Wine Foundation Awards $46,000 to Empower Students of Washington Wine

June 28, 2022 — The Washington Wine Industry Foundation awarded $46,000 in scholarship to six students pursuing higher education in viticulture and enology. The awards were made from six funds:

  • Albert Don Memorial Scholarship – Established in 2021 by the Don Family to honor Washington’s respected agriculture and grape innovator Albert Don.
  • Alliance of Women in Washington Wine Scholarship – Established in 2021 by the Alliance of Women in Washington Wine to advance and inspire female students pursuing any viticulture or enology related program.
  • Foundation Scholarship – Established in 2013 by the Foundation Board of Directors, combined with funds honoring Charles Lill, Michael Manz, Glenn Coogan, and John Farmer.
  • George and Susan Carter Scholarship – Established in 2017 by the Carter Family to honor WSU researcher and winemaker George Carter and his wife Susan.
  • Horse Heaven Hills Wine Growers Scholarship – Established in 2005 by members of the Horse Heaven Hills Wine Growers group who are dedicated to promoting education of the grape growing and wine producing industries in Washington.
  • Walter J. Clore Scholarship – Established in 1997 by the Washington Winegrowers Association to recognize and honor the research and lifetime achievements of Walter J. Clore, a pioneering Washington vintner.

The 2022 scholarship recipients are:

  • Alexa McDaniel is currently a fourth year PhD candidate at Washington State University’s (WSU) Horticulture department. She is a first-generation student in her family, with a BS in Horticulture from Oregon State University. McDaniel’s research focuses on alternative pest management technologies for powdery mildew and grape mealybug in vineyards. McDaniel received a Foundation Scholarship.
  • Alicia Olivares started her journey in the wine industry through seven years of experience in multiple positions such as quality control tech, lab tech, lab manager, and working in the cellar during harvest time. Olivares is attending WSU to pursue a degree in the Viticulture and Enology program. Olivares received the Alliance of Women in Washington Wine Scholarship and a Foundation Scholarship.
  • Bernadette Gagnier is a Marine Corps Veteran and a first-generation student in the wine industry. With experiences working in vineyards across the state, Gagnier is pursuing her PhD at WSU to do research on plant-based alternatives for chemical applications in vineyards. Gagnier received a Foundation Scholarship, the Horse Heaven Hills Wine Growers Scholarship, and the George and Susan Carter Scholarship.
  • Leyla Gonzalez grew up around vineyards, nature, and plants. She spent two years at Mercer as an intern, learning from hands-on experience at both the vineyard and the winery. Gonzalez recently completed her Vineyard Technology Associates at Yakima Valley Community College, and will transfer to WSU in September to pursue a degree in Viticulture and Enology. Gonzalez aims to develop her own winemaking style and open a winery. Gonzalez received the Albert Don Memorial Scholarship, a Foundation Scholarship, and the Horse Heaven Hills Wine Growers Scholarship.
  • Samantha Mallery started as a student of Washington wine in 2017. In 2022, she became an enologist at the Owen Roe Winery. As a first-generation student and a single mom, Mallery is determined to further her education and is pursuing a BS in Viticulture and Enology at Yakima Valley College. Mallery received the Walter J. Clore Scholarship.
  • Stephen Olusola Onayemi is from Lagos, Nigeria, and is a PhD student in the Entomology department at WSU. His research focuses on using mating disruption as an alternative Integrated Pest Management (IPM) strategy to reduce the abundance of grape mealybugs in vineyards and improve grape harvests. Onayemi received a Foundation Scholarship.

The Washington Wine Industry Foundation provides solutions for the wine industry’s challenges, including the need for a future workforce that is well-educated and prepared to do great work. The Foundation’s Scholarship Program establishes, coordinates, manages, and promotes scholarships for students pursuing degrees in industry-related fields. The Scholarship Program is made possible thanks to generous supporters in the wine industry.

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