Enroll In Yakima Valley College Wine School



Washington wines are garnering tons of attention and awards over the last decade. What was once a state known for apples, ocean, and Mount Rainier is a rising force in the wine world. At the epicenter of this wine culture is Yakima Valley College (YVC) where a pair of degree offerings are training the new masters of grape growing and winemaking.

I was in Yakima for a travel writer’s event and was able to participate in a two-day wine tour of the Yakima/Prosser area. Within this region are the famed Rattlesnake Hills and Horse Heaven Hills AVA-American Viticulture Areas. I had seen these AVAs listed on wines in restaurants and wine shops recently.  On our tour, we tasted dozen of excellent wines from the Yakima Valley.

When our wine trip continued at the Yakima Valley College on day two, we were treated to a comprehensive tour of the wine school.  Brad Smith gave us a presentation in the Vineyard & Winery Technology Program’s tasting room, wine lab, barrel room, and vineyard. All through the tour, I witnessed a modern facility teaching a wide range of age groups, and genders the art of winemaking. Residents of states near and far come to learn to be a winemaker and grape grower.

YVC offers both a two year and three-year program for students.  Although YVC is a small college with only 6-8 graduates most years, their students are making a difference in the marketplace. Prospective students must decide on whether to take the winemaking path or the vineyard option. YVA offers a Vineyard Technology and Winery Technology Associates Science degree (AAS). When the students have graduated, many of them have won significant awards in their first year out of YVC.

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