his studies at NC, Davis said he is enjoying the experience. He commends staff and faculty for a warm and professional reception, particularly commending director of International Division Sean Coote, as well as CFWI associate dean Gary Torraville for easing his re-entry into academic studies.

“I am finding it energizing to be back in school, surrounded by such a diverse student body eager to learn, as I am. It took no time at all to notice how in tune NC is in preparing its graduates to enter the job market,” he said.

“I’m not yet sure what area of the brewing industry I will be pursuing, but I do know this: NC is fast becoming ‘my NC.’”


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