The McBride Sisters SHE CAN Fund today announces its continued commitment to invest in professional women on their journey to learn and master the business of wine. Specifically, it will focus its efforts on supporting women pursuing professional advancement within at least one key area of the wine industry including Sommelier Certification, WSET Certification or Business of Wine Education course completion.
Established in 2019, the McBride Sisters SHE CAN Fund has invested to date more than $3 million in the professional advancement and career growth of high-potential, professional women working in male-dominated industries, with a particular focus on women of color. Via monetary grants, advertising credits, scholarship funding and mentorship programs, the SHE CAN Fund has received support from corporate partners such as Facebook (Meta), Morgan Stanley, and Brand Now, plus industry organizations including the Wine Institute and The Court of Master Sommeliers, as well as individual seed impact investors.
This year, women who are currently working in and seeking leadership positions in the wine and spirits industry, as well as entrepreneurs in related fields, are encouraged to apply to the 2023 McBride Sisters SHE CAN Fund. Grantees can apply for one of three scholarships, from courses and exams issued through either (1) Court of Master Sommeliers or (2) Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET), or (3) Business of Wine Education online course work focusing on areas such as Supply Chain Value, Sales & Marketing, Viticulture, Mass Wine Production, Winery Operations, Point of Purchase, and Importing & Exporting.
“I’m very excited to announce this year’s Fund focus on the business of wine,” says Robin McBride, Co-Founder of McBride Sisters Wine Company and The McBride Sisters SHE CAN Fund. “This area is where my sister Andréa and I can lend most of our personal expertise to professional women and students entering the wine industry. Our experience building our business from the ground up and touching every aspect of the wine business hands-on gives us the ability to showcase how broad the wine industry is and how to lead from within it.”
In addition to scholarships, the 2023 SHE CAN Fund will award 30 women – #SHECANTHRIVE 2020 initiative grantees – membership to 510media’s Hope Academy, an organization providing mentorship, training and community. 510media’s Hope Academy was founded to address the resource gaps in Black entrepreneurial and creative endeavors, and is committed to helping facilitate solutions that address Black economic challenges.
Since its inception, the McBride Sisters SHE CAN Fund has provided over thirty wine education scholarships and has built a national membership database of over 6,000 women. Additionally, it has donated $100,000 to Southern University’s College of Agriculture as part of its initiative and academic scholarship program for Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCUs), supporting the next generation of diverse wine industry talent.
“I am particularly excited about 510media Hope Foundation’s involvement with our #SHECANTHRIVE 2020 sisters,” states Agnes Uboma, Chief Social Impact Officer at McBride Sisters Wine Company. “Both Nana Kofi Nti and Courtney Smith helped me to better understand and account for culture-specific psychological challenges and behavioral economics African American entrepreneurs traverse in addition to the daily grind that all entrepreneurs must surmount to be successful. I am confident that 510media Hope Foundation’s classes and workshops will guide the #SHECANTHRIVE 2020 sisters in creating bespoke mental models tailored to their business needs.”
Eligible applicants can learn more and apply for submission beginning today at www.mcbridesistersfund.org. Grant recipients will be announced in the fall.
About the McBride Sisters SHE CAN Fund:
At its inception, The McBride Sisters SHE CAN Fund was created by the McBride Sisters Wine Company founders Robin McBride and Andréa McBride John to promote the professional advancement of women in the wine industry in a concerted effort to help close the gender and race gap. In its first year, the fund awarded scholarships of nearly $40,000 to empower women to strive for change and to create opportunities for themselves and others, where there had not been before. Today, the Fund is rapidly growing, and runs three programs:
● #YESSHECAN is dedicated to the professional advancement of women in male-dominated fields. Each year, the Fund shifts its focus to support different communities of professional women via monetary business grants, scholarships for professional training and certifications, and mentorship opportunities to aid in career advancement.
● A subset of #YESSHECAN, the Fund’s #SHECANTHRIVE program provides programming, resources, and grants for Black women-owned businesses and entrepreneurs. The SHE CAN Fund launched the program in 2020 with rapid relief grants and support services in response to the international COVID-19 pandemic, during which Black-owned businesses were disproportionately hit the hardest. Since the launch, 77 Black women entrepreneurs have received grants and services totaling more than $2.5 million from impact investors.
● Launched in 2021, #SHECANGreaux is The McBride Sisters SHE CAN Fund’s first-ever initiative and academic scholarship program directed towards Historically Black College and Universities (HBCUs), created in partnership with Southern University’s College of Agricultural Family and Consumer Sciences (SU Ag). A play on words inspired by the uniquely French heritage of Black Creole history in Louisiana, as well as SU Ag’s rally “Geaux Jags,” #SHECANGreaux was created with the goal of generating a pipeline of HBCU students to lead the wine industry’s future of diverse professionals.
Please find more information at https://www.mcbridesistersfund.org/.
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