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My undergraduate degree was in food science. One of the compulsory courses was third year industrial microbiology. In the class we were taught about fermentation science – mostly brewing and winemaking and that’s where my interest in wine science and education began. After I completed my bachelors I continued to pursue wine science and research. I completed a postgraduate certificate in Grape and Wine Technology and then my Masters in Biotechnology specializing in oenology. I did my WSET Level 2 Award in Wines because I’ve always wanted to take the WSET courses to complement my wine education and it was another way to expand my knowledge in this field. I enrolled in WSET Level 3 Award in Wines and am looking forward to sitting for the exam this year. It’s been informative and fun to use my science background to learn about wine through WSET education.

My wine education has helped me better understand wine regions across the world. My education has given me a head start on knowledge when visiting new wine regions. I’ve spent the past four years living in New Zealand pursuing my PhD education and my wine background has allowed me to apply my knowledge directly and work on understanding consumer perceptions of New Zealand wine for export. Having recently relocated back to Canada, my wine education and knowledge of fermentation science also helps me professionally. I’m presently working as a research scientist for Lallemand – Biofuels and Distilled Spirits and so I apply my education to working with distilled spirits daily.

Study tips:
If you have the opportunity to visit any of the wine regions highlighted in the WSET courses, do it. Also blind tastings with friends and food makes for easy studying when learning about wine regions and styles.