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Uncorking a career in the wine industry

3 min read
12 May 2023
Wine student.
Wine science student Joel Rosenberg is a 2023 recipient of the UniSQ Chancellor’s Excellence Scholarship.

How did the student hear about the University of Southern Queensland’s (UniSQ) wine science degree?

They heard it through the grapevine.

Dad jokes aside, travelling through Granite Belt wine country (home to UniSQ’s Queensland College of Wine Tourism) was the catalyst for Ipswich teenager Joel Rosenberg to study at UniSQ.

The high-achieving 18-year-old said his interest in the production of wine and other beverages had been brewing well before he could legally drink.

“At the beginning of Year 10, my cohort started looking at organic chemistry,” he said.

“I was immediately attracted to this type of chemistry, and it led me down one rabbit hole after the other until I discovered that this topic was essential to the production of alcoholic beverages.

“Later that year, I visited the Granite Belt with my family, and it was suggested at one of the wineries that UniSQ had a fantastic wine science course that I might be interested in pursuing.

“Looking back, I owe my parents a lot because I initially didn’t want to continue science in Year 10. They convinced me to do at least one science subject as it is a rapidly growing field, and they thought I might like it.”

Joel graduated from Ipswich Grammar School last year with an ATAR score of 98.85.

But instead of using his impressive Australian Tertiary Admission Rank score to study a popular program with high ATAR requirements, such as medicine and law, Joel followed his passion by enrolling in UniSQ’s Bachelor of Science (Wine Science)

“A lot of people don't think about it, but there is a lot of work that goes into every glass of wine or spirits we drink,” he said.

“Something that attracted me to UniSQ was that every graduate I spoke to, commended the University on how practical the degree was.

“In just my first semester, I have already experienced lots of hands-on lab time

“In future courses for my major, I will be off to Stanthorpe to complete several residential schools at the Queensland College of Wine Tourism and some wineries, which I’m excited about.

Determined to learn more about creating the perfect drop, Joel said he was looking forward to entering a growing industry

“Initially, I would love to work in the wine industry as either a winemaker or a viticulturist,” he said

“There are many regions I could work in, and I would enjoy working in places across South Australia, Victoria and Tasmania, and internationally like New Zealand's South Island

“I plan on working in the wine industry for some time but would one day like to start a distillery.

Joel is one of many new students to start their university journey this semester. He is also a 2023 recipient of UniSQ’s coveted Chancellor’s Excellence Scholarship.

His parents joined him at the Springfield and Ipswich campuses' Scholarships Award Ceremony last night (May 11) to celebrate his achievement.

The scholarship, valued at $29,000, was awarded to the most outstanding academic achievers who completed high school in 2022.

“Given the number of residential schools in Stanthorpe, I imagine a portion of the scholarship will be very useful in covering things like accommodation and travel,” Joel said.

Joel joined 26 recipients at UniSQ's Scholarships Award Ceremony. Among the 26, more than half were UniSQ Academic Excellence Scholarships recipients, awarded to Year 12 students who put UniSQ as #1 on their QTAC application and achieved the required ATAR.