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Wine Institute launches advanced seminars for students, wineries

Staff Writer

Published: Monday, March 4, 2013

Updated: Monday, March 4, 2013 16:03


STAR // Amanda McNulty

Wine Business Institute Director Ray Johnson hopes the program will bring a large amount of wine industry professionals to Sonoma State.


Sonoma State has launched a new wine program perfect for those staying in Sonoma County for spring break. 

The Wine Business Institute Advanced Seminars will be taught by Martin Jones and Michael Houlihan, who have been working together in the alcohol industry for 40 years. The program will be held March 18 and 19 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. It will be held in Salazar 2016, and costs $595.

“The program is targeted to winery principals who are building the value of their brands for eventual sale or legacy to the next generation,” said Ray Johnson, director of Sonoma State’s Wine Business Institute.  

The Wine Business Institute Advanced Seminars are helping wineries from numerous counties in California, as well as students interested in a career in the wine industry, to learn how they can maximize the value of their wine business. The wine industry is rapidly growing, and this program is designed to help wineries figure out how to get ahead.

Johnson said that this program will bring a larger audience in the wine industry to Sonoma State. 

“It’s a beautiful part of the world, and a particularly beautiful part of Sonoma County,” said Johnson.

The program is being held over spring break because those who are attending the program are most likely working in the wine industry. It also caters to those who are studying at Sonoma State part-time. 

The cost of the program is $595, and the reason for this high cost is because the two-day seminar is equivalent to four of the current four-hour seminars that are each priced at $150.

To find out more information about the wine program, contact Dana Swilley at

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