Why Should I Join the BGA?

Why Should I become a BGA Member?

Featuring: Sarah Dooley

We get this query a lot: "Why should I join the BGA?" It's not a bad question, and is asked in earnest more often than with a sneer. In an effort to shed light on the value of becoming a BGA member we've asked the leadership at the Barista Guild to spend some time crafting responses to this question. We intend to publish one response a week. 

Our first response comes to us from Executive Council member Mrs. Sarah Dooley:

Why Should I Become a BGA member?

Why should I not become a BGA member may be a better way to translate that question.  Initially, I was curious and the minimal annual fee to join ($45) was a painless introduction.  The discount for competition was a no-brainer.  Who knew 3 years later it would be one of the most valuable networks I could belong to in coffee.  There's a dual outcome in my membership value.  

The first is that I have made great connections with all points of the supply chain in coffee.  This has enabled me to get to the "source" of a lot of topics in a way that usually stopped at my much shorter social network pre-BGA.  This includes solid relationships with SCAA's long list of staff & board of directors, and that is not a plug for future job hopes people.  I have listened in on some of the best conversations my ears could behold.  Some heated debates and "wow, I never thought about it that way" ah ha moments as well.

The second of that dual value is the education team.  I can honestly say I have done more learning then contributing to my peers.  Access to coursework and details on how to become a better listener and trainer. The education opportunities to craft and teach our trade have never been better.  Our BGA certifications have a lot of validity both here in the states and in far off lands like New Zealand, Australia & more. We have opportunities to build up a fundamental training language thus elevating the term associated with specialty. To me, that's exciting!

Now with Camp Pull A Shot I really found a way to connect all the dots gaining perspective as a peer of the barista community, a student and an instructor.  

Simply put, I have a lot of fun and I there's always something to learn.


Those are some compelling words. Thank you, Sarah.

Become part of our ever-growing group of dedicated, professional baristas, and don't forget about the opportunity to further your knowledge & skills at our Camp Pull-a-Shot East Coast happening June 4-7. 

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