Linfield College received the biggest donation in the state’s history to support wine education on Thursday.
Grace and Ken Evenstad, founders of Domaine Serene, pledged $6 million to help expand the college's wine program which offers the first liberal arts degree in wine studies in the US.
The gift is also one of the largest donations in Linfield's history.
The program will help to build a wine laboratory as a part of a new science building that is under development at the McMinnville campus.
The Grace and Ken Evenstad Center for Wine Education emphasize all aspects of the wine industry, from tasting-room operations to marketing, finance and accounting.
"Ken and I were drawn to the fact that this new and unique program will focus on all aspects of running a successful and sustainable wine business," Grace Evenstad said. "This gift will enable thousands of future students to follow their passions in the wine business.”
"It is our hope that the newly endowed wine studies program acts as a magnet to attract the brightest minds from around the world to further propel our industry," Ken Evenstad adds.
The partnership between Domaine Serene and Linfield are underway, with on-site educational programs hosted by the winery and a study-abroad trip for Linfield students that included a visit to the Evenstad's French winery.
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