Star Tribune has an interesting recent article called The Bias Against Vocational Education found at this link http://m.startribune.com/opinion/commentaries/291592871.html.The article caught my eye as an experiential learner. It would seem that if we had a guild to train many students in areas that truly captured their imagination we’d have a more contented and committed work force. For those of us in the wine industry, how many are more impressed that someone was a protege of Andre Tchelistcheff, Merry Edwards or Heidi Barrett or any number of truly superlative wine makers than someone who went to a university to study? Although, I will admit to being very impressed that talented Liz Roskam from Moline Illinois was the first American woman to earn the Diplome d’Oenologie de l’Universite de Bordeaux, on the whole I am intrigued by the little details learned at the hand of a master that free one to soar from “correct” to “brilliant”.
It simply seems the relationship and one on one learning available in a guild system is a deeper more profound learning for many than being one of hundreds in a lecture hall without as much hands-on learning. Additionally this type of trade school, guild system or journeyman program is far more likely to allow the person to stay employed in a field they love and can succeed in, finance a home rather than an education, and generally lead a productive, fulfilling life.
Being a Sommelier is definitely a second career, but this type of learning through the Wine & Spirits Education Trust and working for Tessa Leung have been deeply rewarding. It has truly been the perfect education for my style of learning.
Please share your thoughts. Is there someone who taught you something that has stayed with you all your life? Please share it here!