Local wine professor to teach in Argentina
Dr. Liz Thach, who is the Korbel Professor of Wine Business at Sonoma State University, has been selected for a Fulbright Specialists project in Mendoza, Argentina. She will travel to the National University of Cuyo in March of 2014 and spend two weeks teaching classes on wine business, wine marketing and eno-tourism to students in the Masters of Viticulture and Enology program.
“I’m very excited,” said Thach, who has been working with the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship board for a while to find a time that worked. Originally they wanted her to teach this year, however the current schedule fits within the SSU schedule better taking place during mid-terms and the spring break.
Thach, who loves to travel and has been to over 35 countries, including prior stops in Argentina, was encouraged by other professors to apply to the Fulbright Program.
“It is a very lengthy process,” she said. “There was a lot of paperwork and references and then you wait for almost a year to find out where you are going.”
Argentina is the fifth largest wine producer in the world just behind the United States, who is 4th on the list. Thach is the current Korbel Professor of Wine Business, which is a grant program started by Gary Heck that allows the recipient additional time to pursue the study of wine during the school year.
She is not overly concerned about a language barrier noting that, “The language of wine is English so many students will speak English.”
Thach is one of over 400 U.S. faculty and professionals who will travel abroad this year through the Fulbright Specialists Program. The program, created in 2000 to complement the traditional Fulbright Scholar Program, provides short-term academic opportunities (two to six weeks) to prominent U.S. faculty and professionals to support curricular and faculty development and institutional planning at post-secondary, academic institutions around the world.
Along with teaching, Thach has been published regularly in multiple wine publications since 2001, serves as a wine judge, makes regular presentations and consults with multiple wineries and other local businesses. In 2011 she was awarded the title of Master of Wine from the Institute of Masters of Wine in London. Thach is only the seventh U.S. woman to achieve this honor.