Combining study with varied work at a Hawke’s Bay winery, Tom Lovelock admits he’s had a dream start to a career in the wine industry.
The 24-year-old is in his second year of the Bachelor of Viticulture and Bachelor of Wine Science concurrent degree at EIT Hawke’s Bay, and is coupling that with a permanent job at Moana Park, a family-owned winery making award-winning estate wines.
“I think it’s fantastic to see the theory from lecturers being applied in the real world,” says Tom, who was recently named winner of this year’s Bragato Student Exchange Scholarship.
That’s going to take this already well-travelled young man to Italy, where he’ll spend a month visiting a wine and viticulture school, wineries and various wine regions.
“There are so many opportunities out there and so much support that you really can get places so quickly,” Tom says. “You can move along that career path if you put your mind to it.”
Weighing up where in Australasia he might study, he chose EIT having heard that it offered a good balance between academic work and hands-on learning. He’s enjoying the concurrent degree because it appeals to both his creative side and his academic bent.
Just a 10-minute drive from EIT, Moana Park has been fantastically supportive, Tom says. The winery owners are understanding about exams and other study demands, and are happy to answer questions.
EIT encourages Wine and Viticulture degree study in the form of its Year 13 Degree Study Grant, available to North Island Year 13 school leavers.
This is an extension of the same scholarship designed specifically for Hawke’s Bay Year 13 students wishing to study one of EIT’s ten degree level programmes. The scholarships provide free first-year study fees and 50 percent second-year study fees.