The Kentucky Distillers’ Association says it will fund scholarships at the University of Kentucky in a push to increase diversity in the distilled spirits industry.
The association said Wednesday that its scholars program fund will support full tuition each year for up to four students in UK’s distillation, wine and brewing studies program.
KDA President Eric Gregory says there's a lack of diverse voices in the spirits industry. He says the scholars program is a vital part of the group's commitment to building a workforce that better reflects the country’s population and culture.
“This kind of partnership is representative of how UK seeks to work with industry to remove barriers for underrepresented students to an impactful part of Kentucky’s economy,” said Nancy Cox, dean of the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment.
“The distillation, wine and brewing studies certificate program is a nontraditional offering, but it offers excellent preparation for careers in the spirits industry.”
According to the release from the Kentucky Distillers' Association, bourbon is one of Kentucky's "most historic and treasured industries" and generates more than 20,000 jobs.