Inaugural Small Winery Harvest Internship-Scholarship Supports Wine Industry Growth through Education

$12,000 Anonymous Gift Awarded to Junior Austin Bregante Toward Degree in Wine Business Strategies
November 30, 2016
Palmer Emmitt & Donn P. Reisen Scholarship Fund Donor

Palmer Emmitt & Donn P. Reisen Scholarship Fund Donor

Rohnert Park, California - The Wine Business Institute (WBI) at Sonoma State University (SSU) today announced that Austin Bregante, a junior in Wine Business Strategies and Marketing, was awarded the inaugural Small Winery Harvest Internship-Scholarship funded by a $12,000 anonymous donation. The internship-scholarship is designed to cover the cost of tuition and provide a full-time internship focused on small winery operations, including the harvest and production of wine. Palmer Emmitt, Sonoma MBA in Wine Business '13 and co-owner of Emmitt-Scorsone Wines, offered the internship with co-founder and fellow winemaker, Michael Scorsone. The artisan winery is located near Healdsburg and produces wine under the labels Judge Palmer and Domenica Amato.

"Exposure to small winery operations develops a broad skill set, from making and bottling wine, to planning wine club shipments, to managing distribution and compliance issues. The skills that I gained in the Sonoma MBA program, as well as the connections I made through networking, have helped me start my own successful winery business. We're pleased to provide an opportunity for students to see the business as a whole, and figure out which role they may be best suited for after graduation," Palmer Emmitt, Sonoma MBA in Wine Business '13, co-owner at Emmitt-Scorsone Wines said. 
"The scholarship enabled me to apply the knowledge that I've cultivated at the Wine Business Institute and School of Business and Economics, and focus on learning the trade of winemaking while exploring career options. I have a true respect and compassion for the winemaking process after seeing and experiencing first-hand what it takes to produce and sell wine," Austin Bregante, recipient of the inaugural Small Winery Harvest Internship Scholarship said.
"There's no greater gift than having our alumni and donor community help drive the growth of wine business education for the future of the wine industry. This generous investment in Austin and the next generation of leaders provides an extraordinary learning experience, and we're thankful for this generous support and every gift to our programs," Ray Johnson, Executive Director of the Wine Business Institute said. 
WBI awards over $40,000 in scholarships each year in support of career advancement and educational accomplishment to offset costs of tuition, books, fees, housing, and other expenses. Additional scholarships include the Southern Wine & Spirits Scholarship, Charlie Palmer's Pigs & Pinot Annual Scholarship, Donn P. Reisen Scholarship, Vintage Wine Estates Scholarship, Peter Mondavi Sr. Scholarship, Concierge Alliance of Napa Valley and Sonoma Scholarship, Women for WineSense Scholarship, Rhone Rangers Scholarship, Liz Thach Wine Industry Scholarship, Sonoma Valley Cuisine Society Scholarship, LaTosh Wine Business Scholarship, Live Oak Bank Scholarship, and the Seminar and Certificate Programs Scholarship.  
For more information about the Small Winery Harvest Internship-Scholarship, other wine business scholarships, or certificate and degree programs in the WBI and School of Business and Economics, please contact (707) 664-3235, email, or visit
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About the Wine Business Institute
The Wine Business Institute (WBI) is an education and research institute of the School of Business and Economics (SBE) at Sonoma State University (SSU). SSU is the first institution of higher learning in the U.S. to offer seminars, certificates, and degree programs focused on the business of wine. It is the first school of business in the world to offer an executive-level wine business degree. In 2018, WBI will open the Wine Spectator Learning Center, a 15,000-square-foot state-of-the-art education complex dedicated to leadership training for a dynamic and changing wine industry. With its unique location, expert faculty, and deep relationships in the world of wine, WBI attracts current and future professionals from California and around the world to experience the wealth of connections among students, alumni, and industry leaders.