Oct 25, 2021  
2020-2021 General Catalog 
2020-2021 General Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Business Administration with a Wine Business Concentration, MBA

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The Sonoma MBA in Wine Business is intended to prepare graduates for positions of management and leadership in wine industry organizations. Located in the heart of California’s wine country, we offer extraordinary experiences in learning through local internships, special studies, student-run projects, and professional connections to alumni in the industry.

The Sonoma MBA in Wine Business is designed to primarily meet the needs of the working student in Sonoma County and the North Bay region as well as full-time students from the other parts of the country and the world. Our evening classes easily fit into busy schedules, small class sizes allow for students to make personal connections with classmates, and professional instructors are committed to helping students reach future business goals.

The Wine Business MBA program (31 units) consists of the following course sequence:

  • eMBArk Weekend
  • 4 Core Courses
  • 3 Theme Area Courses
  • 2 Elective Courses
  • 1 Capstone Experience

Note: A minimum of 3 of the Theme Area and Elective Courses need to be Wine Business Courses.

Special Program Requirements

All candidates for the Sonoma MBA in Wine Business will be expected to complete the Foundation and Intermediate levels of the online Wine Business Management Certificate program before being admissible to the Sonoma MBA program in Wine Business. This requirement may be waived by completion of 24 units of wine related coursework, 24 months of wine industry work experience, or any combination thereof.

eMBArk Weekend (1 unit)

The MBA experience begins with an experiential immersion weekend day that combines academic planning, teamwork development, and case analysis practice.

4 Core Courses (12 Units)

The MBA core courses are a cluster of graduate business courses that provide a base knowledge upon which other courses and theme areas build. In the first year, students complete the four core courses as a cohort, a group study model that builds relationships and mirrors a team workforce environment. Two courses are completed in the Fall Semester and two courses are completed in the Spring Semester. The four core courses which are prerequisites for all other courses are:

3 Theme Areas (9 Units)

Breadth of exposure and relevance to today’s workplace is ensured by requiring students to take one course in each of three thematic areas: Leadership and Ethics, International Business and Global Issues, and Contemporary Business Issues. A sample of possible courses in each theme areas include:

International Business and Global Issues

Contemporary Business Issues

2 Elective Courses (6 Units)

Students gain depth in the areas of their interest by choosing two electives taken from any thematic area, or by setting up a special study experience or an internship project.

1 Capstone (3 Units)

Students put it all together in a final business strategy course (BUS 591 ) that requires them to develop an in-depth case study on an existing wine business. To enroll in the capstone course, it must be the student’s last semester in the program and the student must have completed the 4 core and 3 theme area courses. Exceptions require the approval of the Director of MBA Programs.

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