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Club

The „Weinakademiker Club“ is the alumni organisation of students who successfully graduated from the Austrian Wine Academy.

The title „Weinakademiker“ is awarded upon the passing of a number of highly challenging exams and requires profound knowledge in the field of wine production, wine styles as well as the wine industry and its mechanisms. It is based on the Diploma in Wine & Spirits of the British Wine & Spirit Education Trusts WSET – which belongs to the best known educational systems in the wine sector on an international level. The title Weinakademiker requires a written thesis alike.

Today, Weinakademiker work in all sectors of the wine industry, trade or marketing, event organisation or PR; they act as wine growers or wine consultants. Even private wine lovers increasingly decide to enrol in the courses of the Wine Academy .

 

Aims & Function

 

The Club der Weinakademiker offers networking possibilities on a national and international level to its members. Via branches it is particularly present in many Austrian and German cities and regions as well as in Switzerland, Benelux countries and Eastern Europe and organises first of all in-house tastings, seminars, lectures, international wine journeys and ongoing informative activities troughout Europe.

All those activities aim at continuing education following the graduation from the Wine Academy – all Weinakademiker are obliged to sign a code of honour which requires all graduates to permanently enhance their wine knowledge.

 

Furthermore the Club supports the permanent improvement of the wine quality in the individual regions and an expansion of the wine knowledge on all levels. It cooperates with a number of renowned institutions and companies in the wine world, such as the Austrian Wine Marketing Board (AWMB), the Association of German Praedikat Wine Estates (VDP), the Deutsches Weininstitut (German Wine institution - DWI) or the Swiss Wine Marketing in order to increasingly improve all activities for their members and open the wide wine knowledge to an increasing number of international graduates.

In addition, it aims at supporting students at the Wine Academy in preparing for their exams  in so far as they are invited to participate in in-house Club events and get assistance from Weinakademikern right there.

 

Structure

Throughout Europe more than 750 graduates were awarded the title, above all in Austria, Germany, Switzerland but also in 30 further nations, which means in Italy, Hungary, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Serbia, Poland, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Greece, Great Britain, Belarus, Sweden, Panama, Ireland, Liechtenstein, South Africa, Denmark, France, Russia, Japan, Australia, Iran, China, Canada and the United States.

 

The title Weinakademiker is awarded to successfull graduates from the Diploma in Wine & Spirits by the advisory board of the Wine Academy –  the title automatically includes membership in the Club.

 

Weinakademiker h.c.

For their merits in the wine education, among others in cooperation with the Weinakademie Österreich, the following persons were appointed as Weinakademiker h.c. (chronological order):

Jancis Robinson MW 1994

For her decades of work as a wine journalist as an icon of wine journalism and the BBC series Wines of the world with her own contribution to Austria.    

John Casson MW 1994     

As executive director of the IMW, he received the title for the achievements of the IMW in international wine education.  

David Wrigley MW 1994

As Head of Awards of the WSET for his services in the establishment of the WSET Diploma at the Weinakademie Österreich.

Lynne Sherriff MW 1995

As global wine educator and first MW lecturer at the Weinakademie as well as international ambassador of the Weinakademie Österreich.          

Gareth Lawrence 1998

For his merits in the implementation of the German WSET Diploma in Wines and Spirits at the Weinakademie as a marker of the first years.       

Arne Ronold MW 1999

The Norwegian Robert Parker was one of the first to publish about Austrian wines in Scandinavia.

For his work and merits within the project team for the MW Symposium in Vienna 2002.                              

Prof. Dr. Monika Christmann 2001

For her many years of training at the Weinakademie and her services in establishing cooperation with the Geisenheim University of Applied Sciences.

Philipp Schwander MW 2002

For his services to Austrian wine in Switzerland and his training at the Weinakademie Österreich.

Dr. Gabor Rohaly 2006

The first internationally oriented Wine Educator of Hungary and long-standing cooperation partner and supporter of the Weinakademie in Hungary.

Dr. Franz Fischler 2007

The Austrian Wine Academy opened its doors in 1991 as the Minister of Agriculture, and later became the EU's Commissioner for Agriculture, supporting it benevolently.                        

Frank Smulders MW 2011

For his merits as a long-time lecturer at the Weinakademie and as a cooperation partner of the Weinakademie qualification in the Netherlands and Belgium.                               

Prof. Dr. Hannes Schultz 2012

For his many years of training at the Weinakademie Österreich and his services in further cooperation with the new Geisenheim University of Applied Sciences.       

Konstantinos Lazarakis MW 2012

For his services during the MW course in Rust and the establishment of the English WSET Diploma at the Weinakademie.

Marchese Piero Antinori 2015

For his services to the cultural heritage of wine worldwide and in particular for establishing the cooperation with the Weinakademie with the Istituto Grandi Marchi in Italy.

Prof. Dr. Klaus Schaller 2016

For his achievements in international teaching and research and in particular in establishing the cooperation between the Weinakademie and the Geisenheim Research Station in 2001.