MW students Ian Casterton and Isabella Rutayungwa receive Wine Scholar Guild Masters of Wine scholarship
Master of Wine students Ian Casterton and Isabella Rutayungwa have been selected for the 2022 Wine Scholar Guild scholarship.
Wine Scholar Guild (WSG) provides certification programmes on the wines of France, Italy and Spain, enabling specialised tuition in each country. They have offered a scholarship to students in the Institute of Masters of Wine (IMW) study programme for many years to help them hone their studies, on the journey to becoming a Master of Wine.
This year’s scholarship was open to students at any stage of the MW programme. Applicants were required to write an essay discussing the trends within a French, Italian or Spanish wine region or sub-region of their choice, accompanied by their CV or biography.
As winners of the scholarship, Ian and Isabella receive full tuition for the Wine Scholar programme in either an independent study or online instructor-led format.
Julien Camus, WSG founder and president, said, “Both scholarship winners show dedication and drive, and we are delighted to be a part of their professional development. We look forward to welcoming them among our community of Wine Scholars.”
The Spanish Wine Scholar programme winner Ian is a Vancouver-based sommelier and private wine buyer. He has held various agency roles selling to the Liquor Control Board of Ontario and British Columbia Liquor Store, but has now turned his attention to the floor at Botanist Restaurant. Ian holds both the WSET Diploma and CMS Level 2 award and hopes to build on his love for wine writing, sales, and education in the years to come.
Isabella, the Italian Wine Scholar winner, completed her bachelor and master studies in management at EBS University of Business and Law, including studies abroad at KEDGE University in Bordeaux. She worked at Robert Weil winery in Kiedrich while preparing for her WSET Diploma, and has previously held positions at consulting company Wein & Rat and e-commerce companies Vicampo and Wine in Black. Now based at WeinArt in the Rheingau region, Isabella works in B2C sales, event management and e-commerce.
There were no applicants for the French Wine Scholar programme this year, which is why only two MW students were selected.
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About the Institute of Masters of Wine (IMW)
The IMW is a membership organisation with an exceptional international reputation. For almost 70 years, its members – the Masters of Wine (MWs) – have been at the forefront of leadership and expertise in the world of wine. The IMW’s mission is to promote excellence, interaction and learning across all sectors of the global wine community. MWs prove their comprehensive understanding of wine by passing the MW exam, recognised worldwide for its rigour and exacting standards. In addition to passing the exam, members must sign the code of conduct before they are entitled to use the initials MW. This requires them to uphold the highest standards of commercial conduct within the industry. Today, there are 414 Masters of Wine working in 30 countries. The membership encompasses winemakers, sommeliers, buyers, journalists, shippers, consultants, viticulturalists, academics, educators and more. There are 307 students from 36 countries in the 2022-23 MW study programme. The IMW works with 34 supporters and two research and industry associates, who help promote the IMW’s mission. The five principal supporters are Austrian Wine, AXA Millésimes, Constellation Brands, the Madame Bollinger Foundation, and Waitrose and Partners.