Cal Poly's wine program is now officially a department

acornejo@thetribunenews.comSeptember 4, 2013 

The Wine and Viticulture Program at Cal Poly is now an official department within the College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences. It is one of 10 programs in the college.

The program currently has 250 students and plans to add an additional 90 students this year. College officials say that is the largest incoming class in the program’s history.

“I am thrilled that Wine and Viticulture has been conferred department status,” said Jim Cooper, department head. “It is a reflection of the popularity of our program, our outstanding climate for producing high-end wines, and the fact that we are the only university to offer a comprehensive program covering enology, viticulture and wine business.”

All students in the department conduct hands-on work in vineyards and wineries, where they produce a number of wine varietals.

In addition, as part of the curriculum, students participate in paid internships at domestic and international wineries, such as J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines, Duckhorn Vineyards and France’s Chateau Margaux.

Cal Poly first offered Wine and Viticulture curriculum as a minor in 1999. It was then offered as a major in 2004. In 2011, it became a stand-alone program.

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